How to make raving fans out of random people who email you

Bryan Harris —  Bryan Harris - May 26th, 2016

One surprising downside to building an email list is how crazy your own personal inbox gets.

As I’m writing this I have 110 unread messages in my inbox. I’ve processed 125 emails just today and have responded to over 300 emails this week so far.

I’m 1,000,000% honored that people care enough about what we’re doing at VF to email asking questions and, frankly, giving us the time of day.

So this isn’t a complaint. It’s a reality.

It takes me multiple days to respond to my own wife and close friends.

Earlier this week I noticed that I had over 300 unread support messages about our free app ListGoal. Total fail on my part: it just got buried under all the other emails.


Today I wanted to share a quick hack that’s helped me do a better job with email. Obviously it isn’t a complete cure (thus the 100+ emails in my inbox), but it’s made a SUBSTANTIAL difference in how we process email at VF and my ability to give time to the people who matter most.

This is how it works:

Step #1: You receive an email that looks like it’ll take decent chunk of mental bandwidth to process.

Step #2: Instead of procrastinating on responding, hit a button in your browser to start recording your webcam and screen. (I highly recommend Screencastify for this.)

Step #3: Start reading through the email out loud and answer their question as you talk through the email.

Step #4: Copy the link to the video and paste it into an email for them.

Here is a quick example of this in action:

This is an email I got the other day. Typically I would read an email list this and think… “Hmm, that’s a weird question,” then archive it and move on.

But instead of putting off ignoring it and letting it site there, I recorded this quick video reply:

Cool part is this:

  1. It takes much less time and mental bandwidth to shoot a quick video response as opposed to writing out a response.
  2. The perceived value and personal touch of a video response is much higher than with a written email.

Here is one last example:

Meghan responded to a 10ksubs launch email with a question. I responded to her with a video.

Then look at what happened….

Instead of buying the $300 Rapid List Building program from us, she upgraded to the $3,000 10ksubs program.

Video FTW!