When I first started building my email list, I was working for a non-profit that helps organizations put on road races and kids’ camps. I’ve always had a passion for illustration and kids’ books and I noticed that there weren’t many self-published books for kids on Amazon.
That’s when I decided to build a list around the topic of children’s books.
Fast-forward a year and half and I’d built an email list of 1,042 subscribers.
Three of my books are now on Amazon and I make around $800 a month in sales from them.
How did you do it?
I got my first 100 subscribers by doing one thing. I sent surveys to everyone I knew.
I decided that I wanted my first book to be created with the help of my peers, so I sent out a survey every week or so.
Some of the decisions my friends helped me with were:
Here’s an example of asking for feedback on the cover of my first book:
You can read more about how I “crowdsourced” my book here.
Currently my list is at 1,042 subscribers.
I went from 100 to 1,042 subscribers by doing 2 things: 1) giving advance copies, and 2) holding giveaways.
While sending out surveys helped me make my first self-published book, it also helped me build my list.
Every time someone contributed, I logged it and asked them if they would like an advance copy. When the said “yes” (as they all did) I asked for their best email address.
Additionally, I gave credit to all 216 people who responded to my surveys, to include them even more in the process.
Here’s what the credits in my first book, Alfred, The Time Traveling Dinosaur, looked like:
I recently started experimenting with giveaways as a way to attract more people to my list while spreading the word about my books.
Here’s what my first giveaway looked like:
I’m excited to share my giveaways with guests from interviews on my upcoming podcast “The Art Of Show.”
As of September 2016 I’ve self-published a total of three books on Amazon. They are:
I earn around $800 every month in book sales.
What has building an email list changed in your life and allowed you to do?
Recently I went home for the weekend with my wife to my parents’ house. My mom was asking me how “all this book stuff was going” and if I thought people would like my next book. I told her that I’m already getting feedback and hearing things people like because I just sent an email to over 1000 people.
She said, “A thousand!? You know that many people?”
The list gives me the ability to communicate with my audience and build a relationship that helps me with my creative work.
Personally, I get more freedom in terms of revenue potential, and on the business side it feels like I’m using talents and skills I hadn’t been able to tap into before.
What’s next for you?
Moving forward means focusing on 3 things:
Me + Wife
Worked At A Non-profit
The publishing world has a disconnect between the creator and the end user. Videofruit has pushed me to have a relationship with my readers first through an email list. In everything I do that relationship with my email list is THE most important thing I have and the tactics and strategies I've learned from Videofruit are priceless!