Is Blogging Full Of Crap or Should We Use Email Marketing Instead?

What crap am I referring to? Things like posting every single day, going to all the social networking sites, plus writing dozens of outside posts for guest blogging only to see a trickle of visitors. You see it has been a little over six years since I have been on this make money online mission and the avenue I’ve found most worthy of pursuing is building email databases of potential customers across diverse niches. Better known as email marketing orย list building.

But it doesn’t end with just building a list. In fact, that is only part of the beginning…

Help a Blogger with email marketingThe main part is hidden within the email messages you will sending out to them. Although you may have bribed enticed them enough to subscribe you then have to keep them there and get then to take action on your recommendations thereby earning you some money. And aside from politically correct statements of altruism if you’re not in this to make any type of money then perhaps this post isn’t for you.

However if you do intend on generating some income online then you’re going to have to learn the correct language of email marketing…

And to be honest there is no one particular languaging style to write those emails because it depends primarily on the niche along with the type of trigger words and adjective phrases mostly used by that particular niche segment. The best ways of figuring this out is to poke around the forums, specialized Facebook pages, and other web 2.0 properties of the niche and pay close attention to the way its members speak and interact with each other. Then you implement those same phrases and stylings when writing your emails. This in and of itself builds rapport because regardless of what you may have been taught in physical science, in social science LIKE attracts LIKE ๐Ÿ˜‰

* Do this over and over and there will be no ending!

So you’re talking about some of the intricacies of email marketing BUT what does that have to do with giving basic blog tips?!

Well your blog is the point of entry for two very important things about email marketing and list building. First, blogs generally receive traffic faster due to its search engine friendly structure so once you put an optin form in a prominent position on your blog a percentage of whatever traffic you are already receiving will subscribe. Secondly, your visitors –especially your frequent visitors– have come to trust you because you have already built a rapport with them via their favorite blog posts on your site.

But I thought “blogging was full of crap”?!

Well if you already got one then you may as well use it to build a qualified email list. Your blog has primed and trained your visitors to listen to you and subscribe for further instructions :)

As your email marketing efforts improve and your list grows along with your timely rapport building messages being sent to them, you will in essence be building your own traffic base that will not be dependent on Google, keyword research, or social marketing. And of course it does take time to build all this up, but it is time well spent because once you have a few thousand+ responsive subscribers then whenever you need traffic all you have to do is send an email.

And with all this in mind I suppose blogging isn’t that full of crap after all as long as it serves a purpose…

However I still may need a bit more convincing so tell me what you think โ“



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  1. Interesting read. As much as I would like to ditch the blog entirely and go full on with email marketing. The two definitely work together. It’s hard to build an email list without the traffic from a blog! lol.

    • Well you can get the traffic without a blog by paying for it and yes there are plenty of places to buy quality traffic without breaking the bank. I recently published an ebook that reveals a whole bunch of such places… it’s at The Paid Traffic Report and it’s currently free with no opting in required.

  2. Amrik Virdi

    Email marketing is one of the most popular things these days. With that it has been
    so helpful for all for it gives a lot of benefits itโ€™s so easy and may give a lot of credits.

    • It’s almost as if email marketing were a new thing when in fact it has been the main income generator for some of the biggest marketers in online history even before there was a such thing as “blogging”. BUT now a days with the advent of blogging combined with email marketing, the probabilities of having a dependable online income stream gets even better!

      Thanks for your input Amrik

    • I am fully agree with Amrik.
      I am also starting to build email marketing. Thanks Caleb for this article.
      Thanks Ilean for your suggestion to build email marketing. I am just working on it. Hope i can build a huge email list.

  3. James Pruitt

    personally, I use a combination of the two in order to really make it more powerful. most of my posts are actually written to answer common questions that I get from my subscribers. My list is also one of my top traffic sources to my blog.

    By doing it the way I do, i continue building the relationship with my list while also sharing news and information for new blog readers, and engaging them to sign up for my list.

    • Hey James it’s cool of you to stop by ๐Ÿ˜Ž

      And yeah, your method of using the best of both worlds is smart indeed. You also touched on another important aspect which is using your email list to drive traffic to your blog then to your list then back to your blog… it creates a marketing cycle that continuously draws ppl in!

  4. Raaj Trambadia

    True Caleb, but what when it comes to a personal blog? As in, when your blog is all about inspirational/motivational/general gossip, don’t you think that simply blogging is the only way out? I’m talking about general blogs that earn through ads, not by selling any specific product of their own.

    Regards :)

    • Well if your preferred business model is earning through ads ONLY then you can still use email marketing to bring more visitors to your blog which in turn can increase ad revenues plus you can have ads within the email updates ๐Ÿ’ก

  5. Hi Caleb,
    Recent researches shows that Email is still the number one form of communication on the internet and that won’t go away any time soon, and therefore it’s much important to focus on Email Marketing if you are looking for making money online or even building your brand. However and as you said to build your Email List you need to make sure your list includes people whom already likes you, trust your recommendations and don’t identify you as a spam and this is when you need your blog, to help better build your Email list from your blog you can offer your readers free reports if they subscribe to your list.

    I am a blogger my self but I am still trying to find that free report or ebook that will help me build my Email list from my blog.

    Thanks again for discussing this interesting topic and for offering your tips.

    • As for building up the likeability, don’t forget to use the type of language your particular niche audience identifies with most as well and also make sure your first email reveals personal things about yourself in a story type fashion as it relates to the subject at hand ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Read the post in my CL link for more on “email blogging” along with the free ebook therein and thanks for the +1!

      • Hi again,

        Thank you so much for your quick reply and the advice, I will make sure to read your post about the tips to build email list. As for the Google+ you know that pluses is getting more and more important and will be extremely important after Google Penguin update so we have to start utilizing it.

  6. I agree that list building and email marketing is of the ut-most importance… But a quality blog is where you establish your trust and social capital… They don’t sign up for the email list if they don’t respect the blog…

    So I would never give up the blog. But there is a lot money to be made from the email list.

    Good thoughts… Thanks!!

    Ryan h>

    • Now one thing we have to consider is there are MANY successful marketers who do not blog and in fact do nothing except promote squeeze pages that have powerfully converting email followup message series or sometimes full blown e-courses, then there are others who solely run ezines without any other real web presence like a blog…

      So trust and social capital can be built up without a blog, it’s just that having a quality blog tends to make those things easier ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. The email list you create is like gold. I don’t think other social marketing ideas are crap but if you have a great email list you have a great key to marketing.

  8. People seem to have forgot why blogging is so important. It is an inspiration, not a marketing trick. I like the way you see it and i wish more people could be added in that.

    • Blogging definitely takes a constant dosage of inspiration and without it the posts have no life thus giving no strong enough reason for the reader to subscribe..

      And like was said to the rabbit in those cereal commercials, “tricks are for kids” :)

  9. Thanks for sharing this great article, we all know that email marketing are popular nowadays, specially in dealing with leads for you to sell your website or blog site, I don;t agree that blogging is useless, because blogging is the main heart of any website. without this nothing will be interesting in the internet. for me I think that blogging and email marketing must join for us to become successful in our own endeavor, specially online business.

    • I think that blogging and email marketing must join

      This is the conclusion I was hoping readers would see although I would never knock anyone for not blogging because as I mentioned to Ryan there are many who achieve great success with just squeeze pages, followup sequences, and ezines.

      Thanks for your insight Kate!

      • Thanks Caleb, that is what I understand about this great post of yours, maybe some readers didn’t notice, but for me, I really think that both should join.

  10. Liz

    As you said to build your Email List you need to make sure your list includes people whom already likes you, trust your recommendations and donโ€™t identify you as a spam and this is when you need your blog, to help better build your Email list from your blog you can offer your readers free reports if they subscribe to your list.

    • A blog definitely helps out the “trust” factor and those free reports you suggest adds even more value to the relationship you’re building with those subscribers.

  11. Aasma

    Blogging is the best way to build your reputation and trust among your readers and then influence them to subscribe your email list. This is how this process works best, and you can’t ignore any of them as both are parallel to each other.

  12. Blogging gets your name out there and is a better resource to use to build the list, so no, blogging is not crap. In time, your blog will become a household name and this coupled with the email list=$$$$ :-)

  13. Building a blog is the first thing we need to and we can do, with that we can start building an amazing E-mail list to get more sales
    i do prefer building a email list and maintaining relation with my email subscribers to make huge sales

  14. No blogging is the real macoy as it gets the name out. Blogging is the bait that is used to get people on the blog and then use it to get emails which is then used for maketing. Definitely not an easy thing to do.

  15. Barry

    Blogging is the bait that is used to get people on the blog and then use it to get emails which is then used for maketing.

  16. Off course email marketing has good effects on online business but today more advance techniques are introduces that can give far better results than email marketing.

  17. Jack Sander

    From my point of view, bloggers should exit their comfort zone and try to explore other techniques of making money, such as email marketing. As you have pointed out, building a great list is the main challenge, as choosing attracting offers is a lot easier.

    • You’re right because if we stay in a “comfort zone” for too long we might get complacent and then neglect other more profitable avenues. Plus most “comfort zones” only last so long so we got to be willing to explore a little…

      Thanks for your input on this Jack!

  18. Caleb,

    I’ve writing content for the web since 2000 and the one thing that has always brought me a steady flow of leads has been creating an authority site. It’s one of the single best things I’ve ever done. I’ve been a full time internet marketing for 12 years now.

    However, buying traffic is faster, but the rules are constantly changing. What works today might not work tomorrow. However, if you create an awesome blog / content site, it will stick in the search engines (assuming you don’t play any short term SEO games).

    So in my opinion, you should definitely be creating a blog and working on it, even if you’re buying traffic.

    • Search engine rules and algos change quite frequently as well so at the very least we can use paid methods to get the blood flowing until the blog gains enough authority.

      I advise this so we won’t spend all day on seo’ing our blogs because there is more to life than just internet marketing, but with 12 years in the hole I’m sure you figured that part out already David :)

  19. I think both of them have their own pros and cons. Blog is best when you are targetting general public but I guess it serves as part of the funnel and get you subscribers which then you can use for Email market you products. I think Blog is best way forward to put yourself in front of you prospective audiences and the way you communicate. I doubt that many people read those newsletter stuff anyway. So Blogs are definitely not Crap. I guess both Blog and EM compliment each other and should be respected respectively.

    • Well, the targeting of your blog depends on the subject that blog… you only want people who are interested in what that blog talks about which in turn can be used a s a great lead generator.

      As for doubting whether many people read “those newsletter stuff” think again! Newsletters like Mary Ellen Tribby, Early To Rise, Willie Crawford private social media newsletter, Mike Filsiame’s MDC newsletter and many others generate large sums of income for their respective owners because their readers look forward to receiving them in their email inboxes as opposed to going to an actual site. And mind you many newsletters are paid for subscriptions just like print magazines!

      There’s a whole world out there Jas waiting for marketers like you jump in :)

  20. Good read! Maybe I should be serious optimizing my sales funnel and opt-ins on my page, and start building my email list. Thanks Caleb!

    • Did somebody just say “sales funnel”?! That’s one of my favorite marketing topics and I recently entered it as a post for a blog contest so YES you definitely need to start optimizing your funnels and to be honest it’s awesome that you even have one as most have not figured that part out yet ๐Ÿ˜‰

  21. Ammara Wasim

    I agree that for generating income from email marketing correct language is necessary. And your blogs can be the good source for making qualified email list. Thanks.

    • Now you just said a wise thing about blogs in relation to email marketing:

      good source for making QUALIFIED email list”

      You’re welcome and thank you for your input!

  22. Raaj Trambadia

    Yeah, I now realize that ads integrated within the emails (for general blogs) would also prove to be efficient! Thanks Caleb!

    PS Please check out my latest post on Labour Day. Itโ€™s a video I shot (outside my window) right after I woke up!

  23. William, I have been blogging for almost 7-8 months now and Ileane has been the most inspiring and motivating infuence for me. I had read the first post on blogging daily few months back and that post was instrumental in making me write daily (I mean almost daily)

    Now, I am writing 4-5 days a week and the traffic is simply amazing, much more than I expected. I have ever tried Email marketing, but I am going to try it now for sure.. BasicBlogTips has always been pretty interesting and I take the tips quite seriously. How do you suggest I should begin? I dont know anything about email marketing!

    • First, you need an autoresponder account which is the system that allows you send communications to the people who sign up to be on your list..

      Secondly, you need to copy the autoresponder optin form codes then paste them on prominent places on your blog. Just look around here on Ileane’s blog to see what I mean..

      *It’s also a good idea to give away a valuable gift to entice a reader to subscribe such as free ebook, exclusive video/audio recording, or software, etc.

      Thirdly, you will need a good sequence of emails prepared to be strategically sent out to your list on specific days. Or you could just freestyle and write emails to your list as content ideas come to you… just make sure your messages pertain to what they signed up for and have a bit of your personal stories intertwined with your info whether it be educational or promotional or a mixture of both..

      *I have more on these things at MSB, just click on name and search around along with subscribing to my List Building Solution list.

  24. This is quite an interesting read, seems like its time build an email list with some cool optin forms in it. will try my hands on that, thanks for this awesome article.

    • I heard a good quote that I think fits in this moment: “Although it’s better late than never, it’s better NOW than tomorrow!”

  25. Email marketing is not better than blogging for me. There are a lot of potentials in blogging you just can’t get from emails

  26. List building is a very challenging thing, but once you get the ball rolling, you’ll definitely enjoy it. Interesting post.

    • That’s exactly how riding a bike was, but once you got the pedaling while balancing down it was nothing but smooth sailing thereafter :)

  27. Anita

    Hi Caleb,

    While I agree it’s definitely possible to build a list without blogging, I do not recommend it. Blogging allows you to build authority and there is nothing better if you want to sell stuff!

    • I agree that building authority does have some awesome benefits but just takes tremendous growth time so in the meanwhile driving/buying traffic to squeeze pages works great especially if you have the right sales funnels or a strong newsletter in place ๐Ÿ˜‰

  28. Informative post. Yes we will do email marketing also. But i think that by social marketing is the place where we get more popularity,

  29. Building a awesome list is the hardest thing , but once you build it you can even handle SEO problems as you won’t need Google much. Our subscribers have saved us many times and we show our love to them by producing quality stuff :)

  30. I think the two work best when they’re used together. The hardest part about the email list is to get the subscribers that you want. And it’s really hard to get subscribers without posting on a blog. So, I think you have to build a base with the blog before moving on to the email list.

  31. Hey Caleb,

    Thanks for the e-mail marketing tips. I am new to list building and have a small list stated, but am having difficulty knowing exactly what to send them. I want to be real, I want to provide value, but ultimately I want to make money…. These were truly great tips!



    • In what way… Adsense and email marketing aren’t exactly related ๐Ÿ˜•

      In fact sending your subscribers to some valuable related content that has Adsense ads interwoven therein is something many marketers do regularly…

      Think of email marketing as another way of driving traffic to your web pages as well as being a database of leads ๐Ÿ˜‰

  32. I have one question to ask.
    Isn’t email marketing a little bit dangerous?
    When I start to receive emails from blogs, which are obviously written following a general pattern, not having me as the sole receiver or when the number of emails from a blog increases in my inbox.. I get frustrated. And then email sender is on his way to the spam list. If the mail was personal (difficult thing to do if the list is huge) then it is another story.
    That’s my fear and that is the reason why I don’t do it.

    • If you have a site online then you have to start thinking like an internet marketer whether you see yourself as that or not. And email marketing has proven to be one of the most stable income earners for the majority of successful marketers along with the fact it creates a legal business asset. Just because you may send a message to spam for not being solely written for you alone doesn’t mean they will do the same especially if they willingly opted in to be on your list ๐Ÿ˜‰

      As long as you’re offering something of value and make your subscribers feel a sense of “exclusivity” then you will be fine.

      And although you may not be able to send an individualized email to each and every subscriber -which recently I got word on technology being developed that is coming close to that btw- you do know the demographics of them provided you know the niche well enough and so you should be able to connect with them on a deeper level than just a mere stranger could. Plus as mentioned earlier if you have a blog then it would have already been doing the work of establishing some credibility for you.

      You’ve got to overcome that fear and start testing the waters Jim and once you do, I believe you will be pleasantly surprised at the results :)

  33. I personally think that blogging is not full of c*** but some people can make it be that way because all they want is more money. That’s not wright, people will subscribe you when they feel they can trust you and that you deserve it.
    Basically you explained all with one sentence: “as long as it serves a purpose”, the blogging as same as life always need a purpose, if your purpose of blogging is to help people and teach them something valuable then your blog is not full of crap and money will come along the way.

  34. Josh Collier

    I personally choose blogging over email marketing but I guess it still depends on the products/services that you offer or which one works for your business. Or maybe one can use both!

  35. I do tend to be more biased towards email marketing because even if your blog dies out or suddenly disappears as long as you have a responsive list you will still have an audience to market to..

    However blogging and email marketing can both be used as educational tools as well as communication tools… so when you use them together you get “more bang for your buck!”

  36. I believe that blogging is great, the problem is that people do not spend enough time promoting their blogs. They also do not promote their blogs intelligently.

  37. Hello Caleb. I recently did a series of post entitled “Building Relationships for the Long Term” (the first of which is at BlogEngage –

    The art of fostering great business relationships will bring great rewards over the long term. A blog, follow-up emails or a newsletter are great tools to accomplish that end result.

    Any and all of these tools need to provide your readers/subscribers with the information THEY want and need. And personally speaking, I need to be honest and up front in any form of communication, which can sometimes mean not putting MY bottom line first….

    In my opinion, I have to put the needs of my readers first and I usually over deliver before I try to sell them something.

    But I digress… blogging as a platform has a multitude of purposes and good ones at that. You can update and inform, have your opt-in form with your ‘giveaway’ on your blog, you can sell affiliate or your own products and you can place ads like AdSense ads on your blog.

    The bottom line with all of it is – if you don’t get the traffic to your blog, no one will see any of what you have to offer… AND List-Building is KING!

    • Hey Tyronne, “income on demand” is a good way of putting it!

      For example, just the other day my site had a 404 error in reference to a recurring problem my hosting company has been dealing with on my site. However, although my site was down for a few hours I still made sales due to an email I sent out during that same time.

      In this business we MUST have a list and there’s no way around it or we will end up finding ourselves in a perpetual chasing mode.

  38. Hello Caleb,
    This is just personal preference – BUT – when I put myself in the shoes of a comsumer, I prefer a combination. I subscribe to a bunch of email lists. The ones I actually prefer are the ones that simply send a short email telling me of a new post on their blog. I don’t necessarily want to read every blog post or visit their blog to check each post. So this email/blog combo shows me the subject and short summary. If I am interested, I go to the blog. I guess looking at the RSS feeds would be similar, but I prefer the email summary.

    • Hey Abhi, nice of you to drop by. With your talents for content writing along with the fast traction you’ve been able to get with your blog, email marketing is just the natural evolutionary inclusion for you..

      Start building that list man… don’t psyche yourself out with the “I should wait until so and so first..”

      From Pat Flynn to John Chow and many other successful bloggers all said the one thing they wish they would have done in their beginnings was to immediately start building a list. And it is something I wish I would’ve first started out doing as well.

      You can be building your list now by putting a highly prominent yet attractive optin form on all your blog pages while learning at the same time ๐Ÿ’ก

      Congrats on winning the last BlogEngage contest!

      • Abhi Balani

        Hey Caleb,

        Thank you for your kind suggestion. And big thanks for your wishes on my contest win. And do you know, I have participated again. Linking the article below. Hope you can join the conversation.

  39. I believe blogging is very beneficial, and so is email marketing. Big firms prefer blogging to capture a large amount of readers while small firms will focus on email marketing because it surely allows them to interact effectively and run the business well.

  40. Learning the correct language to use in Email Marketing is definitely a must! I mean, come on! You can’t keep it vague and make the reader feel like he’s your neighbor!

    • It still amazes me how with only a small list, I still generate sales even when there’s little or no traffic coming to my blog so I know email marketing works..

      Thus the more subscribers I can get, the more income I can make and of course, blogging is one way to get some of those subscribers ๐Ÿ˜‰