The PR BlogDigital PRContent & InboundI Created a Free 28 Day Email Course and This Happened

I Created a Free 28 Day Email Course and This Happened

A DIY content marketing experiment that exceeded my expectations.

Cover photo: @jerrysilfwer

Two months ago, I cre­ated a free 28-day email course. 

I just wanted to test if there’s any interest in the type of insights I might have to share if I com­piled them into an email course. 

After all — email com­mu­nic­a­tions are still very much underrated.

I had a one-week email course five years ago, but that was before I had an actu­al email list. Now that the email course has been live for a while, I want to share what I’ve learned.

Here we go:

Why I Wanted To Convey Ideas Instead of To-Do’s

I wanted my email les­sons to serve as short but inspir­ing aha moments.

I know that send­ing 28 emails for 28 days straight is quite a big ask. 

I, there­fore, didn’t want to send out stuff that would feel like work but rather ideas or con­cepts. I wanted to share insights that would give the read­er a boost of energy and inspir­a­tion and a notion of “yeah, I could do that”.

How I Managed To Get Enough Content for the Course

It took me the bet­ter part of a work­ing day to write 20 drafts. 

It also took me an hour to cre­ate a land­ing page and tweak some menu items and links on the blog. 

Then I pub­lished an early draft of the course to get a few sign-ups, which forced me (in a good way!) to final­ize all those 28 emails in time.

Please note: If you’re char­ging for the course, invest in a pro­fes­sion­al to proofread and copy-edit your email course. My email course was free, but I still regret not doing this.

Setting Up an Email Automation Drip Was Easy 

The tool setup couldn’t be any easi­er. I cre­ated an auto­mated respon­der in Mailchimp. Very easy to use and very easy to set up. 

I used an ele­ment­ary tem­plate because most email send-outs do bet­ter when they look like emails often do.

Recommendation: I use Mailchimp as my default email list manager.

How I Managed To Promote the Email Course 

I pro­moted the email course with 20 USD on Facebook and sent it to my email list, but you could do so much more.

Results: In less than 60 days, 1,452 par­ti­cipants have signed up for the email course (744 of those are not already on my blog email list). 

I’ve only had 12 unsub­scribers and manu­ally unsub­scribed about 20+ people. And only sev­en people have emailed me about vari­ous tech­nic­al difficulties.

I Unsubscribed Competitors Behaving Like Douchebags

Unsubscribe people who mis­be­have — it’s your list and your giveaways.

A few people emailed me back to give me “advice”:

For some reas­on, they’ve all been male Swedish digit­al mar­keters aged 35 – 45 who seemed angry with me for shar­ing know­ledge. Why they bothered to sign up will remain an irony, I guess.

I unsub­scribed them with a polite notice explain­ing why I did so.

Recommendation: I use Email List Validation to pro­tect my sender repu­ta­tion by keep­ing my lists free from boun­cing emails.

Yes, I Would Consider Doing Another Course

All in all, I think cre­at­ing an email course like this was worth the effort. 

If you’re a B2B com­pany, con­sider let­ting your experts share their best advice in a giveaway course for sign-ups. (And no, it doesn’t have to be 28 days long!) 

As long as people tak­ing your course are will­ing to recom­mend it after it, you’ve got your­self a great mar­ket­ing asset!

Please sup­port my blog by shar­ing it with oth­er PR- and com­mu­nic­a­tion pro­fes­sion­als. For ques­tions or PR sup­port, con­tact me via jerry@​spinfactory.​com.

Update 2020-12-18: The email course is now unpub­lished since it’s due for an update.

Jerry Silfwer
Jerry Silfwer
Jerry Silfwer, alias Doctor Spin, is an awarded senior adviser specialising in public relations and digital strategy. Currently CEO at KIX Index and Spin Factory. Before that, he worked at Kaufmann, Whispr Group, Springtime PR, and Spotlight PR. Based in Stockholm, Sweden.

The Cover Photo


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