How To Monetize A Tiny List With Greg Johnson

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Are you planning to build a profitable list down the road but find it hard to effectively communicate with your list? Well, you’re in luck because Greg Johnson is here to spill his top strategies to extract the most money from your list, and he’s got the results to prove it!

Guest: Greg Johnson is the owner of Email Magic, an acclaimed marketing coach, and consultant, and is one of the experts on how email marketing works. 

[00:00] In this episode, Igor is joined by Greg Johnson from to discuss the best ways to extract the most money from your list by changing or improving the way you communicate with your subscribers.

[02:11] Igor’s pitch philosophy:

  • I come from the philosophy that when you get them dressed up, you need to give them somewhere to go.

  • There’s always something that I’ll be pitching in my emails, whether it’s a webinar, a free giveaway, or an offer of some kind, but there will be something that you can click on.

[03:19] How to get instantly whitelisted?

  • My welcome series is just three emails, and it is just setting expectations and nothing else.

  • In the first email, I briefly introduce myself and acknowledge that people signed up.

  • I tell them, there’s another email coming tomorrow and if they don’t mind, taking a few seconds, go ahead and hit reply. 
  • I’m trying to instantly get whitelisted without asking them to whitelist me, and you’d be shocked by the number of people that do that.

  • But almost every single person who signs up just hits reply real fast and sends me a blank email. And then that usually guarantees that the next one ends up in their inbox. 

[04:58] This is how you effectively filter your list:

  • In the second email I basically just kind of throw down, like, whatever credibility I have.

  • I explain who I am and what they can expect to hear from me and if this sounds fun, stick around, and if not unsubscribe.

  • I’m immediately trying to filter people. I want people who want to be there.

  • If people are not going to open my emails, then they’re definitely not going to click my calls to action. It’s a waste of everybody’s time. “

  • I’d rather have a smaller, high-quality list than the larger one.

[05:42] Greg’s deliverability hack:

  • The third email is more just giving them some of my nuggets of wisdom, things that I believe to be true that are maybe a little unconventional from what they’ve heard from other marketers.

  • I give them something to click, and there’s like a video to go watch. So I’m getting a click right there because that’s another factor in improving deliverability. 

[06:42] Benefits of mailing daily:

  • You’ll have more revenue, but you’ll also have a higher unsubscribe rate.

  • You’re going to have more turnover, the more often you send.

  • You have to have a consistent plan for replenishing and growing the list on the other side, otherwise, you’re gonna get into trouble.

[07:56] Burning out your list:

  • I don’t have a huge traffic source turned on right now. I believe that I’ve really maximized the value that I can deliver people value that I can pull from people and maintain a healthy list attrition rate by sending between one and three times a week.

  • When I have the traffic coming in every day, I think daily makes more sense. But I just want to point out that at a certain stage, daily may not make sense.

  • When you’re on the smaller side when you’re still growing and kind of dialing in your voice your offers and what that cadence is and I think it’s better to start slow and make sure that you scale what works. And don’t risk burning them out.

[10:15] Factors impacting the value of your list:

  • Most people know that there are different factors that impact the value of their list.

  • One of them is its size. You know, the more people you can put offers in front of, the more opportunity that you have to sell.

  • And then I think we all know that quality is also important, right? We’ve all probably seen a difference between quality leads who are in alignment with what we have to offer, versus junk leads.

  • The third factor in determining the value of a list is, what degree of influence we have over the readers over the subscribers.

[15:11] The goal of mailing your list:

  • Every subscriber in my list equals a dollar amount. But you know, there’s going to be another 50 coming in in the next couple of hours.

  • The more the list grows, the more there will be unsubscribes, etc.

  • After many years of trial and error, what I’ve discovered is kind of developed my own way of mailing the list, often without burning that list out.
  • I don’t expect every person on my list to read every email. In fact, I kind of assume that they won’t, that they’ll miss five emails out of seven. My goal is to get them to respond.

  • I noticed that whenever I get emails from people, I can go for like a month or a week without opening any of them. But then there’s going to be one email that really gets my attention. That kind of pulls me into whatever that person has going on.

  • Back in the 90s, when an ad would come up, I’d be rolling my eyes like a commercial. But it does leave an imprint. And eventually, when they’re ready to move forward in a certain direction. I want them to think about me

[19:07] Managing the business by numbers:

  • The way you manage a big business, you manage the business by numbers, you own a big econ business.

  • I look at my clicks, and I look at my click count and the click-through rate and everything.

  • And what I’m noticing is that I’ll have a backlog of clicks coming in through my emails a week or two weeks after they got clicked.

[23:58] The mailing list that crashed the software:

  • One time, when there was a new email software and they signed up a client, who actually was one of my original mentors who coached me into solo ads and a few other email-related things.

  • He had this knack for starting businesses and making them profitable quickly.

  • When he discovered list building or online marketing in general, he started Groove, which is a company that’s rivaling, you know, click funnels and Infusionsoft, and all the rest.

  • He built a 340,000-person list in just a span of, like, 13 months or 16 months and this guy was mailing every day, sometimes twice a day, even back then we’re talking 10 years ago. And the first thing that happens, he crashes the entire company.

  • The company asked him to go clean his list or something or take out the dead weight to make it more mailable within their infrastructure.

[29:34] Know thy list:

  • Whatever offer you’re promoting, whether it’s your own or other people’s offers, it has to be a good match to the list.

  • You really need to know or at least test what your list is willing and wanting to buy. 
  • You can make a lot of money with an email list. But you have to do it the right way.

  • You have to understand who these people are, that they have found you, and what they’re looking for. And then give them that.

  • When we start putting the wrong offer in front of people, then that’s like, that’s when they disappear, that’s when they unsubscribe, they quit opening, because we’re no longer relevant to them.

[38:45] Connect with Greg Johnson:



Igor Kheifets is an amazon best-selling author of the List Building Lifestyle: Confessions of an Email Millionaire.

He’s also the host of List Building Lifestyle, the podcast for anyone who wants to make more money and have more freedom by leveraging the power of an email list

He’s widely referred to as the go-to authority on building large responsive email lists in record time.

Igor’s passionate about showing people how to live the List Building Lifestyle.