Does NOT mean you can Add me to your Newsletter

Has this happened to you?

You go to a conference and exchange business cards. OR. You reply back to an advertising inquiry.


All of a sudden you get an email newsletter notice.

*cues eyeroll*

I sit here in confusion, trying to think, WHEN did I sign up for this? Then you realize, THEY added you on their own, without warning, asking, or notice.

If this is you…


I hate this. LOATHE this. Next to link bombing my Facebook page, this is even more of a frustration and disappointment. I do not think that folks really think about this…

Yeah, you may want to allow folks to keep up with you and you want them to learn more about your business, but um… sorry to burst your bubble, but adding someone to your list without permission?

This is wrong on soooo many levels…

No, I am NOT being extra… Seriously, it is wrong:

  • One. It is highly presumptuous, rude, and inconsiderate.
  • Two. It will jack up your newsletter stats. Click through rates, open rates, responsiveness to your news? All down the toilet…
  • Three. It is tacky and frustrating.
  • Lastly, it is against the internet rules.

Say word? The internet rules? YES.

Not having permission can result in fines up to 16,000 for EACH infraction. EACH.

“Before you can send any email-marketing material, you must have permission from every single one of your recipients. If your initial reaction to that statement was, “But what if…,” then stop what you’re doing, because you most likely don’t have permission.” Mailchimp

Even more:

“Email newsletters, coupons, and promotions are considered marketing or commercial emails. If you send marketing email to a list of people without their permission, then you’re sending unsolicited commercial email (UCE), otherwise known as spam. Understand where that line is drawn, because if you cross it, you can expect a call from the FTC for violating their CAN-SPAM law.” Mailchimp Shares

See what I mean?

So how are you able to grow your newsletter lists?

Here are 7 Tips to Grow Your Newsletter List

  1. Sign up for Aweber or Mailchimp or iContact and check out their respective blogs and knowledge bases for tips and lessons to learn about CAN Spam laws.
  2. Are you ASKING your readers to sign up? This can be asked or shared on Facebook and Twitter along with your link!
  3. Meanwhile on your blog, is there a place that calls the reader to sign up?
  4. Content, what are you sharing? Is it of value? Are you creating a conversation?
  5. Get a great design. A clean, playful, and chicly styled newsletter works wonders
  6. Set expectations. I share with my readers before they sign up WHEN the list will go out and how frequently so that they know what to expect…
  7. Test and retest. Figure out what works for your site and what doesn’t- then adjust and test again!

Good luck in your newsletter goals and growth!

I hope this helps, I knowwwww I cannot be the only one here in this frustration…

Just Because You have my email address

Has this happened to you? Share your stories below!


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Great list on how to run a successful newsletter! I’ve had former clients who play the “let’s subscribe everyone” game…it doesn’t end well.


You’re definitely not the only one! I’ve had this happen so often that I removed my email address from my site and put a form in it’s place. It’s crazy how many people think this practice is okay.


It’s happened to me more times than I can count. I’ve gotten newsletters from blogs I’ve never heard of and people I’ve never met. Funny true story…I was at an event and I started chatting to a woman standing next to me. After awhile, she introduces herself and tells me her blog’s name. Cue drumroll please…It was for a blog that I kept un-subscribing to and it kept subscribing me back! When I mentioned to her that I “somehow” was subscribed to her newsletter and couldn’t figure it out, she laughed and said she had an overzealous intern. Hmmm, why do I not believe that.


Seee…. UGH. 🙁


To add insult to injury, the blog was HORRIBLY written!


I find myself on newsletters for brands more often than blogs. They add my blog email without my permission and it does turn me off to the brand. Their newsletters often look very amateur.


Look! Especially after you have had an email from them… right? It is too much and frustrating… 🙁


Honestly, I didn’t think of it this way. Yes, I’ve been on the receiving end of newsletters I didn’t sign up for but I just clicked the unsubscribe button. Now that I have my own business and send out a bi-weekly newsletters I can see the relevance in only sending it to those that have subscribed via my website. I did consider adding people from my gmail contact list , glad I didn’t. I would’ve been an example of what you are talking about here! Thanks for the advice!


You are quite welcome! It has happened more than enough to really hit a nerve with me… LOL as you can see… I wish everyone well though!


I love that you gave tips on the proper way to grow your newsletter list, great info!


Thank you and thank you for the support here!


I think this happened to me once some years ago, I found myself on a list I had no idea about. I definitely unsubbed with the quickness. I have never thought to of my own will sign someone up, if you’re already on my existing CSV list (say from another email service ) and I am transferring to a new one, I just upload my list that already exists. But to go make a new list and just randomly add people? No ma’am. You tell em Marie!


Hahahah thank you sis!!!


When it comes to networking, this is the one thing that really grinds my nerves. Very presumptuous! Great read Marie.


Thank you much and kindly! It is a process…

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