Permission Marketing and “Too Many Emails”

I got a curious comment yesterday from someone who has been receiving messages from me about marketing by newsletters.

She said I’d talked her out of joining my real estate newsletters program because I’d said that you need permission to send email newsletters to people. That, she said, made her realize that people “don’t want too much to read in their email.”

This comment illustrates a huge misconception by many people about email marketing: that it’s all about pushing your stuff at people.

I’m here to say that the opposite is true.

Instead, successful email marketing – and particularly successful newsletter marketing – is about sharing your information with people who want to hear from you.

Once you start to look at email marketing like that, you realize how wrong this person is – and how much more effective it is if you do it the right way.


  • You get permission because it’s bad to spam. It annoys people, it harms your brand, and it will harm your business.
  • When you get permission you know you are are communicating only with people who want to hear from you.
  • Instead of pushing your message out to as many people as possible (and so getting a terrible response rate) you are communicating with only the most valuable people (and so getting a much better response rate).
  • If you are offering real value in your newsletters – useful information that is aimed at the kind of people you want to reach and which doesn’t try to sell them stuff all the time – you will encourage plenty of people to give you permission to contact them.
  • Those people will see your email newsletters as valuable and they’ll read them. That solves the problem of “too much email.”
  • By doing all this, you’ve created a valuable, mutually beneficial relationship, not one based on antagonism.