"I’m trying to find a way to deal with all the email I get from people who have lists I joined.
Most of them I don’t care about and never did. I only signed up to get their “special offer,” and never really wanted to be on their lists. But now I’m there and feeling like I can’t unsubscribe. SHOULD I unsubscribe, or does doing that make me a bad person?"
Only you know your truth about this, Toshanda. And, I believe that if you get quiet, you’ll find you have your answer.
But in case it actually helps to know what I think, it’s this:
If you know, from the start, that you don’t want to hear anything more from the person whose free offer you’re eyeballing, it’s probably best for you to just walk away all together.
Here's why: if you’re drawn to someone such that you actually care about the freebie, chances are that whatever else you’ll get from that person is going to resonate with you as well. But if you’re not drawn to someone and know that, why would you care about anything she has to say, much less whatever is in the freebie?
If you don’t know whether you’re drawn to someone, though, there’s absolutely nothing in the world wrong with signing up, checking out whatever the person sends out (the freebie), seeing if the message and info and style resonates with you. Then, with that knowledge and experience, if you decide it doesn’t, unsubscribe.
If the freebie doesn't give you enough to make that decision, stick around and see what else the person sends you, and then make the decision to stay or unsub. That’s the way this particular marketing method is supposed to work. And that’s really what people employing this marketing tactic expect to have happen.
Toshanda, that’s the game of it. People play it because it works. And to play it, the idea is to create enticing free offers, get you to sign up, then create compelling content on a regular basis that keeps you engaged in the hope that you’ll stick around, and, at some point, buy something.
So, if they were being honest, if you simply aren’t digging what they’re sending, and if you’re unlikely to read it, much less buy something, they really would be just as happy for you to unsubscribe. As a business owner with a list, it’s nice to look at the size of the list, but it’s so much better to know that the people who are subscribers are tuned in to what’s being shared and taking action based on what’s been shared.
Lastly, Toshanda, please know that martyring yourself (sacrificing your time, energy, self) for almost anyone isn’t wise or healthy. And doing it for someone who’s marketing to you, who probably doesn’t know you, and who won’t miss you if you go… well, I’ll let you decide what to call that.