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Facebook Is Bad At Being You. (Not A Typo.)

Have you ever heard someone say they’re “bad at” Facebook?  

“Oh yeah, must have missed that, sorry, I’m bad at Facebook” or

“I know, I never post, I’m bad at Facebook.”

This makes me laugh.  Have you seen the movie The Social Network?  There’s a line when screen-Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook is “about taking the entire social experience of college and putting it online.”  

Even though this was from a screenplay, it’s mostly true – Facebook was designed to mimic aspects of real life (just, more addicting).  If it’s hard to use, that’s their fault, not yours.

I don’t think it’s possible to be “bad at” Facebook – if anything, Facebook is bad at being you.  After all, if any virtual tool is doing its job, it should feel even more frictionless than real life. That’s the whole point of using it.

I bring this up because last time we talked about using an active email list.  It magnifies your ability to reach people with one action, multiplying your luck with more chances that good things will happen.

But I hear a few things in reply, the first of which is “I’m not good at emails.”

Honest question:  What if you made your emails something you’re already good at?  

Because I’ve been there.  I used to mostly just write a blog, and I didn’t get what I was supposed to do with my email list.  I’d try to write an email, and it either sounded stilted or didn’t seem to add anything of value. I tried looking for examples from others and writing my own version, but it sounded fake.  It stressed me out. No wonder my frequency was haphazard.

Then one day I realized:  Hang on. I write letters as a hobby. I would have no trouble doing this if I could somehow write to everyone on folded paper and hand-scrawl their address on the front:

* Actual letters currently sitting on my counter waiting to go out *


I conceded I couldn’t write everyone’s address out every week, but good grief: Why don’t I just write every email like a letter?  

And I did.  

Suddenly, writing these emails got much faster, and much easier, because I was doing something I already knew how to do.  

I also knew how to quickly tell the difference between a good letter and a boring one. Simple guidelines sprung out of the ground where I had been lost before. Interaction went through the roof.

So I ask again – what do you already know how to do?  How do you already enjoy talking with people? Because however you like to talk to people, others feel the same way – and they’d love to receive it.

Your emails can take any form you want, by the way:

  • Prefer speaking to writing?  Send out a photo with a 1 min audio recording of you telling us what’s important about the image. (I had one client who disliked writing, but she nearly brought me to tears anytime she talked aloud about a client…if that’s your strength, use it!)
  • Feel weird talking alone?  You can deliver short videos of you having a conversation with someone else, exchanging stories or ideas.  You don’t have to run a podcast – sometimes, shorter is better!
  • You can write a handwritten note, take a photo of it, and email the photo. (Like PostSecret, only just from you.)
  • Love texting? By all means, thumb-type a text of something funny (memes and all) and email a screenshot.

In short, you don’t have to be “good at emailing.”  That’s backwards. You take whatever you’re already good at, and put that in the email.  It’s not a fixed platform you have to conform to. Make it conform to you.

Whatever you choose, here’s the cool part:

You’ll refine it over time.  (Ever look back at the earliest Humans of New York posts?  He’s gotten so much better at pulling people in with one paragraph.  You’ll be the same.) Before you know it, your emails will be a signature – one that builds relationships no one else can copy.

Don’t worry, we’re going to get to the, “Well I tried once, but no one signed up” and “I still don’t have time” issues.

But for now, ask yourself:  What are three ways you already like communicating with friends?  In that list is an uncut diamond of an idea of how to reach your people regularly.  (If you don’t believe me, tell me what your three are and I’ll give you one idea back.)

Next time we’re going to tackle what to do when you try something and hear crickets.



P.S. You may already be thinking that you love the idea of starting or revitalizing an email list – you just need to get it off your to-do list.  

Ooooh, let me! Let me! I’m in my eighth year of running a successful email list, and I’d love to take this off your hands.


Email List Quick Start with Jenika

Feb 15th – March 1st | 6 Spots Open 1 Spot Remaining

One on one, we’ll either revitalize your current email list or start one for you from scratch + plan the next six months in one clean swoop. 

This is ideal for you if you’re one of three kinds of people:

You have an existing list but it’s underperforming, and you’re too busy or too embarrassed to figure out how to make it better (come hang out in my no-judgment zone!).

You sort-of have a list but let it lapse and you feel itchy and ughhhhh whenever you think about getting back to it.

You’re starting fresh and get why you want an email list, but need someone to take the startup effort off your hands plus give you a success plan you can truly run with.

Together, we will:

  • Identify a “hook” and sign-up incentive that your audience will be too curious not to grab
  • Create a welcome series of 4-6 emails that deliver the promised hook + gently pitch your services.  Yes, I’ll write the full text, you can edit if you like. (If you’re going to record audio instead of write, I’ll script/outline the emails for you.)
  • Identify what style + format of emailing will feel natural and easy for you moving forward, along with a creation schedule that actually works with your life.
  • I’ll provide a calendar of 12 clear, personalized email topics/ideas to use moving forward. Woven together with updates on your work, this typically covers 6 months of emails. Boom.
  • Personalize a ‘Never-Ending Content Generator’ specifically for your email list – my one-page tool that will ensure you never run out of topics that your people want to read.
  • Create a clear, two-pronged strategy for building your list when you’ve got limited time.


  • Questionnaire + 2 hour Skype strategy meeting
  • Text for your sign-up boxes and a 4-6 email welcome sequence (I’ll write, you can tweak any word choices as needed to ensure it’s 100% your voice)
  • Bonus audio lessons: Creating emails people can’t wait to open + sustainable list-building strategies
  • List of 12 personalized, detailed topics to cover that your audience will love (I include this as a bonus when I do website copywriting, one client told me the list alone was more valuable than the website copywriting – ha!)
  • Personalized “Never-Ending Content Generator” – a road map of ideas to keep you moving forward with purpose
  • All the thinking-through and figuring-out done so you know exactly what you’re sending and why.

Essentially, we’ll get everything you need done except the tech end of setting up your email-sending account – and that’s only because your platform will have clear tutorials and more specific help. (Tip: I am a fan of MailChimp for total beginners).

If you’re ready to skip over the startup blehhh and move right to the phase where you’re confidently sending email and having fun, COME JOIN IN!

6 2 spots available, first come first served.

The price for the coaching, teaching, and copywriting is $1599 – all-inclusive, no extra fees or hidden payments.

Excited? Reply to this email and claim your spot!

Have questions? Hit me with them. Tell me your whole situation and I’ll read and reply over a cup of tea. I’ll always give you an up-front answer if I think I can help or not, or if we can tweak the service to suit a special situation. Just ask!

Talk soon.

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