The Internet gurus will still try to tell people to push newsletters and getting subscribers they can send regular emails about site updates, sales, new products or services, etc.
I say, that is a dead end. I will subscribe to newsletters and sites but I don’t read them. They just become more clutter in my email inbox, added to the general noise I try to ignore until the day I get annoyed enough to jump through whatever hoops it takes to delete my subscription. Never read.
Why do I subscribe in the first place? You already know the answer. Why do you subscribe to the newsletters and blog update feeds which you never get around to reading in your email? You had good intentions, it sounded interesting at the time, there was an offer of a free ebook… etc.
If you want to prove the worth of having subscribers, people you contact regularly through email, test it out yourself.
Without begging, bitching or bribing send out your next regularly scheduled email to your subscribers and ask them to do one simple thing, leave a comment on your Twitter account. (Or whichever social media you choose other than your blog/ site itself). Don’t try to cheat the test by using Twitter, Facebook and etc to push people to post a comment for your test. You only cheat yourself.
If you count on having subscribers who not only read your newsletter but actually read and take action based on your tips, advice, sales, etc… where are they now? A huge list of subscribers isn’t worth anything if you can’t get them to take some form of action. How does it benefit you – other than bragging rights to having a huge subscriber base?
Subscribers who aren’t interested in your site, your newsletter, your brand, your product or service aren’t worth anything in reality. Find another way to communicate. Something that actually works.