April Fools on me

Hey, I was trying to think of some clever-ass April Fools joke…..but I stumbled across a joke that’s been played on me for years…..and has set me back several years.

I’ve been blogging since November 17th, 2004.  That’s TEN YEARS.  I was the first person on the internet to publicly post my personal finances for all my small businesses, and was open about who I was.

Albeit I never started NevBlog.com with the intention of a single person to read it and never had the intention of making it a large blog, it’s almost ridiculous that my following is not FUCKING HUGE.

And here’s one of the most wasteful and regretful pieces of non-action I’ve ever done:

I failed to collect the email address of readers. 

Doesn’t seem so bad right?
Well lemme explain why I would love to go back in time and PUNCH 21 years old Neville in his big nose (who apparently had $16,721 in the bank at the time).

Here’s what happens when you spend lots of time on blog posts and stick them up on the internet randomly:

Blog posting no growth


You basically hit “publish” and hope people come to your website.  For years this is all I did.

When I was a really active blogger my site would get like 2,000 unique people a day coming to it…..but I NEVER once had a strategy on how to get those posts out there, or keep people coming back.

I had a ton of friends in marketing, but none of them convinced me to start collecting emails quite like Noah Kagan did.

Everyone said it was important, but Noah viewed collecting emails as THE NUMBER ONE METRIC he went by.

And it’s because of a chart that looks like this:

Blog posts growth with email list

You see, if my stupid 21 year old self had put a “Signup by Email” box somewhere on NevBlog.com, everyday I would’ve collected a minimum of 10 and 30 emails per day with the traffic I was getting.  That’s conservatively 600 people per month who wanted to hear from me.

And if 21 year old Neville HAD done this, then every time I put out a new blog post, I could hit up those 600 people via email saying:

“Hey, I did this thing where I got a homeless guy to sell bottled water on the side of the road, and we sold all 24 bottles in under 30 minutes!  Checkout the blog post here.

That same day, the 600 people that signed up that month would click the post.  PLUS the people the month before, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that, PLUS the people before that and so on………

Basically thousands of visitors would find out about my new post that same day.  Driving hella traffic to the site.  And since the email list and traffic would continue to grow together, it would create a “compounding traffic” effect in the long run.

So a happy APRIL FOOLS to current-Neville on missing out on tens of thousands of free subscribers & sales!!


Your business homework for tonight:
Make sure somewhere on your website (personal or business) people can signup to get more information/deals/updates from you.

Keep in mind, even though the new owner of my former business HouseOfRave.com does a horrible job with the site, this crap-ass email form still gets him an average of 3 new signups a day:


So even a poorly-executed version of an email signup will help build your business for free.  You don’t even have to be emailing on a regular basis right now….just get the damn form up today!!




P.S.  This kid Bryan Harris is doing all this stuff VERY correctly right off the bat, and already his blog is exploding.  Just two months into starting a blog, he makes $1,500+ a month from his new email subscribers automatically (which 21 year old Neville would TOTALLY be jealous of)!  I’ll feature a post about how he did this tomorrow.  Stay tuned homie.


P.P.S.  Do you have some sort of email collection thingy on your website right now?  Post a link to it in the comments, I’m curious to see it.  If you’re feeling bold, I’d love to hear the number of signups you get per day!


Blog posted on: April 1, 2014

38 comments on “April Fools on me

  1. Dave

    I have had my site up for a couple weeks, kind of using it for the same thing you said you had wanted to use yours for (tracking progress of my own goals, etc.) Anyway, I haven’t had a subscriber yet, but I also haven’t done anything to get traffic. Check it out or don’t.

  2. Hoang


    I created a welcome gate the same way as Bryan Harris has and I guess that has been most successful. I also have the sticky widget sign up and the sumo list builder.

    What do you think? ;) Loved to hear your feedback.

    1. Neville Post author

      Yeah the welcome gate thing always has highest rates since it focuses the reader entirely on signing up.

      Only suggestion would be to clean up the page….the formatting is kinda funky at the moment

  3. Gregg Owens

    Hey Nev,

    This blog post is like hearing about the time/s my parents say “I wish we invested in Mircosoft back in the day…” blah blah. You know what? They still haven’t invested in Microsoft…

    At least you have learnt from your mistakes, and are being a rad dude in the mean time :)

    I would LOVE for you to pick apart my girlfriends website man http://www.shelllings.com

    The product sells REALLY well at weekend markets, but sales online are pretty lame…

    As a thank you, I would like to offer you a bottle of wine from the region I live in – Margaret River, WA, Australia (well known region for wine)

    Its basically a bribe…

    1. Neville Post author

      Hey Gregg!

      People tend to drop off after the first page pretty fast, so that first impression is important.

      The first page of this site is random pictures, but it’s not totally clear you are selling earrings, or what the visitor should do next (click? buy? watch something?)

  4. Dev Singh

    Sign up to my V’O’P list. Become a “Very Optimized Person”, with free updates to my blog posts, special offers and my podcast show.


    Adding a bit of tongue-in-cheek has always been something I’ve been inspired to do by you Neville, amongst a handful of others in this world who seem like they really know how to have fun along the way!

    1. Neville Post author

      Hey Gregg, you might wanna put some REASON they should “get on your list”

      “Get on our list so we can send you the free starter guide to SportFasting”

      …..or some sort of “ethical bribe” they get for signing up

  5. Karen

    Hi Nev, my signup is available on every page of http://www.kipkitchen.com — using HelloBar, SumoMe popup and a signup form at the top right corner. Also added a signup form on the About and Contact pages. Am considering adding a signup at the end of each post. No signups for now due to lack of traffic.

    1. Neville Post author

      Karen, well it looks like you’ve got your email signups down. Now focus on getting people TO your recipes.

      This is all hustle in the beginning.

      You’ll need to be an ACTIVE part of groups or forums or Facebook pages that do this stuff. Or start with friends and family.

      Find others that have larger sites than yours and offer to put your recipes up as guests posts. It’s a real hustle to get a community going at first.

  6. Jeff

    Thanks for the email Neville.

    My website is stockideas.org – I’m getting about 2-5 email sign-ups each day using HelloBar and a sidebar form.

    I also noticed that a large percentage of my traffic goes primarily to 2-3 pages on my website. So on those pages I put a pop up form asking for email sign ups.

    I enjoyed reading these comments and seeing what other people are doing, thanks for the post!

  7. David K. Whitlock


    3 weeks ago tomorrow I put up an email collection form under my header at http://www.atlantaautosalon.com offering a free hand wash and consultation, we are an automotive detailing company.

    Since then I’ve received 15 leads through the form of which 6 have closed for sales after their free wash and consultation. Average sale price has been $600! Others are still schedule to come in.

    Now I’m working on adding more lead capture boxes while converting my site to WordPress this week. Will see what a welcome gate, exit intent pop-up, and sticky side widget do to my numbers.

    Your friend in the car business,

    David K. Whitlock

      1. David K. Whitlock

        Thanks Neville,

        Received that email this morning, Bryan’s killing it!

        Definitely will be implementing an auto responder strategy here shortly.

        Your friend in the car business,

        David K. Whitlock

    1. Neville

      Oh nice……hope you get the email list collection up. You gotta start somewhere, and future you will kick yourself if you don’t start now!

  8. Meghan C.

    I never added a way to capture email addresses on my website, thanks for the reminder! I’m not using my website much yet, now that baby #2 is approaching his first birthday I can make time for it again. I’ll link once I get the email capturing tech in place.

  9. Dale

    Just created one on confidencepoolpicks.com. Actually patterned it a bit after your blog. BTW, it would’ve been funny if you ended this post without finishing it. Kinda like I’m going to do when I

    1. Dale

      Read the post, awesome! One question I had was is would this be monetizable. An easy way to transition it to a paid site would be to offer anyone on the current email list a free for life subscription to build the list.

  10. Michael Hall

    Great reminder, put mine up a few months back, but only started posting again recently, lol, mostly curated content on various subjects. You should also include the social sharing icons, as each person coems to read your new contnet or stubles onto it via search traffic they can also optin and aslo spread it to their followers compounding exponentially – but don’t be like me – keep adding content – this isn’t my main online biz and was being neglected, but now i have many posts queued up.

  11. Dale

    OK, it’s like Mailchimp threw up all over. You inspired me to put in 2 Mailchimp sign up boxes and an opt in checkbox for my checkout pages on http://www.thebucko.com. I also put in a signup box on daleting.com, even though I’m still working on formatting, and one on the aforementioned confidencepoolpicks.com. Thanks!


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