A missing force multiplier

(Reading time: 1 minute, 19 seconds)

Over the weekend I received two more welcome emails from Florida museums. That means that out of the roughly 31% of museums in Florida that do offer a newsletter, only 6.6% send their new subscribers something beyond a simple confirmation or default “thank you/welcome” email.

Graph of Florida museums that offer newsletter subscribers something more than a basic thank-you autoresponder.

(ICYMI: Here’s the backstory and here’s the Airtable database where I’m storing these results.)

Of that 6.6%, not one museum uses a welcome email to ask a question, solicit feedback, or survey the audience in some way.

Plenty of museums love to collect data about their audiences, yet — unless Florida museums are a special case and not representative of other museums in the US — it seems very few leverage their newsletter to collect information from subscribers.

And lots of museum folks will be quick to tell you that they have very limited resources. They have to find every way they can to create leverage and operate as efficiently as possible.

But they pass up the chance to introduce automation through their newsletter.

It doesn't add up.

They could spend a little time creating that initial autoresponder email that goes out to new subscriber and let it continue doing the work for them, day in and day out. Come back and check on results in a month or three, make adjustments based on audience response, and then set the machine in motion again.

Tomorrow I’ll get specific about what you can do in your autoresponder to start learning from subscribers.

For now, I’d love to hear what you think prevents these organizations from using their newsletter as a learning tool — or even as a way to communicate unique value because hardly any museums seem to even say more than “k thx bye” to new subscribers.

Why is no one using email in this way?

Is there anything that's prevented you from doing so?

Thanks for reading,


Kyle Bowen