Hey everybody! Welcome to another addition of the Ask Andy blog series, where sometimes I drop dated pop culture references like it’s a rerun of Best Week Ever.

Toni M. asks, “How often should I send out an email promoting my Etsy shop of Refinished Furniture so that it’s not spam?”

Well, it could be monthly, weekly … or more. Let your subscribers decide. You have a few options with the way you approach this. One way, is to have separate lists and let your subscribers determine how often they wish to receive emails from you. They may be more likely to sign up for a weekly digest of all your new products, rather than a daily update. Others may just want to read your monthly newsletter. Take a cue from Burger King. Let them know: Have It Your Way.

You can also test out sending frequency yourself. Perhaps you’ve only been sending monthly. Trying sending twice a month. See if your subscribers opt out after the increase. If they don’t flee in masses, they’re OK with increased frequency. If you overdo it, your subscribers will find themselves asking, “hey, hey, hey, hey, hey … what’s going on here?”

There’s another path. Don’t promote. Well, sort of. Instead, work to establish yourself as a trusted resource. Don’t even try to sell. In the example of your Etsy shop, talk about maintaining refinished furniture, what to look for if you want to refinish furniture yourself, how you can decorate your home using refinished furniture and certainly tons more ideas. Your subscribers will read your emails and look forward to them. They’ll learn from them. Then, when they’re in the market to purchase some refinished furniture, they’ll think of you first.

The answer to email marketing questions is frequently, “it depends.” That’s a frustrating answer. Hopefully I laid out the things on which it depends, in a way that will help you make an informed decision.