It's a bit like overkill I know but well worth it. If I get one more person to sign up to Traffic Monsoon it helps grow my business and gets them started on a great business as well.
Auto-responder follow up is a vital part of our marketing strategy but the fact is they can be a bit impersonal and an email sent from our personal email is far more likely to get opened and get read.
To be honest if I was a really big player like some of the guys in our team and getting hundreds of subscribers a day I couldn't possibly do it. But because I'm starting from scratch I have only very limited advertising and content production in order to get me the few subscribers a day that I am.
So every subscriber is valuable to me and I want them to know that!
And yes I have had direct referrals to Traffic Monsoon from these personal emails, so it does work to reach out to people.