You see those sign-up forms for email newsletters everywhere.
You also see lots of articles on how to make your newsletter enticing. But it never actually occurred to you that you need an email newsletter. Why? Because personally you don’t like them at all.
After all there are plenty o’ ways to keep in touch already. So why, oh, why would you want to bother with an email newsletter?
Is an email newsletter really about offering people a choice and avoiding overlap?
Well sure, that’s one way to think about it. But that’s also probably the reason you don’t like email newsletters. They’re not giving you anything other than a different method of delivery for the same information available to everyone. Having different ways to sign up for your blog content isn’t exactly the same as having a stand alone newsletter.
Sure it’s a great option for people who don’t know how to use rss or don’t spend much time on Twitter or Facebook. But if you want to see real benefit from an email newsletter you should be thinking about offering something more – something special.
A subscriber to your email newsletter is someone special
I’ve touched on this a bit before in an interview with Freelance Publicist Rebecca Coleman. When someone takes that step to subscribe they’re saying “I’d like to get to know you better.” They’ve invited you into their inbox. You don’t want to abuse that relationship by immediately going on a promotion spree.
What should you do with an email newsletter instead?
Create stuff subscribers aren’t going to get someplace else. I also like to give an ‘insider’ feel to it as well. What this stuff is depends entirely on your specific topic. But a great rule of thumb is to create stuff people find interesting, useful or otherwise entertaining. Stuff that could stand on its own even if you had nothing to promote. It’s easy to burn out subscribers if you’re only sending them ads to buy stuff.
Over the long term you’re building a stronger connection
As this connection grows so does the likelihood of your subscribers connecting with your work. And the benefits of this connection can come in many forms, namely collaborations, new opportunities and customers.
There’s another advantage to an email newsletter
You’re not at the mercy of the fleeting nature of social media. Tweets flow past the stream. Facebook has algorithms to determine who sees what. With an email newsletter you’re in control. You decide when to send a message, how often send and it goes straight to the source.
Still unsure? Here’s another thing to remember
Your needs and preferences aren’t always the same as that of your audience. So don’t write-off something that could help you just because you wouldn’t subscribe to one. You’d be surprised how many people do!
So to recap, here’s why I find an email newsletter beneficial
- Subscribers have actively made a decision to give you permission to contact them which means they’re more interested in what you’re offering.
- You’re able to build stronger relationships and people do business with or help people they know, like and trust.
- You’re in control of when the message goes out and you’re going straight to the source.
What are your thoughts on having an email newsletter? Do you use them? Which do you like and why? Share your thoughts in the comments.