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Blog Tips

5 Reasons Your Blog Needs An Email Newsletter

By Sep 13, 2011July 3rd, 201450 Comments

This post may contain affiliate links which may give us a commission at no additional cost to you. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.

Email newsletters are the most overlooked way to grow your blog audience. Email itself has gotten a bad wrap lately for being old news and totally passé. It doesn’t have nearly as a cool reputation like its younger sister social media

BUT…

Email newsletters remain one of the most effective online marketing tools available. And unless your list is huge, you can get an amazing email service provider (I like MailChimp) for free.

Mmmm…I love free ways to boost my readership. Don’t you?

email newsletters

Why Your Blog Needs An Email Newsletter

Your Name Shows Up In The Inbox

In the marketing world, this is called a touchpoint – a gentle reminder of your existence. Even if they don’t read your email, they’ve had a moment to think about you and your blog. Each touchpoint strengthens your brand and your connection with the reader.

You’ve Got Control Over The Relationship

Without an email newsletter you have to wait for your reader to come to your blog or your Facebook page. And, let’s face it, you could be waiting a really long time.

But since people are trained to check their email and because your message doesn’t disappear (like in a busy Twitter or Facebook stream) you’ll know that every Friday at 8:30 a.m. (or whenever you regularly send your email) your readers are going to get your message.

The Rest Of The Online World Could Implode, But You Would Be OK

Facebook, Blogger, Twitter – these are all platforms that we rent space from, but don’t have any say over their policies. You could wake up one day and Facebook could close your account, Twitter could become obsolete (remember MySpace?) or your Blogger account could be hacked and your content could disappear.

If you have an email subscriber list (backed up of course!) you can switch platforms and let your readership know where to find you.

It’s So Easy To Share An Email Newsletter

The thought of forwarding a great email newsletter to a friend is kind of quaint – so think how it will stand out to the recipient. It is a stronger and more personal invitation to take a look at your blog.

Your Subscription Database Is A List Of Your Super Fans

When someone gets on your list and stays there, you can pretty much bet that they really, really like what you do. Your list is also the most willing and most likely group to go the extra mile for you. Treat them right with some little extra gems in your newsletter and if you ever need a favor (like a re-tweet or a forward to their friends) they will be more than happy to help.

Do you use an email newsletter? How has it helped? If not – what is holding you back?

Join me next week when we’ll tackle elements that make an email newsletter great.

More on the Business of Blogging

50 Comments

  • Guallyjette says:

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  • Will I be able to add adsense to my email feeds if I use a service like mailchimp? Right now I use feedburner. Although, I don’t sell affiliate products, I use adsense. And because feedburner is a Google property integrating adsense into your email feeds is pretty easy. That is the only reason I use feedburner.

  • Can’t wait for next week. I’d love to know what to include in the newsletter. I’ve seen some newsletters that I like but they’re all from bigger blogs that seem to have contributors. Exciting stuff.

  • Nicole says:

    I love that idea!! It’s something I haven’t considered yet nor have I considered any benefits (aside Tom more work…) I think I will check that out now…

    Now if I can just get settled with my blog design…

  • Mama Mary says:

    I love this post. Was just thinking about the benefits of an email subscription base and debating whether or not to start one for my new site. You just helped me make my decision, thank you!

  • Tracie says:

    I have thought about doing this a lot recently, but I’m really not sure what my newsletter should include.

    I don’t want it to be dorky!

  • Jenny says:

    Hi Natalie,

    I just signed up with Mail Chimp. Is there a way to import my feedburner subscriber list that you know of? Thanks for your help!

    Jenny

    • Natalie says:

      Congrats on making the jump to MC! You can upload your feedburner by going into feedburner, downloading your list and then uploading into MC.

  • Veronica says:

    Will be adding one to my site!

  • Susan Silver says:

    My worry is coming up with content. It is already hard enough to keep up a blog, but doing a newsletter might be too much.

  • Alene says:

    I was just about to give up on mine. Thanks for the reminder of how important it is!

  • Great advice! I’ve been thinking about doing this but didn’t know where to start. I’ll be implementing this ASAP. I get some really good ones from blogs I follow. They are simple, don’t clog my inbox and I only get them from the blogs I really enjoy so it’s not fluff. If someone subscribes to your feed also will it be too much? I don’t want my subscribers to get overwhelmed. The other thing I notice is that for some blogs the email comes with a delay. I checked the blog and the email with the content comes a day or so later.

  • Marie Cole says:

    Ohhh wow, good points, never thought about it….Thank you!

  • Arief says:

    Maybe, you are need watch more video about Internet Marketing and autoresponders

  • Modern Gypsy says:

    This sounds interesting…will have to look into it. Would a once a month email newsletter work too?

  • Traci says:

    Great advice I took. Thanks.

  • Kimberly says:

    I am bookmarking this and adding it to the to-do list!

  • Vi Nguyen says:

    Great idea! I’ve always thought email was one of the best ways to get your blog posts noticed and shows true following. Maybe one day I’ll do a newsletter =)

  • Colleeng says:

    I hope you’ll talk about how people with blogs that are not product or learning based can do to use this to their advantage. I review movies, tv and books, so on the surface here, I don’t see what I can offer in a newsletter that isn’t already on my blog. Also, since I’m not reviewing products for companies, giveaways would have to be out of pocket, so I couldn’t do that on a regular basis.

  • Brankica says:

    Not only do I agree but have a favorite here and that is the imploding part 🙂 I have seen so many people lose their Facebook and Twitter accounts recently, oh Google+ accounts as well, and sometimes they really didn’t do anything wrong.

    It is annoying and the worst part is that a lot of times it takes days to figure out who to contact to ask what happened, because they always do it with no warning. And once you do finally find the contact person they say you violated the rules (but won’t say which one, so you have to figure it out by reading all hundred of them and become no smarter after that).

    A list really is a great thing to have and build upon, I often try to give away stuff to my list or give them some tips before I publish it on my blog. I just hope they are satisfied being on it which a very low unsubscribe rate is showing me 🙂

  • I know I should do this, but it seems like I barely have time to post these days. How do you manage a newsletter efficiently?

    • Natalie says:

      I’m a fan of posting less often – I only post once a week on my site. That allows me to do a Friday newsletter and a guest post or two – both of which grow my audience.

      Then you just have to start small and keep the newsletter manageable. Mine is a 300 word or less deal and I link to the most important things going on. I sent once a week, but every other week or even once a month is ok.

  • OK. This is really driving me crazy. I don’t need to be sold on why e-mail is awesome, I tell people this all the time, but what I do need is a good old-fashioned slap across the face with someone screaming, “SNAP OUT OF IT!”

    WHY DOES THE CREATION OF AN E-MAIL NEWSLETTER TERRIFY ME???

    I have had a mail chimp account open for almost five months. I have opened it up, set up my handy-dandy e-mail sign up form. I have opened it up again, looked at it, tweaked it. I repeat this over and over and over again. I have never gotten past this point.

    HELP ME!!!

    I am hoping that I will remember to be back here next week. This is getting ridiculous. I NEED E-MAIL ALREADY!

    I know this is a huge step I am missing.

    Thanks for reading my rant 🙂

    • Natalie says:

      I think everyone is in that boat! I help my mom with her craft show and she’s been collecting email addresses for YEARS and not done a single thing with them. The best plan of action is to start simple – once a month – and just do it 😉

      PS – I think I’ve finally convinced my mom to send an email this year, except I have a feeling this really means I’ll be sending it. lol.

  • Lindsey says:

    Great idea, and something I am going to seriously look into. I had never considered this!

  • Denise says:

    I’ve been thinking about doing an email newsletter. I wasn’t sure how important or beneficial it was. I guess I’ll just have to give it a try and see how it goes! 🙂

  • Emily says:

    My favorite blog newsletters are ones that include highlights and links from the past month, as well as unique content that can’t be found on the blog. That way, I can catch up on the posts I missed, and have added incentive to keep clicking each month. I especially like well designed and personal newsletters. Things like free printables, extra giveaway entries, or coupon codes are great too.

    I subscribe by email and to the newsletter for some blogs, and I don’t mind getting both. I’m sure some people would though, and might unsubscribe from one or the other.

    • Natalie says:

      I think you’ve hit on the most important thing about an email newsletter – you like them if they are relevant to you – if you get something out of them – whether it’s a review of posts or a freebie. That’s what builds loyalty!

  • Jen says:

    This post is so timely for me. I was just thinking that maybe I wanted to put out a newsletter for my blog but I have no idea what to include in it. Can’t wait for next week’s post.

  • I’ve never thought about doing up a newsletter before. How do you get people to sign up for a newsletter? Something in the sidebar?

  • Ya know… I’ve never really thought about doing a newsletter. Sounds like it would be a great idea. I guess I just need to look into it a bit more.

  • Life As Wife says:

    I’m interested to see what people think should be included in a blog newsletter! Can’t wait to read more!

    • Golda Smith says:

      The content depends on your market. Who are the people subscribing and what is their urgent pressing problem? Answer those questions and you’ll be able to create content that they will devour.

  • I haven’t really thought about this. I can’t wait to learn more next week.

  • PartlySunny says:

    Thanks Natalie! I was wondering, do you have any tips to increase email sign-ups? That seems to be my biggest problem. And also, my email subscribers already get an email alerting them to a new post whenever one comes out. Wouldn’t a newsletter be overkill? Are you saying to junk the each-new-post alert in favor of a newsletter?

    Thanks!

    • Natalie says:

      The best way is to give away something free if they sign up. I do a free ecourse. The quickest thing to do to improve sign ups is to put your form in a VERY prominent place on your site.

  • TC Avey says:

    Great advice, I hadn’t thought of using an email newsletter before! I am going to give it a shot! Thanks so much!

  • Amber says:

    Great idea! I’m relatively new to all this (in the grand scheme of things), so I love learning new ways that might help me gain actual readership and help grow my blog!

    • TC Avey says:

      I’m new also, I have to admit it can be a little overwhelming but also very exciting! I am enjoying meeting new people. Good luck with your blog, I’ll give it a look! I welcome you to view my blog as well.

  • Laura @ Hollywood Housewife says:

    Is this in addition to or in replace of your regular email subscribers? Because if someone I read regularly starting sending me both, I would be annoyed enough to unsubscribe. I dont want to bombard the people who support me the most!

    • Natalie says:

      Hi Laura – there’s a difference between your RSS to Email and an email newsletter. I recommend building a list of people that opt-in to your newsletter and not just transferring your RSS people over.

  • Samantha says:

    I’ve been using an email list for three years and have seen tremendous growth in my blog. I definitely have super fans who are loyal to me and want more of what I write. I haven’t started recommending products as an affiliate marketer yet but that is on my to-do list.

    I started out with iContact then moved over to Aweber. I also use Mailchimp for smaller lists.

    I encourage everyone to start an email list on your blog. Write and give away a free ebook to get more subscribers.

  • Great post! I get Jill’s newsletter (ScaryMommy) and love it. Can’t wait to read more about what elements you think are important.