How to grow your newsletter list
It’s no secret here, my blog has been the best way to promote my business, and attract my ideal clients. The process goes like this:
- Create a blog post packed with valuable info for my ideal clients
- Design a compelling branded blog post
- Pin blog post image to Pinterest
- Potential reader/client clicks through from Pinterest
- Reads my blog post and finds valuable info
- … then what?
My first few months of blogging I didn’t develop a strategy for step #6. I didn’t have the call to action. My readers loved my content, found value in it, but I lacked a reason for them to stick around. Because of this lack of strategy, I potentially lost loyal readers, clients and sales. Instead of hiding this mistake from the world, I thought I would teach you how you can avoid this pitfall!
Create a Reason For Them to Stick Around
Learn from my mistakes, and have a strategy in place for your blog. Define the steps you want your readers to take once they read your killer content. Are you just trying to drive traffic to your site? That is absolutely okay! Do you want them to subscribe to Bloglovin’? Purchase your products? Or, my favorite, subscribe to your newsletter? Whatever your purpose is, define that first and create an action plan to direct your audience.
My Favorite Strategy
There are countless ways to build a loyal audience, but my favorite has been through my newsletter. I love the engagement through this weekly email to my readers, and it really allows me to get to know you guys better. I’ve even made some great friends through this newsletter, as 21st century as that sounds!
Aside from the stellar community, you can’t deny the statistics of engagement through email versus any other platform. People will read their email at a much higher rate than they will view your tweet, instagram, or Pinterest. It’s just that simple. Newsletter = a direct connection to your audience. So why not take advantage of this strategy for your own business? Since inboxes have a higher retention rate than your blog, or any social media platform, you will have a much higher rate of conversions for sales, webinar sign-ups and clients.
Okay… so I convinced you to start paying attention to your newsletter! Great, we are all on the same page now :). I, maybe like yourself, already knew how valuable a newsletter was before I started my business. It was one of the first things I did as a business, was to create a Mailchimp account. I thought that through providing a sign-up in my sidebar, footer and contact page I was doing pretty good at promoting it. I couldn’t be more wrong. Though it seems like those places would have a high conversion rate, my site proved that theory wrong. I learned you have to ASK people to subscribe in order to get subscribers. But, you can’t simply say “hey, would you mind signing up for my newsletter?” That might compel a few people to join your list, but it really isn’t a powerful strategy.
Instead, I have a solution for you that will not only bring increased value to your readers, but also grow your list like crazy.
Provide Valuable Specific Upgrades
Rather than “asking” your audience to subscribe, “give” your audience something that will compel them to subscribe. Enter: the content upgrade.
Over the past few months, I have increased my newsletter list drastically, primarily through content upgrades on blog posts. Essentially, content upgrades are free downloads relating specifically to your blog post. The reader gets to exchange their email address, in return for bonus material relating to your blog post. Rather than having one generic opt-in for your blog, you create specific bonuses that add value to your free content. For example: I recently wrote about 10 ways to create share-worthy design. I provided a lot of value in that post for FREE, but also included a bonus download for readers who wanted more. The bonus was a blog branding style guide. See what I did there? If you enjoyed the blog post, the action step was to create a blog style guide… which I provided to readers in exchange for their email address.
This strategy works much better than having a generic e-book opt-in after each post, and my list growth is proof of that. It also tailors your newsletter list to attract a niche audience, rather than a wide-range of subscribers.
Content upgrades also allow for a higher click-through rate from Pinterest. If your blog post image shows the added value (see this blog post image above), pinners will want to click through to receive the bonus material! Since Pinterest is my highest source of traffic to my blog, I’m all about increasing click-throughs from this valuable platform.
How to Easily Create Content Upgrades
Though this sounds simple enough, you might be asking “how do I actually do this?” I’m not going to lie, it can get messy if you don’t understand the tools and system to manage these upgrades. Creating multiple email lists, syncing them together, setting up auto-responders, promoting the upgrade throughout the post, etc. It can get a bit overwhelming.
Rather than just mention that you should have content upgrades, I thought it would be helpful to SHOW you my process from beginning to end on how to design + manage content upgrades. I recognize that a lot of times these content upgrades can appear aggressive, cluttered & salesy. I have created a process that adds value to your content, and enhances the reader experience rather than takes away from it.
New Workshop! Designing Content Upgrades
Previously, I hosted a live workshop all about designing content upgrades, sharing my step-by-step process, and help you start growing your newsletter list today, in a well-designed way. I am now selling the recording + workbook for instant access!
Are you ready to start growing your email list, but are hung up on the process? Maybe you already have traffic to your site, and are ready to start building your newsletter list! I have grown my list from 150 to 1,072 in about 60 days, primarily through content upgrades. I streamlined my process to make adding content upgrades to your blog a breeze, so you can start growing your list today. LeadPages is an essential tool in offering content upgrades, though the design can often appear cluttered & distracting. In this workshop, I dive into my step-by-step process, including the tools I use, an insight into what has worked best for me, as well as my designer insight into structuring your blog for highest conversion, while also looking beautifully branded.
I’m going to show you:
- How to design beautiful LeadPage templates
- How to quickly create content upgrades for your blog
- How to design your blog post, with high conversion + a beautiful layout
- Statistics of which content upgrades work best for my blog, and why
- How to start growing your newsletter list TODAY
The tools I will cover: LeadPages, Mailchimp (or another newsletter provided), any design software for images + PDFs
This is a recording of a previously live workshop! Students have already seen increases in their newsletter list, in a beautifully branded way!