Why I’m focusing on my mailing list in 2019
Happy new year! Have you set any goals yet?
Normally, at this time of year, I’m full on into workbooks and notebooks and big plans for the year ahead. This year, I’ve been trying to piece mine together more slowly.
Partly because I’m actually taking a course about planning the year, and partly because my life is a bit in flux right now, so I’m trying to be kind to myself and not think too far ahead into the future.
But there is one thing I do want to focus on this year: my mailing list.
As part of my author mentoring programme, I’ve been doing a monthly check-in with the authors to see how they are getting on, and if there are any areas they need help in. I also decided that there were a few things I had more to say about, so I’ve been sending some ‘bonus material’ each month. The most recent thing I’ve been writing is on mailing lists.
I’ve seen, through work, through the two lists I run (my monthly email where I share personal stories and links I’ve loved, and the Unsung Books email, which sends out book recommendations every couple of weeks), and through my own behaviour, just how effective newsletters can be. The ones I subscribe to are little beams of light in my inbox, and I feel a strong connection to the people who send them.
And, as I was writing the best practice guide for the authors, channelling all the things I’ve learnt over the years, and all the things I know you’re supposed to do, I realised I barely did any of them myself! At work, sure. On the blog? Not so much.
So, my only goal for 2019 (so far) is to sort out my newsletter. To finally write a thank you email, to pull together some content that is exclusive to people to subscribe, and to focus on building it steadily throughout the year. I’m keeping it monthly, for now, but feel like I’ve had just an explosion of ideas for things I want to talk about, so it might become slightly more regular later on in the year.
I want to make my newsletter something that people love getting in their inbox, that I get loads of response to, that is interesting and fun to read. I also want to make it useful, so that there’s something people can DO off the back of receiving it. I’ve taken inspiration from some of my favourite emails, listed below, but I’d love to know: What do you love about the emails you’re subscribed to? What would you like me to share in mine? What do you send out in your own newsletter? Leave a comment below or ping me a message.
Some of my favourite email newsletters
- Mel Wiggins’ The Understory.
- Sas Petherick’s Notes from the Path.
- Robyn Wilder’s Up With the Kids (sign up to The Pool’s email, then select it as your newsletter preference)
- Susannah Conway’s Love Letters
What unites them? Well, firstly, they all have a NAME, rather than ‘sign up for my newsletter’. I like that idea, so I’ve nicked it (the newsletter name is now called Noted)
They all feel like getting an email from someone I know really well. They all have interesting links to a wide variety of articles, books, recipes, and all sorts. They are all LONG. I save them up for when I have time to read them. I hope that by the end of the year, one or two people say the same thing about mine!
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