One of the major items on my list of blog enhancements this year was the creation and implementation of a newsletter. With the proficiency of social media, there’s evidence of declining numbers of actual blog “readers,” and I’ve even had people say before they actually go to my blog, they look at my Instagram feed first to know exactly what I’ve posted. Not to mention, there’s MORE content housed on my Instagram that doesn’t even go onto the blog. So that left me questioning why I am I even putting all of this work into my blog if people are going to my Instagram first?
Well, mainly because there’s so much that the Instagram-only audience is missing out on! Thus the affirmation that my newsletter must come to life. The newsletter is a way for me to condense the blog material and give everyone a quick overview of the posts that might interest them that week right in their inbox making it easy for them to find and navigate new content. Here’s how I started my newsletter, The Lovely List, in 2016. (Keep scrolling and click to read full post!)
Have you joined The Lovely List yet? You can subscribe on the right sidebar ——->
First, I did some mail provider research and talked to others who have already started their own newsletter and decided that Mailchimp would be the easiest platform to start collecting email subscribers and building a database of templates – I’m technically the newbie at this whole thing, and Mailchimp seemed to be the easiest in terms of setup and not to mention FREE which is super important considering I have no idea what I’m doing yet!
My blog template had always included “subscribe” field on my sidebar, but to be honest, I had no idea what exactly they were subscribing to – scary right? I did some searching and found where those email addresses had actually been stored as people submitted their information into the form – which was awesome because it meant that I was starting my newsletter database with actual people ready to receive emails from me!
The Lovely List button on my sidebar now collects email addresses and adds them directly to my Mailchimp account. (It’s pretty basic right now, but I’m still getting into the customization part.) And so far, I’ve sent two actual newsletter emails this year which doesn’t seem like a lot yet, but I consider them test emails as I’m still nailing down what my header needs to look like and what content I actually want to include.
One of the great things about Mailchimp is that it will tell me exactly how many people opened their email and how many actually clicked on any of the links inside that would have possibly put them onto my site. This is great data to see what people are clicking on to get to the site, and in turn, I can continue to put more emphasis on those content areas.
This also leads me to ask – what do YOU want to see in the newsletter? Is it a question and answer session, curling wand tips, quotes of the day, favorite drugstore beauty products, all of the above? Shoot me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org telling me what you want to know!