For months now, I’ve been hearing that bloggers should concentrate on building their email lists. Facebook changes constantly, Google+ is starting to disappear, Twitter is overwhelming, and even Pinterest is asking you to pay to promote your content. Email lists are truly the best way to contact your followers.
So I decided I wanted to my list to grow. But it didn’t.
I tried a few different things:
- A sign up form at the bottom of every blog post.
- A Hello Bar across the top of my blog.
- Sign up forms in my sidebar.
- Free printables for subscribers.
But my list numbers stayed steady. When I posted more frequently, people actually UNsubscribed. (I think I was overwhelming their inboxes.) Not what I wanted to happen.
Finally, I bit the bullet and changed things up. Instead of just sending an RSS blast automatically every time I posted something new, I made a weekly newsletter.
In it, I shared blog posts from the past week, plus two or three from the archives that are seasonal or just popular. I share a turkey recipe (because I am a turkey farmer) and ask a question to help me get to know my readers or get advice from them.
A weekly newsletter is more work, because I put it together manually. And it is a commitment. But it has paid off!
My “open rate” and “click rate” has increased since making the switch. And my subscribers have been growing by leaps and bounds!
I am working on some tutorials for Mailchimp, which I will be posting on my blog, On the Banks of Squaw Creek. So if this sounds too complicated for you, pop on over and I’d be glad to help you out!
And if you want to hear more about life on a turkey farm in Central Iowa, sign up for my email list while you’re there.
Katie Olthoff is a former teacher turned writer, blogger, designer, and social media enthusiast. She blogs about her life on a turkey farm with two little boys and a 100 year old farmhouse at On the Banks of Squaw Creek. Katie also does logo design and blog design for the Blogger platform. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.