How To Get Your First Committed Newsletter Subscribers
To get people to sign up and stay subscribed, you need to promote your newsletter and make sure it stands out from the crowd.
Keeping people with you and you direct the flow of information, a newsletter can become your strongest ally. It helps you present your worldview, what others are doing, share updates and also encourage your audience to get involved to.
Once you know your message and what you recognise you can’t stop (you can read more about defining your values here), it’s time to get others on board and to commit.
To also help you here’s, how to get your newsletter started.
You Don’t Need Everyone
You don’t need to shoot for the moon when you start. Just because others shout about huge numbers, the audience you need is a lot less than you think. You will never be able to sustain the ‘000s that others say they have (and when did they last clean their list?)
In 2009, Seth Godin wrote “First, Ten”. The message resonates over a decade later. “You can no longer market to the anonymous masses. They’re not anonymous and they’re not masses. You can only market to people who are willing participants.”
Seth says you just need ten people. If ten people enjoy what they receive from you and see real worth in what they’re receiving, they’ll go on to tell others about it.
David Spinks keeps this relevance of 10 people in his article, Ten True Regulars. David says, “Ten great regulars can have a positive impact on hundreds or thousands of members. The scalability of community is truly remarkable.” To have your first ten, they need to know you are here!
You need your first loyal subscribers who will stay with you, help you build, stand alongside you and where you both champion each other.
I found this with the YATM newsletter. What started as a group of people subscribing to the Thursday email, became a way for people to be attached. As Jackie Goddard highlights, ‘What started as networking evolved into a community and has transcended into friendship!’ The origin of everything has been the newsletter.
Ways To Get People To Your Side
People like to belong somewhere they feel valued, seen and heard. If you can bring others together through the narrative you develop and share, then you’re creating something that will help you and your business in the long term.
Investing in yourself and your business is a rewarding endeavor, it doesn’t have to be financial, more about time. Putting in the hard work, creating and developing, and consistently sharing a narrative that will eventually lead to all sorts of personal and business benefits.
Once you are set up with what you want to say and you’re going to keep to a schedule, mine is every Thursday, let’s get people subscribing to you.
Here are nine actions to put in place. Hope this helps your efforts
Make A Compelling Sign-Up Page
You have to be clear on the benefit someone will receive. You can’t say, ‘subscribe for updates’ or ‘receive our newsletter.’ Describe what your newsletter covers and set expectations by letting subscribers know how often they can expect to receive it and what types of content will be included. Keep your message concise and down to earth, and consider including testimonials or from existing subscribers to build credibility and encourage new sign-ups.
Make It Ever Present On Your Website
Getting people to sign up, should not just be reserved to one place, you need to give someone every opportunity to commit. Make it a part of your navigation with the word ‘subscribe’ so it has its own page and even as the footer throughout your site. You don’t need pop-ups, just places where there can be a natural pause, such as the end of a blog article with a prompt to subscribe.
Now Replicate To Your Social Channels
In your bio link directly to your sign-up page, not your homepage. LinkedIn now allows you to add this in your bio. Progressing beyond just your bio, for new connections share your subscribe page to new connections. You get into the habit of continually drawing people to your landing page. What you are sharing is going to be of use to someone else, you’re not crowbarring in a call or looking to sell a product/service.
Find Your Alpha Audience
Close contacts with whom you have a strong relationship are always going to be good people to approach. Share what you are doing and ask if it’s ok to include them. Alternatively, make it easy to sign up by sending them to your subscribe page. As you progress, you can reach out to them again and ask if there are people from their circle who would find your work useful.
Partner With Others (and cross promotions)
Recognise and find others who have a similar audience, and figure out how you can work together. If your work is relevant and of use to someone else, even better. When it also comes to partnerships, go a bit deeper on your chosen field of expertise and find the sources that can elevate your work. Again, this is about creating relevant work for a similar audience that is going to raise your credibility. Make sure your newsletter subscribe page is the call to action on other sites.
Promote Day Before You Publish
If you have put the time and effort into creating, tell people what everyone is going to receive. Many people promote their newsletter with just the main themes, after the newsletter has been sent. Here you are being specific, so you prompt people to step up and sign up. By highlighting the sections and ideas that readers can expect to take away from each issue, you’ll make your newsletter feel like a magazine and increase its appeal to potential subscribers.
Ask People To Share (Add A Link In Your Newsletter)
At the bottom of the YATM newsletter, I ask others to promote. If people enjoy your work and read something useful to them or their contacts, they are more obliged to share with others. People are more likely to share something if they know the person who wrote it, so make sure your work feels familiar and welcoming.
Promote Other People In Your Newsletter
When you give others a space to introduce themselves, you also encourage them to tell other people. By asking other people to participate they are more likely to be appreciative, thankful and be public that spending time and subscribing to you is going to be worthwhile.
Every Thursday someone from the YATM community starts with the YATM Takeover and they are the first person people see. I then send to those who start the newsletter, a visual if they would like to say that they started. You have to look at your newsletter as a joint effort, that way everyone can feel a part of it (and likely to share it).
Repurpose As A LinkedIn Newsletter
Let people know that you’re best work is when people subscribe as it contains perks they won’t get elsewhere, but a LinkedIn Newsletter can be a way to edit what you have shared previously. One thing I don’t do is send the YATM newsletter and then within 24 hours it is a LinkedIn newsletter, that devalues the whole promise and people may as well just see on LinkedIn. Tease people and use LinkedIn as a way to drive people back to you.
Bitesize quick wins that can take you five minutes.
— Add your subscribe page to your email footer, every email sent is a constant reminder to others.
— Ask people to subscribe when you meet face to face and then email them the URL (or add their email in your notes/Evernote when they’ve said ok). Even better have a QR code of your landing page, save it and then share when you are with someone).
— Turn your newsletter URL into a QR code, this is so it’s available in every shape and form (you can then add the QR code to presentation slides.
Promoting your newsletter shouldn’t become a to-do list, it’s part of your ongoing efforts to find the right people and you grow from the work that you own.
Having resources can give you reach ie. paid social ads, but being resourceful encourages your creative muscle. When you are resourceful, you can find ways to do more with less and get the most out of what you have. With a little bit of creativity, you can create something amazing that people want to be a part of.
Your ultimate goal is to create a strong connection with others, but you don’t have to start with everyone, find your regulars.
These regulars will become the core of your community and will help you build a strong foundation for the future. They will be the ones who will help you grow and develop and they will be the ones who will help you reach your goals. It all starts by getting started, finding ways to attract others and they know they are stepping into the right place.