Your Biggest Weapon In Keeping New Newsletter Subscribers

Over the past couple of days, I have talked about the importance of having a newsletter on your blog and how to attract readers to sign up for your newsletter by giving up their valuable email address. One of the main concerns amongst bloggers is how to keep those subscribers once you have closed them on subscribing to your blog.

In all reality, it is pretty easy to keep your subscribers and continue to provide value that they soak up like sun on blacktop if you follow some pretty simple rules. You also need to remember one thing…

People do not mind being sold to (especially if it is something they need), but they hate spam.

Follow Up Email: First Point Of Contact

The follow up email (email that is sent directly after subscription is confirmed) is your most valuable weapon to keep your subscribers and most bloggers overlook this step as a formality. This first point of contact with a new subscriber is your change to lay out the foundation of your newsletter. It is also one of your most successful emails you will have with your newsletter (from a percentage open perspective), so it is time to grab their attention.

Your follow up email needs to keep these things in mind.

  • It needs to deliver the free goods you promised upon signup (or a link to download them).
  • It needs to welcome the new reader to your newsletter and thank them for being a part of your community.
  • It needs to specifically lay out exactly what they need to expect from your emails.
  • It needs to reinforce the personal touch by you talking directly to them…not formal broad statements.

It is really that simple. You are basically laying out exactly what your new newsletter subscriber can expect to see in their inbox from your blog. You are entering their personal world through their personal email inbox, so make the email sound and feel like you are talking directly to one person.

Important Note: You are not selling anything with the initial follow-up email. I see a lot of bloggers make the mistake of trying to close the sale when your reader is really just trying to get a grasp of what to expect. You can include links to your paid products below your signature or causally mention that you have other products on the web, but this is not the time to try to put on the hard sale. It will convert poorly and put a bad taste in the mouth of your new subscriber. Selling comes later (and I’ll get into that more in a later post).

Simple Follow Up Example

Here is a sample follow up email that I worked up on the fly so you can get the point of what I am talking about.

John Doe,

Thank you for signing up for the Gardening Tips newsletter! Attached you will find your free eBook, “5 Gardening Tips You Didn’t Know” as a thank you for joining our community at Gardening Tips.

So what can you expect out of the Gardening Tips Newsletter? I will be sending you exclusive tips that can not be found on the site twice a month to help you further grow your garden. You will also be receiving periodic deals and promotions that should help you save some money on your gardening gear needs. Also be on the lookout for bi-weekly blog updates to keep you up-to-date on the goings on at Gardening Tips.

I am excited to have you as a member of our community at Gardening Tips, so if you have any questions, concerns, ideas or random thoughts, hit me up via email.

Thank you,

John The Gardening Guy

Pretty simple right? It isn’t obscenely long and it gets the point across. Better yet…it hits all of the points I made above quickly and efficiently. Now…what do you think happens when the next email comes across John Doe’s email inbox? He is probably more likely to open it and absorb your content because he already knows what to expect and is looking forward to the next email because it is going to provide him value in relation to his gardening.

So What Is Your Job After The Follow Up Email?

Start delivering on the promises you laid out in your follow up email and do it consistently. Luckily, with the follow up email process laid out in Aweber, you can setup this entire process and leave it on auto-pilot. One of the things that completely streamlined my blogging was my newsletter and the hands off approach it takes in improving your blog and income after initial setup. You are providing value and consistency without having to touch a thing.

So…next up on the chopping block for newsletter talk is how to actually monetize this thing and we will get into that on Monday.

Newsletter Series Recap

Sign Up For Aweber By Clicking Here (get started for only $1!)

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TheInfoPreneur April 16, 2010 - 7:02 am
Brother I do this, I was just wondering your thoughts on creating value in the on going broadcasts after this?
Robb Sutton April 16, 2010 - 7:03 am
That is coming up in the next posts. When I started formulating this series...I realized it was going to have to be split up due to length.
Mike Tiojanco April 16, 2010 - 12:04 pm
Hey Rob, Really enjoying the newsletter series. Plenty of stuff for me to work on this weekend. Quick question - looking at your sign up box in your sidebar "RSS Subscription options" - is the email signup right there a newsletter signup, or just a feedburner email signup? Do you find you get more newsletter signups by combining the 2? Seriously, good stuff - looking forward to the next post.
Robb Sutton April 16, 2010 - 12:06 pm
That field is for Feedburner RSS via email that is delivered every day. I keep the newsletter and RSS separate for daily delivery for that reason.
Jarrod@ Optimistic Journey April 17, 2010 - 10:49 am
I can't wait to get my email list started. I'm writing my first incentive ebook, the ebook I'll offer as an incentive to subscribing to my newsletter, and I can't wait to get it published. After reading this post I'm anxious to get my newsletter started. Thanks, Robb, for providing such valuable information!!
Robb Sutton April 18, 2010 - 6:25 am
Jarrod. Get it up as soon as possible. It will grow your business exponentially.
Imran Yousaf April 18, 2010 - 2:27 am
I liked you way of presenting the idea with practicle example. Its really a good idea to offer something valueable after your confirming your subscribers. And if we offer them other free but valuable stuff via e-mail from time to time, i am sure list would not shrink, rather your e-mail list will have maximum reach count. Good work Robb.
Robb Sutton April 18, 2010 - 6:26 am
It's all about being upfront and honest. If you keep to that...everything turns out great.
Maren Kate April 18, 2010 - 4:35 pm
i like it, I only have the follow up so far - but i need to get the weekly or bi monthly newsletter into gear so I can really capitalize on the attention that the subscribers are giving. Great post!
alex April 20, 2010 - 11:45 pm
OMG! OK so if I ask you what tomorrows lotto numbers will be, I can expect to hit refresh and you will have apost detailing it? I was wondering about what I should be using in terms of content for my newsletter as I am only one person and writing posts, a full time job and two kids under 2 give me no extra time at all, but thankyou Rob for outlining the basics of email content. I can definitely leverage what I have already written to create a bi monthly newsletter for my potential subscribers
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