Tell me if this sounds familiar: You read somewhere (maybe even on this blog) that it’s important for bloggers to have an email list. So like a good little blogger, you put up a hello bar , newsletter pop-up or a subscribe button on your blog and for the past months (maybe even years!) you’ve been collecting emails and doing NOTHING with them. Absolutely Nothing!
Don’t worry, you are not alone. I am even guilty of this! Here are a few reasons that bloggers fail to take advantage of an email list:
- You don’t know WHAT to send to your list
- You don’t want to annoy your list
- You don’t know how often you should send to your list
- You think it’s a hassle to create a newsletter
- And if we are being very honest…some of us don’t even know how to use the email service we are already using.
If you said “Guilty” to any of those reasons, then you are in the right place! Today I’m going to share a quick tip on figuring out how often to email your subscribers plus a list of 5 excuses to email your list.
How Often Should you Email Your List
Well isn’t that the million dollar question? And while it’s different for almost every blogger…I will let you in on a secret. I am a firm believer that there is no magic number….you could send an email once a week, 10x a week or 3x a day…..as long as you train your audience to receive your emails. What does that mean exactly? You need to give your audience clear expectations of how often they will hear from you and then remain consistent with that schedule. That, my friends, is the key to getting your emails opened, to higher click-through rates and to better performing emails.
You must train your audience!
Here’s an example of 3 different email schedules from different niche bloggers:
1. Hip2Save is a couponing deal site and posts between 40-60 blog posts a day. She sends out a newsletter every day with her deal updates.
2. Ruth Soukup from Living Well Spending Less sends an email every Friday which includes a thoughtful lesson and links to her latest blog posts.
3. Neil Patel sends out an email list 2-3x a week with a link to his latest blog updates.
I subscribe to all 3 of these lists..and I’m perfectly fine with their schedule. Because I have come to expect those emails from them daily, weekly or a few times a week.
What I’m trying to say is that it’s more important to set a schedule and stay consistent than it is to worry about how often you should be emailing them. Train them to expect emails from you by being consistent.
5 Super Smart Excuses to Email your List
Figuring out WHAT to send your list is just as important as how often you should send an email. Some bloggers like to send out a daily digest while others prefer to reserve their communications for promotional purposes. Once again, your frequency and your topics will largely depend on your niche and your email goals.
In this section, we’ll take a look at a few of my favorite email examples from some of my favorite bloggers. Below you’ll find 5 different reasons you could reach out to your audience.
1. Oh look a new blog post!
If someone signs up for your blog newsletter, they probably expect to be updated whenever you update your blog! So at the very least..you should do that! 😉 You’ll first need to decide how often to send out updates and here’s a quick and dirty guide to figuring that out:
- If you only blog once or twice a week, then sending out a blog post each time you update your blog is a great idea.
- If you are blogging 3-5 times a week, you might want to wait and do a single weekly update.
- Alternatively, if you produce a lot of content on a daily basis or are in the business of breaking news or time sensitive content (like a coupon or deal blogger) sending out a daily update is probably the best option.
Remember it’s up to you to train your readers!
Above you can see one of my favorite examples of a blog post update is the one that Neil Patel does. It’s short and sweet. Text based and super simple to read and get his point across.
2. Share a thought-provoking message
Some bloggers choose to craft really personal emails and share a thought provoking message or valuable lesson. This is a great idea if you have the time because it helps your readers get to know you on another level and elevates you to somewhat of a thought leader (or sharer!).
Someone who does this well, is Ruth Soukup. Each Friday I can expect an email from her with a lesson learning moment. She also attaches her latest blog posts at the bottom of each email. I really look forward to her emails because I know that I’m going to learn something or she will cause me to think, both of which I appreciate in an email.
3. Share something you found interesting
One of the goals in sending an email to your list is to connect with them. If you have to read or find something that you think will really resonate with your audience there is no harm in sending them a quick link and a few thoughts about it. Ann Friedman does a great job with her weekly emails where she sends out an email with a list of interesting links to other people’s content. Her readers have come to trust that her emails will always be informative and entertaining.
4. Promotion Time!
So there will be the occasion when you will be promoting something. Maybe it’s a free webinar you’re hosting or maybe you’ve been invited to speak at a conference and you would love your email list to know about it. These emails are pretty typical in the online world. So if you’ve got something cool going on, it’s a great opportunity to email your list and let them know about it. Pictured above is a fun email from Allison from Wonderlass promoting her upcoming webinar.
5. Free Goodies!
Kayla from IvoryMix emails me every month with a fresh set of free stock photos and I absolutely LOVE getting this email on the first of the month! If you are putting together some quality content like checklists, menu plans, worksheets, freebies you’ll definitely want to reach out to your audience and share the goodies! They’ll be appreciative of it.
BONUS – And then sometimes it’s time to say Goodbye….
Sometimes you’ve got to clean house…and yes I’m still talking about your email list. If you have a percentage of your email list subscribers who NEVER open your emails…it might be time to take them off your list. Removing people from your email list is good for a couple of reasons, first it cleans up your subscriber list leaving only dedicated and enthusiastic readers, but also because most email service rates are based on total subscriber numbers, there is no reason that you should be paying to keep someone on your list if they haven’t opened up in an email in a year. See what I’m saying?
So if you do in fact think it’s time to clean house, you have two options, you can just delete the emails that haven’t opened in a while, or you can do what I like to do and that is send out a ‘warning’ email to them. Something along the lines of “You haven’t opened our emails in about 6 months. If you’d like to continue to receive our emails, please click here”. Give the subscribers about a week and if they haven’t responded, then delete them from your list. Above I’ve included an example email from John Lee Dumas.