1. No matter what your business model is, your newsletter success is likely determined by the strength of the community you’re building.
Many of the most successful newsletters are, in fact, successful communities. Many writers manage to bring back the vibe of the old internet, focused on engagement, and bringing people together, around a (niche) topic.
One big takeaway from this issue:
A good starting point is shifting focus from list size to engagement. Instead of having as many subscribers as possible, you want to have as many engaged readers as possible. People who read your issues regularly, who take the time to reply with questions and ideas, who you feel comfortable talking to. Revue makes this easy by showing you the number of engaged readers over time, broken down by engagement levels. Learn more here.
Check out the full issue for examples, more tips, and more. Click here.
2. Consider a pop-up newsletter. Pop-ups are a more limited commitment, and they allow you to tap into new niches.
A pop-up newsletter covers a very specific event, typically something that has the power to draw intense interest for a limited time, like a big sports event such as the Olympics, or a news story such as an election. It runs as long as that topic is interesting, and then… it just stops.
One thing I’ve learned writing this issue: A pop-up forces you to think about promotion in a new way, a more aggressive way to be specific. If your pop-up is tied to a particular event, and therefore time-sensitive, you might not have time to build a faithful following over a long time. Promote it everywhere you can think of before you launch, emphasizing the time sensitivity and the particular value you’ll bring to readers.
One additional thing: From the get-go, it’s good to think about how you can serve the subscribers of a pop-up newsletter when it has run its course.
3. To improve your Open Rate, examine closely the three things your readers see first: ‘From’ name, subject line, “pre-header.”
This issue topped our list of the most successful ones. And it’s no surprise: Inspiring your readers to open the emails you send them, is one of every newsletter writers’ main jobs.
Three things to take away from this issue:
- Every email inbox will show a ‘From’ field as well as a subject line. Use the ‘From’ name to your advantage: it’s a great way to build brand recognition.
- When it comes to your subject line, keep it short. 6-10 words is the sweet spot. It will be easier to grasp as a concept for the reader, and it’s less likely to be cut off by the recipient’s email program if they’re reading on a laptop or a big screen.
- The pre-header is the short line of text that follows the subject line when viewing an email preview in an inbox. They are so often a missed opportunity in the newsletter world. Essentially, they’re an extra chance to engage your reader before they open the newsletter.
These are the three takeaways from the most opened issues this year. So glad you liked these, and I would love to hear about your big learnings. What was the most impactful thing about writing your newsletter you have started doing this year so far? Reply to this newsletter to let me know.
Before I go, a new thing to discover this week: