My value proposition remains unchanged: saving time for professional React developers who are already familiar with React and need to stay up to date.
I try to differentiate myself from my big American competitors with more relevant comments, a better understanding of the React ecosystem, highlighting trends and weak signals.
I probably don’t make it easy for myself: I prefer to have a smaller but very qualified audience.
Beginning of 2021:
- ReactHebdo: 1357 subscribers
- ThisWeekInReact: 0 subscribers
- Twitter: 4246 followers
End of 2021:
- ReactHebdo: 2352 subscribers (+995)
- ThisWeekInReact: 1945 subscribers (+1945)
- Twitter: 12571 followers (+8325)
- The newsletter in French is growing slowly (+20/week)
- The newsletter in English started well (1st edition end of Octobre 2021 with 1000 subscribers), and is growing much faster (+100/week)
- My Twitter account exploded (+160/week)
I also started a LinkedIn newsletter
(🇫🇷) : 5500 subscribers in 2 weeks 🤪 incredible my entire network has been invited, but I think there is a lot of noise: duplicate subscribers, my family, recruiters … LinkedIn does not give any information on this audience: we are stuck on their platform.
The format has changed a bit:
I don’t know if it’s really better than before? 🤷♂️ Don’t hesitate to tell me what you think.
I would love to put more images, but Gmail often truncates longer emails, so I can’t put a lot of images and text at the same time.
I also want to include some evergreen articles instead of just commenting the news, but not sure how yet.
At the beginning, I did my curation work on the fly and on weekends, and I wrote the newsletter + the twitter thread on Mondays.
In the end, I decided to devote myself seriously to this project, with a hard limit of 2 days per week.
I now concentrate all my curation on a single day to avoid being distracted on the other days. I subscribe to lots of other newsletters, and I use Twitter filters
(I created a Twitter list
with interesting accounts). It’s a bit chaotic, but it works.
- Monday 9h-13h: superficial curation, scanning many articles, saving things that seem interesting to Pocket
- Monday 14h-19h: adding the most interesting links to the newsletter draft, reading articles more carefully, writing notes and draft comments
- Tuesday 9h-13h: writing the final version in French
- Tuesday 14h-16h: creating the thread Twitter and images
- Tuesday 16h-17h: last review + English translation
- Tuesday 17h: send the 2 newsletters and the Twitter thread
- Tuesday 17-19h: promotional activity, marketing
It doesn’t look like that, but this newsletter takes a lot of time 😅 and it therefore has a direct impact on my freelance turnover. That’s why I’m trying to make this activity sustainable.
Note that it includes curation and reading time, on which I’m very easily distracted and I tend to follow non-React rabbit holes 😂
In my opinion, 2 days is way too much: I spend a lot of time on tiny details that you probably don’t even care about. I also feel guilty if I miss any interesting link. I need to apply Pareto’s law better and try to reduce this time to 1 day per week (like it was in the beginning).
Sponsoring & ROI
The French newsletter already accepts job and product sponsors
I have a preference for job offers: a good offer is relevant content for my audience. The typical case: a startup that recruits a React-Native dev pays € 400 to have an ad for 4 editions. This may sound like a lot, but it’s quite similar to the rates charged by my big US competitors.
This French newsletter brought me 4050€ HT in 2021.