Email Marketing for Bloggers – The Best Insights from Travel Blogging Conferences in the Last 5 Years! [7/10]

Email Marketing for Bloggers - The Best Insights from Travel Blogging Conferences in the Last 5 Years! [7/10] || The Travel Tester
Have you always wondered how you can turn your blog into a business? Then this series is for you!

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In the past 5 years, I’ve visited over 30 (travel) blogging conferences and workshops. That is hours and hours of inspirational and practical advice that helped me turn blogging from a hobby into a full-time business. In this series, I finally open up my notebook to the world and share the insights that I personally found most valuable with you, so you can use them to hopefully make your own blog bigger and better. 

Today, we’re diving into the topic of using your email list and making it work for your blogging business. Enjoy!

 

EMAIL MARKETING FOR BLOGGERS

 

Email Marketing for Bloggers - The Best Insights from Travel Blogging Conferences in the Last 5 Years! [7/10] || The Travel Tester

 

WHAT IS EMAIL MARKETING?

 

What is a Newsletter: 1) You bring in subscribers through a form and put them on a list 2) you get their permission to send them stuff and build trust by providing something they asked for 3) You send them great information by email and add value, so they keep coming back 4) You build a community and communicate with them 5) They click on things that pay you money or make them happy enough to keep coming back

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

People are 2x as likely to sign up for your email list as they are to interact on FB. 72% consumers prefer messages in their inbox. How old is your email strategy?

– Nick Westergaard (STS Kitzbuehel – Sep ’17)

 

Email is still there. It’s a key step between your content and your social media and still the digital glue. Focus on list building!

– Nick Westergaard (STS Kitzbuehel – Sep ’17)

 

Newsletter goals: raising awareness about you/your brand, driving traffic to your website, delivering new/exclusive content, launching a product/campaign, promoting an issue/cause, building a list for the future, earning money…

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Are you using your list to inform or to sell?

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Your purpose is getting readers to open your email and keeping them on your e-zine until they take the action you want them to take.

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

A newsletter is a personal invitation to respond.

– Corey Taratuta and Kerwin McKenzie (TBEX Dublin – September ’13)

 

Your email list supports all your online presence:
* Building community
* Reinforcing brand
* Delivering value
* Communication with audience
* Personal invitation for a reader to respond
* Surveying readers
* Marketing your products
* Sharing ideas

– Corey Taratuta and Kerwin McKenzie (TBEX Dublin – September ’13)

 

Advantages of using email marketing over other media:
* A new blog post could be missed
* Messages on Twitter can get lost in the feed
* Facebook requires pay to play
* On YouTube there is a lot of competition

– Corey Taratuta and Kerwin McKenzie (TBEX Dublin – September ’13)

 

People subscribe to newsletters because they need information, need help solve a problem, want to belong to your group or live through you, want to have hope, want their wishes to come true, want to benefit from something, …

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Write for people who already WANT what you’re offering and give them more of it. What keeps your newsletter readers awake at night? Give it to them! What hurts them? Take away their pain!

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Email Marketing for Bloggers - The Best Insights from Travel Blogging Conferences in the Last 5 Years! [7/10] || The Travel Tester

 

SETTING UP YOUR NEWSLETTER

 

Newsletter Providers: Mailchimp (free under 2000 signups, easy templates, great support, fewer tracking options), Aweber (a bit harder, better tracking, great support, $1 the first month), Constant Contact (try it free).

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Other examples of email marketing services: tinyletter, infusionsoft, autopilot.

– Corey Taratuta and Kerwin McKenzie (TBEX Dublin – September ’13)

 

Don’t use normal email BCC, because this is considered spam.

– Corey Taratuta and Kerwin McKenzie (TBEX Dublin – September ’13)

 

Dual opt-in is the norm: 1- thank you page (reminds people to look in their inbox for the confirmation link) 2- confirmation (this is where they click and confirm) 3- confirmation thank you (this is where you thank them for joining and where you provide them with their incentive and where you ask them to join you on social media).

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Make sure to set expectations on frequency (depends on audience), value (create something people want), resources.

– Corey Taratuta and Kerwin McKenzie (TBEX Dublin – September ’13)

 

Step-by-Step:
1. choose email service
2. create a list
3. create custom forms
4. embed sign-up forms (name + email + submit button) into home page, bottom of post, sidebar, and/or use a Facebook plugin
5. confirmation email (with a link people have to click on)
6. welcome email (ask them a question, for example: what is your biggest question about buying a backpack? this lets people email you back)
7. craft your first email (think about photos, words, links, call to actions)
8. craft a good subject line
9. before you send an email make sure to: proofread, open the mail in mobile, send a test email to yourself, plan the timing
10. evaluate your campaign
11. grow your list (integration in website, incentives (audience specific), exclusive content, resources, collaborations)

– Corey Taratuta and Kerwin McKenzie (TBEX Dublin – September ’13)

 

LIST BUILDING TIPS

 

Set up a squeeze (or landing) page on your site, where you give readers a reason to subscribe + signup box. Tell them why they can’t afford not to (this is a sales page!)

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Email signup forms are invisible so use a lot of them on every page.

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Use a freebie (something your readers need) to get people to sign up for your list and then link through to a resource page (report, eBook, download, discount, etc.)

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Other Pages: Thank you Page (reminds people to look in their inbox for the confirmation link), Confirmation (where people click and confirm), Confirmation Thank you (thank people for joining, provide incentive (giveaway/ report/ white paper/ poster/ ebook/ video/ podcast/ pdf/ discount/ consultation/ …), ask them to join you on social media)

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Most people waste the real estate in Newsletter Signup and Thank You Pages!

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Email Marketing for Bloggers - The Best Insights from Travel Blogging Conferences in the Last 5 Years! [7/10] || The Travel Tester

 

WHAT MAKES A NEWSLETTER EFFECTIVE?

 

Good subject lines: keep it short, make it controversial, use keywords, use numbers and superlatives, newsworthiness and urgency, don’t try to be cute, make it compelling and get to the point!

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Inside your newsletter: stuff that’s new, links to new posts or pictures, teasers, repurposed content, answers to top questions from social or website, call to actions, loads of personality. Give people something they want to share.

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Make sure the images/videos in your newsletter have correct ALT tags.

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

A newsletter should always have a CTA (Call to Action): determine your most wanted response!

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Call to Actions examples of newsletters: buy something, click through to website, affiliate links, join social networks, share stories, enter contest, do something else (sign petition/join group/etc.)

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Autoresponders are triggered emails: you set up emails that go out at regular intervals adhead of time to deliver certain content (mini-course, post series, top 100, how-to, tips, resources, video series, etc.). The first one will arrive right after people sign up.

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

If your list stagnates -rejuvenate it. Check what’s wrong (too promotional, headlines, failing to deliver what readers want, weak CTA, technical problems) and fix it.

– Leyla Giray Alyanak (TBU Nantes – Sep ’14)

 

Email Marketing for Bloggers - The Best Insights from Travel Blogging Conferences in the Last 5 Years! [7/10] || The Travel Tester

 

 

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I hope you read something interesting that you can turn into an action step for your own blogging business. Let me know what your favourite insight was!

 

 

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4 Comments

  • This is a great accumulation of experiences and knowledge. Email marketing has been there for a long time now and a few bloggers I talked to thought that its in the end of its life as a strategy. I always believed that email marketing and sending out newsletters is the most basic and efficient way to get your name out as a blogger. I’ve been using mail chimp for a few years now and still works like a charm. I couldn’t agree more with the last quote “If your list stagnates, rejuvenate it”. Its a matter of mix and match to know whats still good and what needs to be changed. Great read!

  • Thanks for such a relevant information.
    I also do think that E-mail marketing is a very useful tool for bloggers who earn their income by just blogging as a new or rising blogger can attract more evict readers by marketing/advertising their new blogs to interested readers.

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