If you want to make money in 2013, you want to bookmark this series
I’ll show you how to make more than $200 with your newsletter through your blog and then pay for your Aweber subscription
Part 1: Define Your Newsletter
Writing is one thing, writing for a blog is another and writing for your newsletter is a completely different ball game. I’ve been struggling with this issue for a long time: how do you make your newsletter content different than your blog content? A post is a post, right? So how would you know when to publish it on your blog versus when to publish it on your newsletter? Here’s my answer: you gotta write killer content that makes money. This is the question we will try to answer today, sounds cool, isn’t?
There is a specific set of rules when it comes down to writing killer content that makes money. Writing epic stuff is cool but it doesn’t always bring in the dough. And if you are simply writing content with the obvious purpose of making money; you will upset your readers and won’t make much money. Sure there are always going to be some freeloaders who will be offended by the fact that you are using affiliate links or that you are giving a good plug on one of your products. But hell, they just have to get their free information elsewhere .
I’m sure you have tons of great ideas and tons of great products to talk about. But you have to keep your mind focused on the 1 single action per post you want to trigger from your audience. Here are a few actions to choose from that you may want a reader to do:
Subscribe to another newsletter
Click on an existing article on your blog
Submit their email for free software (like Mint) or free information
Buy your own product
Buy someone else’s product (using an affiliate link)
Vote for you in a contest
Answer back and provide feedback
Forward your email to one of their friends
As you can see, there are tons of actions that a reader could do when you send an email. The thing is that most people are trying to achieve 2, 3 even 4 goals in the same email. What do you do when you get an overload of information or choices? Yeah… you close that window because it’s too much info at the same time. So here’s where your email goes when it’s not targeted:
Ok… I’m sure you have your reason already. But if it’s part of the following list, just scrap it and start over:
It’s a good product
It has so and so feature
I recommend it
I use it
You always been helpful and it’s a good way the reader can help you
Instead, answer this simple question:
It’s a simple question with a tough answer. You need to find how the email that you send will help your reader’s life. How will it solve a problem, simplify their life or resolve a fear. For example, the series I’m currently writing could definitely fit this criterion as this article shows you how to make money. If you are a TFB newsletter subscriber, you ultimately want to make more money. So this series is a perfect fit with it.
People LOVE stories. They want to be told about that one time… they want to be able to picture your story in their mind so they can clearly understand what you are saying. Telling you that I’m making money with my newsletter is easy. But you can’t really put yourself into my shoes and imagine that you are making money with your newsletter. Hell, you don’t even have one!
What if I tell you that I started with a 0 subscriber mailing list and that I first wrote a free eBook to convince people to subscribe. Then, I started to write timeless content to send to my subscribers once in a while. Each month, I saw my newsletter subscribers increasing by 300 or more because I was doing a lot of promotion around my free book. One day, I got an email from a paid newsletter network asking me if I wanted to run a campaign for them. I setup four emails to be sent over a month each one week apart. Each week, the guy was sending me a report telling how many subscribers I generated. If I was able to reach 100, I would get an addition 15% commission. I was at 80 after three weeks and there was no way I was ending under 100 and miss out on that 15% commission bonus! I sent emails to my blogger friends and used all my newsletters (even the ones that are not about investing) and spread a massive (borderline spammy ) email to everyone and finally got the final report showing… 110 sales!
Now you can picture yourself in my shoes, working on your computer, hoping to crush the 100 bar and finally get that big fat check of $2,788.50. This is the kind of story that you want to write about! It makes it easy for your readers to want what you tell them about:
Buy their first house
Be debt free
Tell their boss to take his job and shove it
Make money online
Become their own boss
Tell their wife they can quit their job
Have the vacation of their dreams within budget
Learn a new language in 30 days
Lose 30 pounds and look like Bradley Cooper (I can’t… I’m bald! Haha!)
My best posts on TFB are often about my own real stories. If I want my readers to react, I have to pull out a story and tell them about it.
This is probably the hardest part of your email. How can you be original and creative with your email? How can you shine from the thousands emails your readers receive every day? Once again, easy question, tough answer! There is one thing I know though: it starts with the title of your email.
I once read that Arianna Huffington, founder of the Huffington Post, would change the title of an article 10 times before publishing it. Why? Because she was constantly looking for a catchy phrase. Something that would make anybody click on that line instead of skipping to the next news item. Working on your title will definitely be a key point to your success in your newsletter. With Aweber, you have the option to send split messages. This means that you can either simply change the title or the whole email. With this feature, you can send the same email to all your readers but 25% of your readers will receive the title A, 25% will get the title B and so on.
From my experience, you can get some big differences in the opening rate and clicking rates by the way you present your email.
Don’t be afraid to try new concepts, make analogies, and write thought provoking stuff. This is how you will get the attention from your readers and as long as you are making sense, they won’t think you are just doing this to draw some attention to your site!
So you found which kind of action you want your email to trigger from your readers. You found the reason why they will do it. You have found the “button” to push. Then, you wrap it up with a nice story that will engage your readers and have them follow you on your path. What’s missing? Ten thousand opportunities to trigger that action!
All right, that’s a bit of an exaggeration. But if you only suggest the action at the beginning of the email or at the end, you only get a fraction of people who will take action. Unless you are a marketing genius, chances are that you don’t know exactly when people are ready to click and take action. This is why you need to hammer your message over and over again and offer multiple opportunities to take action. You should at least put three links in your email: one at the beginning, one in the middle and one at the end of your article.
Trigger happy readers won’t even finish your email and click on the first link they see (you would be surprise to see how many readers click on the first line of most of my mailings that says “Hey it’s Mike from The Financial Blogger”. Unfortunately, this is never the exact action that I want them to do, I just want to tell them that I’m not a spammer and they have registered to my newsletter . Then, you will get some people that will be easily convinced and click in the middle of the article. And finally, you will have to do a bigger job for some readers and leave a link at the bottom of your email that could reach them.
After reading the past 2 sections, you should have a better idea of where you are going with your newsletter. I suggest writing a “content plan” where you define at least the next 10 emails that will be sent to your subscribers before opening your mailing list up to your readers. These 10 emails will be the core of your newsletter and it will give you some room to create another series of 10 emails.
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