How do you get more people to sign up for your newsletter?
The best way is one of the oldest: offer the reader something useful, valuable, and closely related to the subject matter of newsletter for their subscription. Some call this a lead generator, although that term is only really applicable to newsletters with sales-based goals. Author Tammi Labrecque (whose writing on newsletters we’ll refer to in the future) calls them “cookies” because they’re used as an enticing treat to reward readers and attract new ones.
Coming up with the perfect lead generator for your audience is an art. No audience is the same. You’ll have to dig to find what works best for yours.
For instance, fiction authors often offer the first chapter of a book or the first book in a series. Business newsletters have found that offering a short, one-page list of the best resources in their industry often works better than offering entire books. Newsletters in the education industry offer downloadable worksheets and posters for teachers to use in their classrooms.
The goal should be to attract readers who will stay for the long term. This is why contests are usually frowned on. They tend to attract readers who unsubscribe right away or never open newsletters after the first issue. In fact, some writers stay away from lead generators, so they will only attract long-term readers who love their work enough to subscribe with no other incentive.
I’m going to assume that’s not you just yet. I’m going to assume you want a lot of new subscribers. If that’s true, lead generators are the place to start.
Provide value in your offer and you’ll get subscribers. Back it up with consistent value in your newsletters and you’ll get long-term readers (and customers).
Check out the rest of this month’s posts on creating email newsletters.