Trust Is Scarce
How is it that a lowly email newsletter has become one of the most trusted news outlets in America? Ask Dave Pell, the creator of NextDraft, one of the most successful newsletters on the internet:
"It is no surprise as to why Dave has done so well with NextDraft. In this day and age of fake news and clickbait nonsense, people recognize the lack of quality content and the trust between the reader and publications is slowly fading away. That’s why someone who personally has made it his mission to provide only high-quality, carefully assimilated materials and does it in an engaging way has managed to become a modern day news hero. This builds up a very special relationship with audiences."
This is what I've strived for in my newsletters since I started sending them out in 1990s. I started with paper newsletters, and when technology allowed, moved to digital formats (making them on 3.5" floppies and sending them by snail mail). Email newsletter technology was a godsend.
With every iteration of format and subject I learned more about how little mattered next to trust. I stopped stressing over design, delivery methods and even sometimes topics (if a story is good, it often applies across several subjects). Starting in the late 90s, I focused on totally on trust. But, trust takes years of proving yourself to your readers. It means rejecting the early, easy money for the long-term hope of relationship building. That's hard. It's why it's so extremely rare.
It's easy to feel overwhelmed by our inboxes. But, a trusted, well-"curated" email newsletter is a thing of beauty. It saves you huge amounts of time and protects you from the throngs of hustlers vying for your attention every minute of every day.
It's my favorite form of publishing online.
I hope you subscribe to my personal newsletter and stay tuned for something new in the near future.