My daughter, Josie (8), spent the first few days of this week forcing her blistered thumb in people’s faces and proclaiming, “Look what I did!”

It was the size of an iPhone app button, if that button was a miniature cellophane balloon filled with whatever the stuff in a blister is. Pus?

This blister was the result of some serious labor.

When we arrived at the fair for her aerial gymnastics performance, we had a little time for rides before the show started. She was determined to spin herself dizzy on the teacups. From the moment she plopped into her teacup until the ride was over (two minutes?), she very aggressively achieved her goal.

But as she walked off the ride, pain spread across her face. She’d rubbed two blisters. One had popped in the process of spinning and now a splash of water, a bandage, and a little fanfare ensued as we treated the little gymnast who’d spun her teacup so hard she’d injured herself.

She made it through her performance—striking poses on a rope ladder with two other girls—and an afternoon at the fair without much more drama (aside from the very awkward moments when supervisors had to be called to convince ride workers that if her head touched the line on the height chart that meant she could ride).

The big blister popped a few days later at school and the healing has begun.

She’s now checking the progress and smiles as she remembers how fast she was able to spin. Maybe she’ll hold back next time. Or maybe she’ll wear gloves.

Her experience and the wound hasn’t slowed her down much. She had a speaking part at church Tuesday and nailed it. Today she has a practice standardized achievement test. And Friday… Spring Break begins.

That’s right. This family, which has been a collection of spinning teacups for the past several weeks as our pre-Covid schedule seems to be returning, is taking an actual break.

We’re headed to the Keys and I’m determined to let my mind heal itself.

I’m getting off my personal spinning teacup (which, boy do I love making go round and round faster and faster) and I’m going to intentionally relax, reflect, and envision our future.

As a newsletter creator, it’s important, I think, to carve out a moment to distance yourself from the process you’ve created and return fresh with ideas.

I’ve invited Sarah Colley, a talented freelance writer I’ve been engaging with on LinkedIn, to be your guest curator for Opt In Weekly next week.

You’ll notice a few references to her below in the Screen Share and Marketing sections. Please give her a warm welcome and enjoy her take on content and newsletters. I’m excited to see what she does.

Also, we’re taking nominations for 2021’s Top Newsletters of the Year. Nominate your favorite newsletters now, then vote March 26 - April 15. Winners will be announced Friday, April 16, at Newsletter Fest.

Note: Nominations created on all building/sending platforms are welcome.

Now, let’s spin along into this week’s roundup of newsletter advice.

Ashley Guttuso  

Screen Share

Newsletter Tips


[Insert Activity Here]-led Growth

Speaking of growth marketing, it seems everyone has a new growth strategy they’re pushing these days. In the past week, each of these articles found my inbox and caught my interest, so I thought I’d share them with you.

1) Hal Koss explains Community-Led Growth. The premise is that companies are prioritizing building a community as a core action instead of simply adding on community as an afterthought.

2) Lenny Rachitsky provides examples of companies doing well with Content-Driven Growth. He breaks it into five strategies (User-Generated SEO-Optimized; Editorially-Generated SEO-Optimized; Data-Generated SEO-Optimized; User-Generated Virality-Optimized; and Editorially-Generated Virality-Optimized) and provides interview responses from leaders at companies who execute these well.



Money Matters

Curated News Curated News

Opt In ChallengeOpt In Challenge

Like this newsletter?

Let me know. Reply, email me at Ashley[at], or find me on LinkedIn to hit me with some feedback. I’d love to know what you think.

Also, I’d appreciate it if you shared it with fellow email newsletter creators. All archived issues will be available on, so you can send them the link to check it out.

Have a great week sending, y’all.

Thanks for reading,

Ashley Guttuso