I’ve got a problem.
I really, really hate creating something that isn’t considered unique and memorable.
If you want to watch me spiral into misery, tell me to go do a thing the way someone else did a thing.
I dread mediocrity.
And, even more, I NEED whatever I create to stand out.
Which brings me to a current project that I’ve decided to share with you because I think you can help me:
Curated’s website is now on Webflow and I can actually make changes to it (it used to be inside the app’s codebase).
We went ahead and added our free tier to the site to communicate that loud and clear via CTAs (calls to action buttons like “Start for Free”).
Next, I’m planning to update the Features page. Here’s where my problem comes into play: I don’t want a boring list of features with meh descriptions.
I want to focus on the results those features help newsletter writers achieve.
I want narrative.
AND I want site visitors to feel like it’s easy to navigate to the features that would most benefit them (it’s not the same for every persona).
So before I just go write and design it the way I think it should be communicated, I thought I would ask your opinion. It’s really important to me that we don’t just assume you value a feature for what we think it does for you, but that we understand what you use it for and why you like or don’t like it.
So I’ve created a Google Form that asks you to rate how important a feature is to you and explain why you like having it.
This is NOT EXCLUSIVELY FOR CURATED USERS.
It’s for newsletter creators.
So I can understand and serve you better, even if you don’t use Curated.
I would be insanely grateful if you took a few minutes to fill it out and doesn't require an email address. You can rank and type responses, just rank, or just type a few–it’s up to you how detailed you want to get.
Here’s a list what’s included:
- Link collection
- Issue builder
- Optional publication site
- Customizable template
- Content categories
- Subscriber reports & management
- Paid newsletters
- Private newsletters
- Unlimited publications
- Unlimited users with permissions
- Affiliate program
The newsletter lessons in this?
- It’s ok to ask your readers to tell you what’s important to them. In fact, it’s critical.
- Don’t settle for doing things that blend in. Figure out how to stand out.
- Always give your readers something in exchange for their feedback. This week’s issue has some solid tips, a handful of deliverability acronyms, and beaucoup curation tool comparisons. I hope you find something valuable.
Thank you for indulging me in this request.
I’ll be back to more relevant storytelling next week.
Don’t Be Annoying! Take It From The Experts
What’s your biggest content marketing pet peeve? In this article, 51 experts from the speaker line up and the upcoming Content Marketing World vented theirs.
Some strong ones included:
- Creating disposable content - Carlijn Postma
- Trivializing the practice - Penny Gralewski
- Living in a silo - Matthew Rayback
- Seeing people only as revenue - Kathy Klotz-Guest
P.S. Curious about what irks me? You’ll have to go looking for it. That’s right. I’m speaking at Content Marketing World this year with Dennis Shiao and I’m pretty excited. If you want to attend in person or online, here’s the sign up link. Use my personal code GUTTUSO100 for $100 off.
No More Cookies? Time To Get Creative
Without cookies, it’s inevitable digital creators will have to get creative in terms of gathering information. Ricardo Diaz explains how experiences like interactive roller coaster rides are emerging in this Smart Brief article.
5 Ways To Create Better Content
If you want to craft higher quality content, these 5 ideas from Lauren Smith for Studio / ID are a good place to start:
- Write better headlines
- Make the story more meaningful
- Consult subject matter experts
- Be a thought leader
- Don’t try to be an expert on everything
“If you know a certain trend or concept is going to be important to your audience over the next few months or few years, dedicate yourself to continual coverage that will keep your readers turning to you as developments unfold.”
Hint: Strategic curation can help bolster that continual coverage.
Discovered via Social Media Today.
A Guide To Getting Started With Content Curation
If you’re getting started in content curation, this thorough guide is a good place to start. Claudia Bird includes insightful tips like:
- Crediting sources, but including personal twists
- Being selective and mixing up content types
- And, the importance of manual curation on top of tools
Bird encourages curators to pair your process with lists and tools such as Quuu (the article publisher), Feedly, and Pocket.
Related: Check out this round up of 6 curation tools.
Also Related: Still looking for more? Consider this bonus list of 14 content curation tools.
Note: These are all recent posts so it looks like everyone’s trying to rank for “content curation tools” these days.
Are Your Digital Subscription Numbers Accurate?
In this Poynter piece, Rick Edmonds explains the problem with inconsistent digital-only subscriber counts, which are pretty common.
Why it’s important for publishers
Subscription numbers are huge selling points for potential advertisers. Accuracy matters to them and to the health of the industry as a whole.
Dive deeper here.
Discovered via American Press Institute
Digital Ad Fraud Keeps Growing
This article shares an update on the state of digital ad fraud. Kevin Rehberg includes these 4 points publishers should know:
- As digital ad spend grows, so does fraud
- Everyone is affected by fraud, including publishers
- Publishers can stand out as quality media
- It takes more than one solution to address the problem
Discovered via Editor and Publisher.
Does Anyone Know What The “Creator Economy” Actually Is?
If you’re asking what exactly the creator economy is, you’re not alone.
“Even proponents of the so-called ‘creator economy,’ the lattice of new platforms and tools meant to serve creators, can’t quite agree on what the term means or whom it includes.”
Even if we can’t pin-point the definition, Kyle Chayka thinks we should admit that the creator economy is still highly reliant on big-tech:
“Participants are still precarious workers, relying on the whims of corporations for their livelihoods.”
This New Yorker article is worth a read.
Discovered via Raisin Bread.
Related: Check out these paid newsletter tips. Discovered via Publisher Weekly.
Add A Description To Your Sponsored Categories
Hey y’all, Seth here.
This week, we released a way for you to add a description to your sponsored categories so potential sponsors can learn more about the different sponsorship opportunities you offer.
This feature was inspired by Curated users who have multiple sponsored categories that need unique descriptions.
To add a description to your sponsored links,
- Go to your publication’s settings
- Scroll down to the “Sponsorship” section
- Click “Pricing and Inquiries”
- Add optional descriptions to the “Description” box under each sponsorship category
ICYMI: You can always check our Curated Public Product Roadmap to catch up on recent releases and find out what’s up next.
Opt In Challenge
Master The Acronyms Of Deliverability
This week, your Opt In Challenge is to read through this Email on Acid article and make sure you’re doing what you can for optimal deliverability.
You’ll learn about:
- SPF (Sender Policy Framework)
- DKIM (Domain Keys Identified Mail)
- DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance)
- BIMI (Brand Indicators for Message Identification)
Like this newsletter?
Like this newsletter?
Let me know. Reply, email me at Ashley[at]optinweekly.com, 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 OptInWeekly.com, so you can send them the link to check it out.
Have a great week sending, y’all.