Do you ever think about your newsletter in context of the volume of interactions your subscribers process in a given day or week?
How many emails does your reader receive in the same hour yours arrives?
How many Slack messages?
How many texts?
Or Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, TikTok alerts?
Our lives have become a barrage of little red circles—sometimes ovals when my unopened email count hits triple digits!—we chase around the screens we sit in front of and carry.
All of them beg for our attention and are prioritized according to hierarchy.
And it’s no wonder the email inbox is difficult to win.
So many senders abuse it, teaching us to expect content we don’t want and sometimes didn’t ask for.
In The Subversive Genius of Extremely Slow Email, Ian Bogost examines the idea of slowing down, and the potential of technology to help us recapture a less alert-driven existence.
“Our suffering arises, in part, from the speed and volume of our social interactions online.”
Reading his piece made me think about Wordle, a lovely word puzzle my co-workers have been playing daily. We share our scores in a Slack channel.
My CEO JD Graffam captured its refreshing qualities one day:
“Wordle is not an addictive or abusive game, like most games, and I love it. No red badges, no endless play, no notifications, no ads, presumably minimal tracking (it does have google tag manager). I love it, but I do wonder why it’s worth the maker’s time to maintain. Surely all the scaling has come with a cost and significant investment in time.”
And while we could dig into the business bits, what I’d like you, newsletter creator, to ponder is what it would mean for your newsletter to be like Wordle.
It does several things at once.
It provides a reason to focus.
It rewards critical thinking.
It connects you with the people with whom you share your scores.
It builds a relationship at a healthy cadence.
It delivers a gratifying (or frustrating) experience, but does not ask for more.
I go to it. It doesn’t nag me.
All goals we might seek to achieve as we land in the inboxes of the endlessly notified recipients who might enjoy slowing down to learn and then share what you’ve taught them.
But, How Does This Make You Feel?
We often leave the question, “How does this make you feel?” to therapists. But Ayaz Nanji thinks marketers should focus on feelings, too. This Marketing Profs article looks at what people are emotionally looking for in brand messaging.
Discovered via theCLIKK.
Director Of Marketing Vs. VP Of Marketing
What are the differences between the Director of Marketing and VP of Marketing roles? Sam Kuehnle breaks it down on his LinkedIn.
Is There A Right Way To Guest Post?
Guest posting can help to grow your audience and drive traffic, but is it worth the time and research? This Ghost article explains how to approach guest posting.
Which leads me to an idea I’ve had for a while: why aren't we guest newslettering? Hit me up if you want to experiment with this.
Discovered via Ghost Newsletter.
5 Proofreading Tools That Are Actually Helpful
Proofreading can be a pain. Maybe these 5 resources from Jackie Pearce can make the job a little easier.
Confession: I think of proofreading as something to be done after just getting the words out. I don’t like tools that nag me during the rough draft process.
Discovered via The Write Life.
Are You Using AI Writing Tools?
What role should AI play in your writing? This HubSpot article by Rebecca Safier shares how 5 different writers use AI tools.
6 Tips To Implement Before Writer’s Block Hits
What do you do when writer’s block hits? Tim Metz offers 6 tips designed to help, including this: “Store articles you need to read for your writing in a read-it-later app.” Sounds like curation 😉.
Discovered via Raisin Bread.
The Publishing World Is Getting Creative. Are You?
The Metaverse. NFTs. Emerging subscription models. All of these (and more) seem to be part of today’s publishing world. But will they last? Are these avenues profitable? Should you jump on board? This week’s publishing insights take a look.
- Can newsletters reverse the decline of local news? Both Axios and 6AM City think this model could work. Full article (by William Turvill) here.
- Speaking of Axios, they’re launching a premium subscription product (read: only annual subscription options). Sarah Scire with Nieman Lab explains their approach here.
- Should you be targeting “elite readers”? Jay Rosen tweeted about how media startups are catering to the well-educated and financially stable.
- Emily Goligoski, executive director of audience research for The Atlantic is sharing 2 years of research. Discover what they learned about their audience here.
- In this Politico opinion piece, Journalism Is Broken and I Alone Can Fix It!, Jack Shafer attacks the failed missions recent media startups declared would save journalism and didn’t.
- We’ve heard a lot about the Metaverse, but what opportunities does it present specifically for publishers? Matthew Lynes with Twipe takes a look.
- Publishers have jumped into the world of NFTs, but is it sustainable? Chris Sutcliffe takes a look for WNIP.
A Newsletter Expert’s Insights On Monetization
Ethan Brooks spent 2 years writing for a multi-million dollar paid newsletter and is using his experience to tweet:
- Why to build a monetized newsletter
- How to price
- When to launch
- And more
Discovered via For the Interested.
A Detailed Process For Creating A Paid Newsletter
If you’ve ever wanted someone to break paid newsletters down for you, Armando Roggio has delivered. He’s documented the process here.
Discovered via InboxReads.
The Creator’s Path To Success
Why isn’t there a “creator middle class”? This IdeaEconomy article offers an explanation and a reason why it’s a good thing. My takeaway? The path to success is built on a simple idea: “don’t give up.”
How To Build An Entire Newsletter Issue By Just Collecting Links
Hey everyone, Seth from Curated Success here. With Curated’s link collecting tools like the bookmarklet and the Chrome Extension, you can easily collect links to your publication. But did you know you can save text with a collected link by highlighting it?
With this function, you can fully build an issue of your Curated newsletter that includes links with direct quotes. Here’s how:
1. Install the Curated Chrome Extension or bookmarklet
To save highlighted text with a collected link, you’ll need to use either the Chrome extension or the bookmarklet. Both can be installed in just a few clicks and each allows you to quickly save a link to one of your Curated newsletters.
2. Highlight text in a link you want to collect
Once you find a link you want to include in your next issue, highlight text from it that captures why your reader should be interested in that link.
This could be a paragraph that summarizes the content, or it could be a really powerful statement you think will draw attention. Choose whatever you think will resonate with your readers most.
3. Collect the link and use markdown to format the text as a quote
Using either the Chrome extension or the bookmarklet, collect the link while the text you want to save is still highlighted. In the window that opens, scroll down to the Body. Here you should see the text from the link you highlighted.
Use this markdown to format the text as a quote from the article:
This shows your reader that it’s a quote from the article, not your personal commentary. As always, you could add your own commentary as you collect or later, if desired.
4. Finish collecting the link
Make sure the Title and URL look good, assign the link to a category, and keep or toss the collected social share image if you’d like (and choose the aspect ratio), then save the link to your publication.
5. Repeat then publish
Repeat this process until you’ve collected enough links for your next issue. When you go back to Curated, import the saved articles using the Import All button on the draft issue page. Be sure to set a subject line and preview text for this issue, then test, schedule, or publish right away.
This workflow allows you to quickly create a curated issue that provides value to your readers without taking a huge chunk of your time.
Have questions about this? Let me know at support [at] curated.co.
Curated Crash Course Is Today At 4 PM Central
Curated Crash Course is today at 4 PM CT!
As usual, the first 30 minutes include a tutorial on getting started with Curated followed by a Q&A session that begins at 4:30.
This is built to be a come-and-go Zoom call, so feel free to hop in whenever you can and leave when you have to.
If you have any questions about Curated or newsletters, we created a Google Form where you can submit them.
Seth will answer them live at Curated Crash Course during the Q&A segment of the session, but if you can't make it, he’ll send you a recording so you can see your questions answered.
ICYMI: You can always check our Curated Public Product Roadmap to catch up on recent releases and find out what’s up next.
Don’t want to click through? Our recent bigger releases include Paid Subscriptions (0% commission!) and a Free Tier.
Opt In Challenge
Learn From Expert Creators
There’s wisdom in learning from people who have gone before you. This week, your Opt In Challenge is to watch (at least) one of these videos Josh Spector of For the Interested tells creators to watch.
Short on time? He includes timestamps of the most valuable minute of each video.