Let’s talk about feeling nudged vs feeling nagged.
Maybe these should be the 2 Ns of email newsletters?
It’s basic psychology (I hope—I have zero formal psych education, but I’ve been writing with a reader’s reaction in mind since my first book, published in 4th grade).
People like to own their decisions.
They do not like to be badgered into making them.
They prefer to opt in, not to be pushed into providing their email address.
You wouldn’t go on a dating platform, connect with someone, and propose before the first date. Again, no experience with this but the 4th grader in me thinks this approach would be ridiculous.
So, why, oh why, if I visit your website for the VERY FIRST TIME are you asking me to give you something as precious as my email address before I’ve consumed at least a few scrolls worth of content?
Today’s issue includes some topics we newsletter creators should consider:
- How to use pop-up subscription forms that nudge (take advantage of the testing Really Good Emails performed)
- Getting attention without being annoying
- Not landing in spam (what you can control and what you can’t)
- Why engagement dominates list size (this topic never gets old, or does it?)
It’s a mix of advice from people who know a thing or two about nudging vs nagging.
My hope is that these curated tidbits will help you stay in the nudge zone (but not the friend zone).
Oh, and you should know my daughters recently read that story I wrote in 4th grade and they think the ending is lousy because everything they thought would happen happened.
Maybe I’ve improved since then...
Do Email Subscription Pop-Ups work?
People tend to have some really strong opinions about pop-ups, but there’s a reason they exist. In this article, Really Good Emails Co-Founder Mike Nelson unpacks the results of some pop-up testing their team conducted. This is a great read if you’re hoping your pop-ups help people feel nudged instead of nagged.
Also, because I feel like the more email experts we engage with the more we hear that list size is less important than engagement:
“... we at RGE don’t really care about list size. We often say: ‘Build relationships. Not lists.’ We are okay with people leaving our lists because we’d rather talk to the people who want to hear from us than try to get the attention of those who could hear from us. The importance of list size is based on vanity metrics and billables. Most ESPs and bosses put an emphasis on how many people are on your list, not who is on your list. If anything, this little test reinforced this position that your most engaged readers are the ones you should be serving.”
A Should-I-Create-a-Curated-Newsletter Decision Tree
Demian Farnworth created an easy way to figure out if you should launch a curated email newsletter over on CopyBlogger. I know, I know. It’s from 2015, but the thought journey you should take still holds solid.
If you’re considering curating a newsletter (or already have a curated newsletter), this decision tree and the article it accompanies will be helpful.
Image credit: Like this infographic? Get content marketing from Copyblogger Media that will give you an unfair business advantage.
How The Tampa Bay Times Uses Texting
Joshua Gillin, Senior Editor of Engagement at the Tampa Bay Times explains the process they used to add a text subscription to their offerings to provide readers with election coverage. It’s a great glimpse into how this option can work for newspapers transitioning from print to digital media.
Related: Check out these 3 Publishers that saw Business Impact with Digital News Innovation Projects
Now, We’re Speaking Your Language, Curated Users
Or, more accurately, we might be supporting it. We’ve been busy lately adding new languages to the platform and support over 10 now.
If yours isn’t there, please contact support to request it (and possibly help us with the translation).
Thanks to all our new users who made this possible.
Opt In Challenge
Download the Litmus Email Newsletter Toolkit
Grab the Litmus email newsletter toolkit (yes, you’ll have to provide your email address, but their email advice is top-notch so it’s a no-brainer) and dive into a bevy of expert advice. The best part? There are 2 videos in this bundle:
- How To Create an Email Newsletter People Will Clear Their Calendars To Read, Ann Handley
- Building a Newsletter That’s Strange and Wonderful, Chris Vasquez
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.
Thanks for reading,