I can't tell you how many times I have heard that every business should have a mailing list. Do I agree that every single business should have one? No! I know plenty of very successful small business owners that don't have one, and I don't think it's suited for certain industries. However, in my specific industry of teaching (in person, through free blog posts, and through courses), I think it's beneficial to have a newsletter.
What's a mailing list, anyway?
I go back and forth between calling it a mailing list, a newsletter, and a weekly e-mail, because a newsletter implies that I have news (LOL), and most weeks, I don't. But, basically, it's this: a collection of e-mails you have gathered (with express permission of the e-mail owner), that you can use to send mass newsletters, promotions, or e-mails. Usually, these are hosted on platforms designed for this specific thing. I use Mailchimp, but there are many other wonderful platforms. Lately, I've been considering switching over to Convert Kit.
Why I Started A Newsletter:
- I want to continually give added value to my subscribers, because they are my 'community.' If you sign up to receive my weekly e-mail, you're signing up to hang out with me an extra time every week, and for that, I am grateful. I get joy from giving extra details I wouldn't normally share in my blog to my little community. I create free downloads, share trade secrets, and talk about life and business updates. And of course, my subscribers are the first to hear about any new courses or opportunities I have to offer!
- I want to build relationships with my readers, and turn readers into friends. This is something I L-O-V-E about having a weekly e-mail. When I write each week's e-mail, I include a call-to-action at the end, asking the reader to hit reply and answer a question, share a story, or simply say hello. I can't believe the amount of responses I receive each week, and because I make a point to answer back, I have formed quite the relationship with active members in my community. That's an added bonus for me, and for them, and will serve both of us better in the long run.
- I want to build the 'know, like, and trust' factor. Gurus will tell you the three things you need to have repeat customers, and build a loyal audience is to have them 'know, like, and trust' you. And with a weekly e-mail, I can be myself and show more of who I am in a way I simply can't on Instagram or Facebook. It's really important to me to be transparent and honest with my subscribers--about the good, the bad, and the ugly--which is why I enjoy #gettingreal in my newsletter. My subscribers know they can count on me to be honest with them, and I truly believe that honesty factor has had a huge hand in the success of my first ever online course.
All in all, I really lean on my subscribers each week. I hold their thoughts, opinions, and suggestions very highly in my business, and I really care about what they have to say. The only thing I would do differently with my newsletter is to have started it earlier!
Most importantly, I believe it's so important to have a mailing list because you really benefit form having a group of people who are 'extra excited' about you and your business. I use myself as a personal example: the only newsletters I'm subscribed to are sent out by individuals and business owners I truly care about, and stay interested in. The larger your list > the more interested, excited people you have in your community > the more sales of your product or service.
Are you toying around with starting a mailing list? Would you like to hear more about what platform I use to host my newsletter? Leave a comment below and let me know what part of this topic you would like to read more about. I have so many thoughts a-swirlin' in my brain!
And now, because I've basically told you everything you can expect in my weekly e-mail, here's a chance for you to sign up! I hope to see you around :)