While I’m on this marketing kick, I thought we should talk about the newsletter. It is one of the most important tools a writer/author has for marketing. There is a lot we can do on Facebook and Twitter as far as posting and tweeting and getting information out there. But the truth of the matter is that we don’t own those platforms. As unlikely as it is, we could wake up tomorrow and it would all be shut down. But the e-mails you accumulate through your website and speaking engagements are yours.
How do I get those e-mails?
There are several ways to grow your e-mail list. One is simply by having a blog or website where people can engage with you and sign up if they like your content. Offer them more of a glimpse into your life through the newsletter. More exclusives, freebies…something.
One of the things I have done (which is not my original idea) is to write a novella that is available for free (on ebook) to anyone and everyone who signs up for my newsletter. That adds value.
Recruiting people to your newsletter through contests and the like can help grow your list. Sign up for my newsletter and I will draw a name to win a free (blank). Be wise, though, you cannot attach the prize to something they must purchase in any way, shape, or form.
What do I do now that I have an e-mail list?
Start a newsletter! I use a newsletter service called MailChimp. I used to send out a newsletter every 3-4 months, but now I am trying to get one out at least every other month. But the key to the newsletter is that you need to provide something of value to the recipient. A recipe, news of free book downloads, a sneak peek…something. And let them see into your writing life a bit. Give them a peek behind the curtain, so to speak.
And be consistent about sending out the newsletter and providing valuable content. Keep your audience wanting more.