Archive for Blogging 101

How to Increase Your Blog’s Email Newsletter and Feeds Subscriptions

I’ve started a new category called “Advice I Give My Clients” and while I might not give everything away through this series of posts … I’m planning on giving some good advice I’ve learned in my blogging experience.

So here’s the first in this series … how to increase your blog’s email newsletter and feed subscriptions …

One tweak will help you dramatically and did for me on my main blog

Put a feed button and email subscription form in the template of your blog’s single posts. This is the individual page link of your post, at the end of your posts …

Here’s the theory that I’ve seen work … I found that 50 percent of my visitors were coming from Google or search engines … that means that 50 percent of my traffic came to single posts within my blog.

For the longest time I had my feed and email subscription field where it usually is … at the top of the right sidebar.

But what I realized was … guests to my blog posts read the headline, then down through the post … until the end (usually).

Which means … they ended up … at the comments.

Now, while I like comments and want the conversation to keep going … what’s more important to me is the repeat traffic to my blog.

How do I get repeat traffic? Through getting people to subscribe to my feed … and sending out my monthly-ish email newsletter.

The answer … putting those two vital functions right where the reader can easily find them.

Convenience.

And, hey, if they like what they read in the post … what better time to make that offer to them!

CopyBlogger’s Brian Clark on Business Blogging, Email Newsletters

I greatly admire and read everything Brian Clark of CopyBlogger writes … and while reading this post at The Long Tail titled Don’t Quit Your Day Job, I saw a comment he made to that post that caught my eye … it’s very appropriate for this blog and for small businesses, I think … and it’s worth reposting because what Brian says is backed, I think, by a proven track record (Note my italics for emphasis):

“There are simple email newsletters that make $100 million a year via direct marketing (yes, $100 million). There’s no reason a blog can’t do the same. And scores of small business owners directly drum up respectable sales with regular content publication via email. Blogs are much more powerful from an attention standpoint, if properly utilized in context.”

Read more of Brian’s excellent insights at CopyBlogger

See also my stuff on: Business Blogging 101 series and Using Email Newsletters.

Using Email Newsletters & Free Offers on Your Business Blog or Website

Now that we know the central strategy to a great business blog is dynamic content … let me talk briefly about two tools I think every small business blog should have as part of its core strategy: email newsletters and free offers.

Let me talk generally about their role in your blogging strategy.

First, email newsletters …

The key to most small business marketing efforts are a list of current and/or prospective customers.

The idea here is to create (if you don’t have one already) an email newsletter for your business and blog that your readers can subscribe to.

Think about it: qualified customers. Ones who have “opted in” to your company’s newsletter through your blog.

In fact, one of the first things I do when starting a new blog is planning the email newsletter that will accompany it.

Every good business blog will have an email newsletter sidekick.

Let me repeat it, because it’s worth repeating: Every good business blog will have an opt-in email newsletter.

So, as you’re thinking about your business blog … also be thinking and planning on using an email newsletter.

Second, free offers …

Free offers tie in directly with email newsletters.

In fact, free offers (in the form of a PDF downloadable report on my subject) are the primary way I use to generate subscribers for my email newsletter.

Here’s how this works … you offer a free report of some kind prominently on your blog (mine is 7 Steps to Starting a Business Blog). Your customers can download this free report by subscribing to your email newsletter.

This is how you can give value to your blog/website guest … and also help populate your email newsletter.

I’ll talk more later about how to go about producing this free offer … but this free offer can be a simple checklist on “picking the right home insurance” or “7 steps to eating healthy.”

It’s one of the most affordable ways I know to demonstrate your expertise while marketing to your customers!

So get on the bandwagon … create a value-packed, free downloable report … and offer it through your value-package, pro-customer email newsletter.