I remember when I first started by blog I was SOOOO LOST. I was like, okay I have a website but now how do I send out a bunch of e-mails to people that want to subscribe to my website.
How do I even GET someone to subscribe to my site?
I wanted to just die trying to figure it out. I didn’t know where to look or what it would even be called. My friend at my gym told me that she had started using mailchimp but I think my response was, “what the fuck is that”.
The name itself was a start but it still wasn’t very helpful.
Slowly but surely I started messing with it and started to figure it out for the most part.
Here’s the basics of what you need to know if you are wanting to start sending newsletters out to your subscribers via Mailchimp.
Start out by going to mailchimp.com and clicking the button that says SIGN UP. Once you get your account set up then it will take you to your dashboard page which should look something like this:
So you’ll notice the tabs at the top of the page.
CAMPAIGNS are your newsletters.
TEMPLATES are any newsletters that you create and you want to save the template so that you can use it again.
LISTS are your subscribers.
REPORTS give you all the stats and analytics on your newsletters.
and last but not least
AUTOMATION is where you would set up AUTOMATIC newsletters. Veryyyyy handy.
In order to be able to send a newsletter you have to first have a list aka subscribers. You can either add emails by manually typing them in, or you have already built a large e-mail list and you want to import it into mailchimp then that is also an option.
What’s nice is that once you have your website set up you can easily connect your mailchimp to your site (if you use squarespace then it is super easy!) and then whenever someone subscribes, mailchimp will automatically update your list!
You can also create a list from a pre-existing list. SO for example, if I notice that there’s 200 people that open every single one of my newsletters then I can create something like a VIP list just for those subscribers and easily save it to my “lists”.
Then if I want to send out a newsletter exclusively for VIP members like a discount code or something, then I can click on that list and that newsletter will only be sent to those 200 people.
Now that you have your list, it’s time to create your campaign, aka your newsletter. When I click CAMPAIGNS at the top of the page, it directs me to this page where we can find every single newsletter i’ve ever sent out. This is also where we have the option of creating a NEW campaign (top right).
By clicking on an old campaign I can see who opened the newsletter, who clicked on links within the newsletter and what links exactly. I can see where my subscribers are located which is awesome because it helps you understand the demographic of your readership and it also tells you what times they were opened. A lot of helpful information.
This is always good information to go back and look at because if I included links to 4 different blogs in my newsletter and notice that 80 people clicked on one particular blog while only 10-15 clicks were made on the other blogs, then I have a better idea of what my readers find interesting.
So go to this page to make a new campaign. Once you click on that then it will ask you what you want to name your campaign. I started by just calling my very first one “0001” and I just go up from there.
Then it will ask you to chose a list to send the campaign to, and from there you have the option of designing a new campaign or using the format of an old one from your daed templates.
I like to stick to a theme so I tend to use the same format and just change out the blogs and pictures.
From here I’ll just click on the template I want to use and then click NEXT. This is where you can add in pictures or videos and write what it is that you want to say to your readers!
Once you’re finished it will ask you if you are ready to publish!! This is the most exciting part because mailchimp reminds you what your sending out and to how many people.
Now this is the part that I LOVE. Once you send your campaign, you can wait like 2 minutes and then go back to your dashboard (homepage) and click reports at the top of your page. You can click on the newsletter you just sent out and start to take a look at who is opening it and if they are clicking through on any links!
This is a really good way to get your website traffic up!
Let’s quickly talk about automation.
I used automation a few times and there are many different ways to use it.
You can use automation to set up various e-mails that automatically get sent out as soon as someone signs up for your newsletter. Typically a good thing to do is to have a welcome letter send out as soon as someone signs up and then you can use automation to automatically send out another newsletter 1 day later. You can also do 1 hour later or 1 week later but the point is that the next e-mail will go out automatically after the reader opens the first one.
A good idea for a second e-mail is maybe a few of your favorite blogs so that you’re new subscribers can get a better idea of what your site is all about and get a feel for how you format your newsletters.
DON’T OVERLOAD YOUR READERS INBOX’S WITH E-MAILS.
Decide if you’re going to send out 1 newsletter a week or bi-weekly, or even once a month and try to stick to that.
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