Your Newsletter: The Golden Ticket
The process of launching a book into the market and positioning it for success among the competition can seem like a daunting task for many authors. There are so many components and moving parts to think of that many authors find themselves feeling overwhelmed and not sure where to begin. While there is no one thing that will guarantee success, there is a golden ticket that will get you through the door to reaching readers and building a loyal and engaged followership: the newsletter.
In today’s noisy landscape, the competition for people’s attention grows increasingly more crowded. With thousands of books published each day, it’s easy to get lost in the shuffle if you don’t have a strategic plan to reach your target audience and stay relevant. As an author and thought leader, you have more content at your fingertips than you might realize. The key is taking your deep industry know-how and transforming that into new and digestible formats.
A well-curated newsletter that provides thoughtful and engaging content, positions you as both an author and an expert, and shares relevant and insightful news and advice can make you a trusted guide and resource in the eyes of your readers. By becoming a voice that readers look to and creating content that they are excited to receive and engage with, you create a powerful and dynamic relationship with them.
Set Yourself Up for Success
Creating an editorial calendar and content strategy is imperative to creating a consistent and compelling newsletter. Select a frequency that is manageable for you; decide at the outset whether a weekly, monthly, or quarterly newsletter makes the most sense for you. Once you have decided on a frequency, stick to it—your readers will be expecting your content.
Begin curating content, excerpting snippets of your work that can be repurposed and extrapolated, gathering relevant articles, and generating both ideas that are evergreen and those that have seasonal tie-ins. Setting the stage with this kind of prep work will ensure that the task of creating your weekly/monthly/quarterly newsletter is both manageable and efficient.
Share Valuable Content
The last thing you want to do is to end of being tagged as clutter in someone’s inbox. You want your newsletter to be looked forward to and seen as essential and exciting content for your subscribers, so creating valuable and engaging content is imperative.
As an author, you are likely a tireless researcher and content consumer. Staying abreast of the latest news, trends, and conversations in your field both keeps you up to speed and gives you the opportunity to look for any gaps in the market where you could fill consumers’ needs. If you aren’t already subscribing to newsletters in your field, this is a great way to get a sense of what your peers and competitors are doing and where you can insert yourself into the conversation.
Be sure to keep your content brief and focused and to include key takeaways and calls to action to ensure that readers can easily scan and digest your newsletter. Here are a few examples of the types of goals your newsletter should aim to achieve and the types of content you can share:
- Address readers’ pain points: Share how to’s, tactics, infographics and tutorials.
- Be a content curator and thought leader: Share relevant industry news and your perspective/insights.
- Encourage engagement: Share details about upcoming conferences, speaking events, and book signings.
- Create strong digital content: Share a video series or host webinars to engage readers across formats.
Grow Your Subscribers
As an author/expert, it is key for you to encourage brand loyalty among your readers. The way to do this is through authentic engagement, and the newsletter is an excellent lens for that. A great way to reach new readers is to offer incentive content as a free download on your website in exchange for a newsletter sign up. This allows new subscribers to get a sample of your content in the format of a free chapter and then become more immersed in your content and author brand through the newsletter.
Use conferences, speaking engagements, and webinars as opportunities to invite people to sign up for your newsletter. Any time you have a captive audience engaging with you and your message is a prime time to share your newsletter with them, as you are top of mind. Don’t miss out on these opportunities to grow your subscriber base!
To ensure that your newsletter stays fresh and exciting, be sure to mix up the content: Give readers a look behind the scenes with things like chapters that didn’t make it into the final book or a view into your writing process. Readers love to have a sense of personal connection to the author, and this insider’s view builds a strong connection with them.
So whether you have an upcoming book or have already published, creating a well-thought-out newsletter strategy is an excellent way to engage a new community of readers. Creating a conversation and sharing regular and compelling content will go a long way toward helping you to reach and engage with your target audience. And remember to have fun with it too; if you’re excited to share your content, your subscribers will be excited to read it!