Short and sweet this week … this week’s topic was the importance of The Newsletter! And the importance of taking time and having a strategy to reach out to people. And reach out we must. How many people do you know who actively go looking for new and stimulating art that will move and inspire them? I’ll tell you how I most often find the new-and-stimulating-art-that-is-to-move-and-inspire-me: I look on my facebook feed to see what other people say is going to move and inspire me. The dirty truth. But it’s true: information comes to us. So if you are information – well get out there. The People are waiting for you, hitting their “refresh” every 15 seconds.
I really liked the 1,000 True Fans article that we read this week. I like how it reaffirmed the importance of concentrating on making a living making your art opposed to concentrating on making a hit. It was also interesting googling and reading similar articles that believed in similar concepts and counter-articles that didn’t believe the 1,000 True Fans idea to be legit. It’s good to hear it from both sides.
Other highlights from the reading this week:
Don’t overload each newsletter with 25 call-to-actions. Give me one thing you’re asking me to do. I might do it then.
Do ask permission to put each person on your email list (even close friends and family) and make unsubscribing clear and easy.
Do write about interesting, personal stories – even if they’re not related to your music. Share pictures, videos, etc. “Interesting” is key here. Funny is key-er.
I do have to say, one point this week I’m not as comfortable with: I’ve never been sold on the idea of “personalizing” each email newsletter. I dislike getting emails that are meant to be newsletters or mass emails that begin with a ‘personalized’ greeting such as, “Good Morning, __Susan__ !” or “Greetings, __Susan__, did you know that … ?” (It’s all very reminiscent all the Readers Digest contest envelopes my mom opened. and entered. and never won). This is especially true when the subject line of a mass email contains my name: “Hey __Susan__ find out how you can get this and this and this for FREE!!” To me that looks like junkmail and I’ll probably treat it as such. I personally think its much more respectful to your audience to just own up to the fact that this is a mass email, meant to be that. That is what people are signing up for, isn’t it? Being personal within the newsletter by a) writing the letter yourself and b) sharing personal insights will make me feel like the letter has me, a fan, in mind. My brother David Newberry begins each newsletter with “Dear Poets” … I love this. It makes him stand out from the masses, and it makes me feel like i AM a poet! Clearly the research shows that other people feel differently about this. I’d love to know your thoughts…
I’ve been building a newletter with the bandzoogle site I’ve been working with. I chatted with some of their tech members this week, and had all my questions answered. I saw clearly that it’s all right there for me right now at bandzoogle. I’m going to go full-on with them, including using them as the hosts for my newsletter, and see what comes of it. I’d love to hear from you if you are a bandzoogle user and use the site for newsletters, etc. How are you finding it?
I decided that I’m not going to ask people to sign up for a newsletter until the site is ready with a new look that reflects the new album. I’m also waiting until I have the first mastered single off the EP that can be given away as incentive for the newsletter. This track won’t be available on any other social medium, and will be available to newsletter subscribers before the album is released. I will continue to update and send out news snippets through all of my other (growing list of) social media sites. But the newsletter will mark the beginning of the next step, and will be quality stuff! My sound editor has me on the edge of my seat this week praising the new studio tracks (which I haven’t even heard yet!) So stay seriously tuned – I’ll be letting you know when it’s all ready to be launched. soon.
So that’s it for this week!
Editor’s Update (March 2012) – I have created a website with a newsletter program! You can sign up to it right NOW! You will receive a free download from my upcoming EP. The newsletter will be a part of an April 2012 launch of the website, wherein a different *exclusive* song will be available for download (one that doesn’t show up anywhere else on the net). Please check it out here. I’m super proud of taking this step! Horray Week seven!
Next Monday: Creating a Continuum Program
Read your way through all of the blogs in the 9-week challenge:
WEEK ONE – One blog make one a blogger?
WEEK TWO – Presidential Pitches
WEEK THREE – Cheese or Font?
WEEK FOUR – Baby’s…got…Klout
WEEK FIVE – Video Killed the Radio Star
WEEK SIX – blogs from a diarist