The goal of content marketing is to keep in front of your audience, not in a pushy “here, here, come buy my stuff” kind of way; more of a “hey there, I just want to make your life a bit easier because I’m awesome” kind of way.
But finding the time to write blogs, send email newsletters, create videos and podcasts… It can be a struggle.
So you have to prioritise in order to get maximum returns on the time you spend at it.
Blogs versus newsletters
It used to be that newsletters were emailed to people, while blogs needed people to come to your website to read them. That gave newsletters more reach, but this has not been the case for a long time now. With the stroke of a WordPress widget, you can set up an email subscription for your blog, with each new post being sent to readers.
So, do email newsletters still have a place in your marketing calendar? If you had to choose, what would you spend your time on: blogging or emailing newsletters?
Let’s run through some of the considerations with blogging.
- The content sits on your website and is indexed by Google (so can be good for your SEO).
- Posts cover one topic in a reasonable amount of depth, allowing you to share your knowledge and to position yourself as a subject matter expert.
- Blog posts let you target long-tail keywords.
- Blog posts generally aren’t promotional, so people aren’t turned off by your pitch.
- Readers can subscribe to have the latest post delivered via email or to their RSS readers.
- Blog posts can be more shareable, with sharing plugins hovering next to your every word.
- Blogs encourage comments and discussion, which are flags of an engaged audience.
- Good blog posts give you great content to share across your social media pages, providing you with a strong foundation for your social media strategy.
Now, let’s shine a spotlight on email newsletters.
- Newsletters are usually more company-centric. You can include more promotional content and company news, giving you a chance to big up yourself a little more obviously.
- Newsletters are a hardworking lead generation tool for your business.
- Newsletters have a number of articles and can cover a range of topics on one theme.
- Newsletters generally don’t allow for in-depth coverage of a topic.
- Unless you save a newsletter on your website, it isn’t indexed by Google (so you miss out on some SEO love).
- You can target different segments of your database with different newsletter content.
Which do you choose?
As you can tell, blogging and newsletters both add value when we talk about your content marketing strategy—they let you build an email list (and emails are powerful stock).
I think blogs add more value and strength to your ‘home base’ (your website); therefore, if I had to choose, I would choose to write blogs rather than send out email newsletters.
But, you can do both.
Tips on rocking a blog and a newsletter
I think a smart way to approach email newsletters is to use them as a collation of recent blog posts. As long as you have an email subscription option, you still build your list, but your newsletter serves as a preview reel for the awesome content on your blog (encouraging readers to visit your website).
To spice up your newsletter content, include more content from around the web. Share interesting blogs from thought leaders, great tweets and other social media updates, events your readers might be interested in—even jokes, quizzes and stories (if that fits with your brand).
This kind of collation lets you become more than a subject matter expert; you become a hub of knowledge.
Here are a few more hints:
- Make it easy for people to subscribe.
- Give them a great reason to subscribe.
- Encourage readers to share your content.
- Promote your newsletters and your blogs.
- Keep readers interested with awesome content.
Have you chosen?
Have you chosen between blogging and sending out an email newsletter? Or do you do both? How do you keep it fresh? Do tell!
Terrific Belinda – was just pondering this very question and up your thoughts popped! 🙂
Thanks Charlotte. You know it’s because I can read your mind, right? 😉
Yes, like all good copywriters!
This is a great post! I currently offer both a blog and an email newsletter, and am pleased to say that I already use the newsletter to collate posts and offer a round-up of blog content. I’m now looking into how I can make the newsletter even more interesting by offering industry news and exclusive content that relates to my key values as an entrepreneur.
Thanks Marie! Sounds like you are on track to make more of your email newsletter.
This guest post I wrote for the Australian Businesswomen’s Network might be of interest:
Thanks Belinda! I’ll definitely have a read of that article. Have a great day!
This is a very useful post! I run my own blog and I really wanna send newsletter to my readers. What do you think about using email marketing software like this one http://www.getresponse.com/ ?
I don’t know that one Jennifer but most of the big ones (Mailchimp etc) are really solid and have some great free functionality. To use at least one of them is essential!
This is a great post! I currently offer both a blog and an email newsletter
Much appreciated. A great follow up to this would be what’s allowed in an email.I think newsletter is a good addition to other social media channels.
When you say, what is allowed… do you mean from a legal point of view or what is recommended for a great newsletter?
Well I think Blog or Email newsletter both are important in their own way. It depends on the situation which must used.
Great post! I currently give email newsletter via Mailchimp.
Mailchimp is such a great tool. I started my first newsletter then my blog with Mailchimp in 2010 and I only switched to ConvertKit in 2018!
I blog regularly but only recently have considered doing a newsletter. Do I need two separate subscribe options, one for posts and one for the newsletter? Can I have one subscribe button for both as long as I’m informing the reader?
Great idea Marie! As long as you are clear with subscribers, it shouldn’t be an issue. You can always write your offer (of what they will be getting) so it covers both.
Like, Get regular updates and news your inbox! That said, the more specific you can be about the value you’re offering, the more compelling the offer is.
Thank you Belinda for such an informative article. I have been trying to decided whether I would even do any of these options but you have made it clear that at least one option is a ‘must’.
I have a new website started with Wix, a friend is doing it for me but it is such a learning curve. I love writing and will definitely do a blog and probably a newsletter when I understand it more. The whole email marketing is so very confusing.
Thank you again.
Thanks for sharing this useful information! Hope that you will continue with the kind of stuff you are doing.