Friday, June 6, 2014

What makes an Author Newsletter?


Good morning, everyone. Audra here. Help yourself to waffles and fruit salad, and I’ve got coffee and tea for this morning with lemonade and iced tea cooling for this afternoon. I want everyone comfy and fed as we attack my topic of the day:


The author newsletter.


If you’re anything like me, I’m excited to receive newsletters from authors I enjoy. I look forward to the announcement in my email box every few months notifying me that there’s news from the important authors I follow—many are reading this post right now!!!!! As I conducted my research on writing newsletters, Julie Lessman directed me to a couple of great posts on author newsletters right here in Seekerville.


Valerie Comer compiled some wonderful advice in her post:  http://seekerville.blogspot.com/2013/01/guest-blogger-valerie-comer-where.html


Myra Johnson gave us tips on the construction of a newsletter in her post:  http://seekerville.blogspot.com/2012/07/author-e-newsletters-for-dummies.html


Pop over and check out their posts…I’ll wait…and come back and finish our visit!!

So, like I was saying, I’m writing a newsletter. I really didn’t think this was going to be tough. One of the responsibilities at my day job is compiling a monthly newsletter to send out to our 4-H families. The average length of one of my newsletters is about 20 pages. How difficult could a single page update on my writing career be??  As I stared at my blank screen, I realized I hadn’t a clue what to include and how to be brief about it. Others made it look so easy. I’ve received newsletters from authors with great content that kept me informed of books and events and other special “extras” they offered, all wrapped up in an artsy newsletter layout. Their newsletters looked GREAT. But, how did they do it? How did they know what to include?

It’s not about me. It’s about the reader.

Number One thing to keep in mind when compiling a newsletter is it’s all about the reader. What do your subscribers want to read about in your newsletter?  They want to get to know YOU and they want it personal. A newsletter’s first and foremost purpose is to get the reader involved with your brand. Make sure you include any or all of the following:

§  Announcements for the release of your latest book
§  Promotions you’re offering and special deals on your book
§  Are you running a special contest? Get the word out!
§  Special awards and “warm your cockles” reviews you’ve received
§  What’s coming up next?
§  Events you’ll be attending; blog appearances; special interviews
§  Direct folks to book trailers and other cool marketing ideas you’ve developed

Remember, it’s all for THEM.

Make YOU memorable in your newsletter.

I know you’ve heard it before, but in all ways of marketing, stay true to your brand. Are you a suspense writer? Then you probably don’t want to include clipart of cute magnolia blossoms or a comforting cup of tea. Ideally, you’d like your newsletter to reflect the theme of your website to build author recognition. If possible, use your website header on your newsletter. Readers need to associate you with all your branding elements. Missy Tippens offers an excellent example of branding as she projects the warm Southern manner of her website onto her newsletter.  



Platform building…one board at a time.

I write about “cowboys who haven't a clue about relationships rescued by ladies who think they have all the answers.” I love all things farm, ranch and cowboy… and I hope my readers do, too! My platform includes information about the agriculture industry, and the intrigue of the lifestyle of the West…and maybe… the occasional recipe. I want people to know that the honor of the American cowboy is still alive and doing well on the ranches of Colorado.

Keep in mind some do’s and don’t’s:
§  DO write your newsletter in the first person. There’s nothing more personal than letting your readers know you are sharing directly with them.
§  DO include a variety of content in your newsletter. You can touch on many areas of interest and include link for your readers to click through to get more information.
§  DO include your book cover (and a link to buy the book) in the newsletter. After all, that is our primary reason for creating a newsletter, right? To let our followers know we have a book and there are more to come!
§  DON’T put long, wordy pieces in a newsletter. Give your readers blurbs of your content, not entire novels (save that for the bookshelves!).
§  DON’T make your newsletter static. Give your fans the opportunity to take action, like enter a contest, friend you on Facebook or buy your book.


Of course, I asked the Seekers if they had any tips to share:

Myra Johnson:

I attended a webinar recently that highly promoted auto-responder to communicate with new subscribers and let them know what's happening between now and the next newsletter, which I also try HARD to do quarterly, plus the rare special announcement.

I've also read that you should put signup links everywhere you can, including email sig lines, to make it as easy as possible. 

My newsletters include something personal (travel, family news generic enough to share, etc.), recent novels I've read, latest release info, and other book news, plus upcoming appearances in person or on blogs. 

Don’t miss Myra Johnson’s newsletter. It’s always packed with great info.

Missy Tippens:

I aim for quarterly [newsletters] but sometimes wait until I have a new cover to share or some news. I've been building my list since my first book signing. I have a signup form on my websites and blog that is double opt-in so I know people won't consider me spam. I usually have a short personal greeting, then a section of book news. I sometimes share a recipe or photo. And I've also shared upcoming Seeker releases with links.

Check out Missy Tippens’s website and sign up for her newsletter.

Pam Hillman:

I put out 4 very simple, short newsletters a year: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter during the months of March, June, Sept, and Dec. I try to just give them 2-3 bullet points for what's on my agenda for the upcoming months. In each section, I try to include a writing update and a personal update. At the bottom of all of them, I include a photo of something that makes me smile: old barns, puppies, calves, wildflowers, etc. I'll be sending my June newsletter out soon, and I'll give an update on what all I'll be doing this summer in June/July/August.

If you haven’t signed up for Pam’s newsletter, go to www.pamhillman.com

Mary Connealy:

I try and do what I'm calling eblasts. A straightforward email as each book releases using the Yahoo group I've created.

Contact Mary Connealy and become a member of her Yahoo group!


There’s so much more to creating newsletters than we’ve discussed here such as distribution, building a mailing list, etc. What I wanted to share today was the actual content of the newsletter since my very first one will launch the middle of this month!!!! Have you signed up for my newsletter? I’d be honored if you did. And I look forward to receiving comments through my website www.audraharders.com on what you thought of it. What would you like to see in future issues? I’m a lump of clay in the newsletter world and I’d love for you to help shape me : ) My promotion this Summer Issue (June) is a $25 Amazon Gift Card for just subscribing, the winner will be announced in the newsletter. Click here and sign up for my newsletter!!



AND, those leaving comments today will be in a drawing for one of two copies of Second Chance Ranch – one Kindle copy and one paperback. If you have a preference, please leave that in your comment. Winners will be announced in the Weekend Edition.

Until next time, blessings to you!!!!!!!!


Once high school sweethearts, Jennifer and Zac have wounded each other, and the scars run deep. Jennifer is forced to reveal a secret she’s protected for twelve years. Will past mistakes jeopardize the future of both of their dreams or give them a second chance?




81 comments:

Helen Gray said...

Subscribed and confirmed. Ta da!

Coffee's already provided.

Now if I only had the gumption to start a newsletter.

Marianne Barkman said...

Helen .. You can do it! Thanks, Audra...enjoyed this. No book for me!

Melissa Jagears said...

Thanks for the post, goaded me into making a list of things I could put in my newsletters to fatten them up a bit when it's thin rather than stare at the next one and think......what else to include? Now I got myself a list!

Melissa Jagears said...

Oh, and if you want an excellent example of a newsletter I think Margaret Brownley's is excellent!

Loves To Read said...

Great job Audra. Lots of really good info. Please include me in the drawing for the paperback.

Jenny Blake said...

Im still in the city but wanted to comment. I have signed up to way to many author newsletters. (some by accident). I like the quarterly ones as monthly seems to often for me. I like knowing when a book is coming out and I have to say a contest where a subscriber can win a book etc is great.
I also like learning about the author.
One thing I do hate is when an author has signed me up to a newsletter just because I have in some way contacted them maybe for an interview, or to say I loved a book or even cos I reviewed a book for a blog alliance so have then been added to a mailing list without my permission, oh sometimes its been from visiting a blog. One I went to was all types of books but I supported the Christian writers and ended up subscribed to writers who wrote racy fiction which I don't read.

Laura Russell said...

Hi Audra,
Excellent post! Good luck on your release. I would be thrilled to win either version!

Laura Russell said...

Hi Audra,
Excellent post! Good luck on your release. I would be thrilled to win either version!

Kav said...

I haven't signed up for many newsletters but I'm going to change that. Like the idea of a bit of friendly author chatter in my mailbox every so often. And love the idea of being kept informed of new releases. Makes you wonder what authors did before the internet.

Debby Giusti said...

Audra, great info about newsletters. I don't have one...yet! Another item on my to do list. You make it sound do easy. :)

Glynna Kaye said...

Great tips, Audra! Can't wait to receive your newsletter!

Glynna Kaye said...

Great tips, Audra! Can't wait to receive your newsletter!

Jackie said...

Hi Audra,

Thanks for sharing these great tips!

Jackie said...

Helen,

You can do it! Let me know when and I'll sign up.

Have a great weekend!

Audra Harders said...

I love ta-da's, Helen. They make me feel so accomplished : )

Listen to your gumption. One must never mess with gumption!!!

Audra Harders said...

Thanks, Marianne! I'm with you...You can do it, Helen!!

Audra Harders said...

Melissa, I'm glad my few suggestions helped. I'm serious about looking at the blank screen and wondering "what do people want to know about me?" Pretty daunting, especially since I consider my life rahter...routine.

Thanks for the suggestion about peeking at Margaret Brownley's newsletter. I will go subscribe.

Mary Hicks said...

I love newsletters! But I don't subscribe to as many now as I used to. My inbox become a major time drag with all the 'news' to read each day.:-)

I cleared back to just a select few—like three a month.

But good information to have on file—just in case, thanks, Audra! :-)

Audra Harders said...

Jenny, you bring up some great points about readers being subscribed to author newsletters. I'm finding it a very fine line. When Rocky Mountain Hero came out, I had lots of folks ask about the next book. Since this will be my inaugral newsletter, I'm going to include them in it and very specifically say they'd shown interest in my upcoming releases. If they want to unsubscribe, my feelings will NOT be hurt.

I know all about overcrowded mail boxes...

Audra Harders said...

Morning, Laura! I've got you in the drawing!!

Audra Harders said...

Kav, I'd be honored if you joined mine : ) I promise it'll be short and sweet...arrive 4 times a year...and hopefully I'll have something interesting to say, LOL!

Audra Harders said...

Oh my, I'm not being much of a hostess, am I?

Bowls of berries and mixed fruit salad because berries and pineapples are on sale this week, LOL! I've brought pound cake and angel food cake, along with a huge stack of hot waffles and cream just waiting for berries to be sprinkled on them!!!

Audra Harders said...

Debby, not easy! BUT, I decided it's my way of communicating with my readers because I'm not very consistent when it comes to social media.

Frankly, I'm scared to death of social media because once I peek at Facebook...I'm a goner for at least an hour or two. Some much great chit chat to follow, I end up spending the evening enjoying the conversations when I should be writing!!

Audra Harders said...

Thanks, Glynna! I can't wait for your opinion and feedback on it.

Remember folks, I'm looking for pointers (and of course praise, LOL!!!)

Audra Harders said...

Thanks, Jackie.

I think between all of us today, we might encourage Helen to start a newsletter of her own!!!!

cathyann40 said...

I'd love to win a copy of this. Enjoyed the post.

Audra Harders said...

Mary Hicks, I know all about overstuffed mail boxes! Sometimes I lose important infor for all the uninvited stuff that clogs up my screen.

Spring cleaning of email. A definite must on my to-do list!!

Tina Radcliffe said...

I am. A newsletter. Failure.

kaybee said...

Oh, maybe I'm crazy, but I can't WAIT to put out a newsletter and connect with readers. I know it's not easy, none of it is, but I'm game. Thank you Audra.
Wouldn't mind being entered in drawing. Summer. Beach reading.
KB

Melanie Dickerson said...

HEEEEEEEEYYYYYYYYY, AUDRA!!!!!! :-)
Great post on newsletters! I decided a long time ago that I just didn't have enough brain cells to do an author newsletter. Hahaha! I know I probably should take the time to do it, but ... I don't. I knew an author who had a fabulous newsletter. Every month she spent loads of time creating this beautiful newsletter full of all kinds of great content for her readers. But she was hardly writing at all, and she finally stopped doing the newsletter after going years without a contract. But all in all, I do think newsletters are a great idea. But I guess the moral of my story is, don't spend more time on your newsletter than on writing books. :-) But I do want to sign up for yours, Audra!!! :-) HUGS!

Audra Harders said...

You're in the drawing, cathyann!

Audra Harders said...

Tina. No. You are not.

A failure at ANYTHING!!!

Different promos for different folks. I couldn't begin to keep up with you, babe!!!

Jennifer Smith said...

I love this! Thanks for this info...I'm saving this for future reference. And I'd love to be entered for your book in paperback. :)

Audra Harders said...

KB, you got it!

I like the creative side to newsletters. I just wish I could use Publisher as my template as I'm familiar with it. Convert it to pdf format and voila! it's a newsletter!

If anyone knows of a distribution system that will let me do that, I'd be ETERNALLY GRATEFUL!!!!!

Tina Radcliffe said...

Actually, though I am having a difficult time taking the first step on this, I must admit this is all quite helpful. Arrgh.

Tina Radcliffe said...

Melanie just scared me. Tell her to stop.

Audra Harders said...

Melanie!!!!! Good to chat with you, my friend : ) Don't you dare let anything get in the way of your fairytale retellings or Regencies!!!!! I love 'em more than newsletters : )

I think I'd not spend the time on a newsletter if I wasn't so comfortable with them. I have to compile and send a newsletter out each month to my 4-H peeps, so it's kind of second nature.

Hey, if Facebook works...go for it!
If Twitter works...tweet away!

I get lost for HOURS in the depths of Facebook. Now THAT will keep me from writing books. LOL!!!

Audra Harders said...

You're welcome, Jennifer. And YES, you are in the drawing!!!

Audra Harders said...

Melanie, stop scaring Tina.

NOW!!

Mary Connealy said...

You remember the song "Beauty School Dropout" from Grease?

For some reason that's rattling in my head only it's "Newsletter Dropout"

I'm a newsletter failure. :( I am FULL OF REGRET!

Mary Connealy said...

Someone once told me all an author really needs is a newsletter with 50,000 subscribers to be a huge success.


Uh........so.........yeah, that's not hard.

Audra Harders said...

I don't think I have enough pink in my wardrobe to come close to Beauty School Dropout. And hairspray makes me sneeze :)

And Mary. Your Yahoo eblasts are just as good--if not better than--a newsletter.

You just sent one out yesterday or the day before announcing the release of Stuck Together. It was wonderful and to the point.

Did everyone get this email blast? If not sign up for Mary's Yahoo group, Just For Laughs.

You'll be glad you did : )

Audra Harders said...

50,000 subscribers???

Piece of cake...

Mary Connealy said...

That one little stumbling block....getting 50,000 people to sign up.


Except for that, it's a brilliant idea.

Lyndee H said...

Hi Audra,

Your tips, especially the first one - it's about the reader, not you - is a great reminder.
Dare I admit that as a real estate Broker I paid for pre-written newsletters? Oh, the shame! But at least I gave a writer a decent paying assignment. And she had much better recipes to put in there then I did. Ha!

Jeanne T said...

Audra, this is a great post on newsletters! I signed up for yours, and I'm looking forward to receiving them. :) Your do's and don'ts are very helpful. I haven't begun a newsletter yet, but I'll be referring back to this one when I do. :)

Thanks for sharing this post!

Stephanie Queen Ludwig said...

Hi Audra! I LOVE receiving author newsletters, but I'm only signed up for a handful. I think it's great to do one every quarter, or even twice a year (depending on your output), and maybe an occasional eblast when you have a new book coming out that isn't even close to your newsletter time frame.

While I am not published right now, I do put together a monthly e-newsletter for my day job, which I enjoy. I try to have a combination of news, upcoming events, photos, and since I work for a symphony orchestra, there is always a spotlight article on a musician. I also include a trivia section about one of our upcoming concerts (either the composer, guest artist, or era of music). I don't write ALL of the content, but a majority of it. It's given me lots of ideas of what I want to include in my eventual author newsletter!

Please include me in the drawing for a paperback copy. Looks like fun!

Stephanie Queen Ludwig said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Brenda Anderson said...

Thank you, thank you, Audra! I'm just beginning to plan my first enewsletter, and your information helps me out tremendously!

Janet Dean said...

Audra, excellent advice on newsletter content! Like you I enjoy receiving newsletters from my favorite authors. I always enjoy the Seeker's of course. I'm also impressed with Debbie Macomber's newsletters. I'm looking forward to receiving your first!

I haven't taken this step. I haven't been good about building a mailing list. One day!

Janet

Audra Harders said...

Lyndee, it's all about getting the information out there. I don't have the funds to pay someone to write about me (OMG, what would I tell them??), but if I did, it could be fun to see what they came up with, LOL!

I'm certain they'd come up with better recipes, LOL!

Audra Harders said...

Jeanne T, you're too sweet. Thanks for signing up. Remember to give me feedback once you receive it. Yes, I want to make it something readers want to read!!

Audra Harders said...

Stephanie Queen, your situation sounds like mine. I create a monthly newsletter with content contributed by others, along with pieces I write. I love the spotlight on the musician or composer idea. You've given me lots of additional tips that can be included. THANK YOU!

Remember, the author newsletter needs to be short, sweet and to the point. That's the hardest part for me. Gotta work on condensing so people will READ it!!

I'm printing out YOUR tips, Stephanie!!

Audra Harders said...

Yay, Brenda! So, where do we sign up for your newsletter!! Don't keep it a secret!

Sandra Leesmith said...

HI Audra, Well you are inspiring me to get busy and publish a newsletter. To be honest, I rarely read them as have so much email to wade through and it takes time to read newsletters. But I know readers like them so maybe I should try it.

Great tips and advice. smile

Audra Harders said...

Janet, thanks for the tip on Debbie Macomber's newsletter. I'll pop over and subscibe.

I'm not pushing anyone to write a newsletter, but I'll enourage the brave souls who'd like to : ) I'll be the first one to sign up for yours if you ever choose to go that route, Janet!!

Audra Harders said...

Sandra, my friend. I think you'd have an amazing newsletter with all the research you do! Readers would love to learn about all your behind-the-scenes work to make your settings and stories come alive.

It just takes time, right? LOL, anyone have some extra time to spare?? : )

Susan Anne Mason said...

Hi Audra,

This is great information! I'll have to start thinking about creating a newsletter now!

I have a question for all you savy writers out there. I'm looking to update my website, which I created myself from a template, but which now doesn't fit for several reasons.

Any good advice on how to go about getting a website designed?

I got one quote for approx. $1500 and have no idea if this is a good price or terribly expensive. Also should I get author shots done separately and provide to the designer or would the designer do that themselves?

I'm asking b/c I like how Audra's newsletter ties in to her webpage, so I don't want to put the cart before the horse, so to speak!

Thanks ladies. Will check back later!

Sue

Donna said...

Hi, Audra. I'm all signed up. The cover of Second Chance Ranch is wonderful! I'd like to be entered to win a copy.

Melanie Dickerson said...

Haha! Sorry, Tina! I can be such a downer sometimes. It's my cynical nature coming through. I try to keep it hidden but it escapes sometimes. I'll go shove it back in its deep dark dungeon now. ;-)

Myra Johnson said...

AUDRA, great job on covering the most important points about developing an author newsletter!

Totally forgot I once did a post here on newsletters!!!! Thanks for reminding me!

I'm still working on developing an auto-responder message for new subscribers, and I have to say that's my one complaint about Vertical Response, my current newsletter service. They don't have the auto-responder option. MailChimp does, but I've learned that part costs (whereas you can use their general services for free).

JANET, I agree--Debbie Macomber's newsletters are really well done.

Vince said...

Hi Audra:

TMI Alert!


First, I must say that you’re a wonderful character in “Over the Edge”. In that book Audra looks just like the heroine on your “Second Chance Ranch” cover art. Now if you’d just put a major Mary character in that book, I could really have some major cognitive dissidence problems. : )

Second, your new book, “Second Chance Ranch” has me by the throat! It has crowded out every other book I was reading. I have to finish it soon so I can get back to the other cliffhangers. Kindle makes it too easy to just switch to a different book. (Cowboys, rodeo heroes, hidden child, adorable kids with cancer, camps and ranches and dreams of second chances – it’s almost shameless!!!)

Third, I’ve edited many newsletters over the years and even served as a newsletter consultant at times. What I have learned is all from the POV of direct marketing – not author PR – but some of my experience might be helpful.

1. The first job of a newsletter is to get noticed so that it can be read. Without getting noticed all other efforts are wasted. Make sure your email (or whatever) is immediately identified with you and your brand. It would be a mistake to have something like “AH332” appear in the sender line. Change email if you have to. And create a hook of a subject line.

2. The second job of a newsletter is to get read! You have to treat the headline or start of your newsletter as the first sentence in a romance. Hook ‘em!

3. The third job of a newsletter is to follow up immediately on the promise made in the headline which hooked the reader into reading it in the first place. Don’t go off on a tangent or delve into pretty prose. You would not do that in the second line of your novel.

4. The fourth job of a newsletter is to reward the reader for reading it. Give readers useful information they want. Entertain them with items they will enjoy reading. No one has to read your newsletter. To keep readers reading, keep rewarding them. “What gets rewarded gets done.” (Yes, I am working on RPP).

5. The fifth job of a newsletter is to be “newsy”. That’s the whole point of a newsletter as opposed to just a letter. Readers should be 'hearing' things first in your newsletter. The information should not already be available on the internet. If the information is already out there, then it is not news. It’s just more advertising.

6. The sixth job of a newsletter is to be exclusive. Your readers are special. Insiders. They should hear things first. They may also learn things that might not appear anywhere else. This is very important in creating genuine reader interest and generating reader loyalty.

7. The seventh job of a newsletter is to carry your water in a way that readers find irresistible to read. (I know, that’s like a mouse putting a bell on the cat.) If you want to accomplish x, y, and z in a newsletter, then work those goals into the copy in ways that are compatible with the first six points given above.

Of course, you don’t have to write a newsletter. You can choose to write like in a magazine (I think Julie Lessman’s is like a magazine – a newsletter should look rushed and newsy while a magazine should look highly polished.) You can also elect to write simple letters from home (these can be very effective if kept from looking commercial). As an alternative to these, you can simply create one page broadside announcements.

Not everyone writing newsletters is really writing newsletters. Determine which format is best for your writing and marketing situation. All the other advice on newsletters is fine and helpful. I believe it is important to learn from all you can.

Again: this advice is based on tested direct marketing results. It is information for copywriters whose ads must be profitable or they get fired. It’s really hardcore marketing. If anyone can use any of this information, I wish them well.

BTW: If you don’t have anything new to put in a newsletter, write more books. I’d rather read your books. : ) (Attn: Missy and Janet) :)).

Audra Harders said...

Hi Sue,

Thanks for the compliment on my website. That's another thing I'm scounging around for content. Slow, but steady.

I bought my domain name and use it through WordPress. They have tons of themes and it's easy to make changes. I also kept my blog at Blogger, but it's directed to my website.

I can't afford a web designer, so I check out Seeker sites and snatch ideas from them.

Keeping my theme consistent is a big deal to me. So I try to incorporate my header in each of my website-blog-newsletter. I'd love to have the same exact look for all of them, but that's not in the cards right now.

I hope others pipe in about this. I'd like to know, too : )

Audra Harders said...

You're in the drawing, Donna!!!

Myra Johnson said...

Seriously??? We need 50,000 newsletter subscribers to be a success???

Let's see . . . at my current subscriber rate . . . that could take only . . . 50 years or so.

Don't think I'm gonna make it that long.

Audra Harders said...

Melanie, how can someone who's accent makes them sound so sweet have a mean streak?? Yikes!!

Just listen to yourself talk and the soft lilt of your beatiful southern accent will shoo away all thoughts of dark dungeons...

And being mean to TINA!!!

Audra Harders said...

Oops! That was supposed to be STOP being mean to TINA!!!

Tina Radcliffe said...

Melly, Melly, Melly! You cynical? Who knew. You look so sweet and naive.

Audra Harders said...

Vince, you are a game changer. A golden nugget of information from the finest mine -- and a game changer.

I'll be back to finish that thought : )

Melanie Dickerson said...

Haha! Tina, all these years of being sweet and naive is why I am so cynical. Think about it. ;-)

Audra, I'll stick to being mean to my characters. Which is what I have to go do right now!

Audra Harders said...

Hi All, I'm back. Sorry for the delay. Issues other than Seekerville were demanding my attention.

Can you imagine that??

Vince, back to all your words of wisdom. I should have consulted you before writing on this topic : ) Every point you brought up made me think. I especially liked your comparison of a newsletter to my idea of a newspaper rather than a magazine...don't we all know Julie is the glossy one of the bunch???

Short, tight snippets of information. Got it.

Newsletter subscribers get the breaking news first - as a reward for reading my newsletter! Got it.

I liked the approach you mentioned about writing a letter, too. Now that might have merit eventually. I really like that idea.

Okay Vince. Sign up for my newsletter and be the first to give me pointers, K?

Audra Harders said...

Oh, and Vince? Thanks for the kind words for Second Chance Ranch. I love knowing I'm commandeering your Kindle : )

Jenny Blake said...

I have to admit I skim a lot of the newsletters I get. I like the ones that tell me whats happening like a new book out with a link to where I can get it. Or if a book is on special. I know some have recipes which I skip. But do like when subscribers have a chance of winning a book or something.

on signing up readers with the laws today I think there is something called double opt in (not sure the right name) but if a person signs up they then have an email sent which they then hit to say they agreed to sign up. I think if they are added normally they still get that option. Audra having the disclaimer saying why people who contacted you are getting the newsletter is a good idea as I do know of people who have been added to a newsletter and have then complained or have unsubscribed to the newsletter and you are asked why. one of the choices is added without permission and if you get to many the account can be closed. If they have asked for info in an email that is considered ok.

Julie Lessman said...

AUDS!!! Can't believe it took me this long to get here today!

But WORTH THE WAIT, my friend, because newsletters are SO important for an author as they are one of the best ways to stay in touch with their readers.

Lots of great tips here, and I do believe I need to check out Myra's suggestion of an auto-responder as well.

And waffles?? YUM!!! That would have beat my English muffin with a stick. :|

Hugs and Happy Weekend!!

Julie

Audra Harders said...

Jenny, you're right about the laws governing opting folks in without their approval. I hate spam myself, so I don't want anyone to think I'm intentionally targeting them.

And I really want to be upfront about sending my 1st newsletter to non-subscribers. Most times, folks will just get mad rather than stop and ask why they're receiving the newsletter.

I don't want that. I want people happy with me.

Don't we all : )

Audra Harders said...

Julie, I'm serving plain ol' waffles...you serve gourmet English muffins.

Big difference, my friend : )

Did you see how Vince compared you to a glossy magazine??? Yep, he's got you pegged. And not just your newsletter, but your blog posts, Journal Jots, BOOKS!!!

Ahhhh, to be so creative and talented. You make it all look good, kiddo!!!

Walt Mussell said...

Audra, the first thing that comes to mind is that I don't even want to think about this. However, the first advice you gave was the best. It's about the reader. (The same goes for the book.)

Preslaysa Williams said...

Great post with a lot of helpful information!

Audra Harders said...

LOL, Walt. I bet you'd have a fascinating newsletter!

It's all for the reader!!

Audra Harders said...

Thanks, Preslaysa!

Mary Preston said...

As a reader I LOVE author newsletters. Great to know which books are coming out when & all the little snippets of life in general.