Author Topic: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?  (Read 286 times)

Joe Vasicek

What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« on: November 05, 2018, 04:46:21 PM »
I'm trying to build my mailing list to 10,000 subscribers, preferably most of them organic. I have links to the email list subscribe page on my blog at the front and back of all of my books, with a 4-book bundle for a newsletter incentive in the backmatter (basically, a four book sampler containing two permafrees, a short story, and a book I wrote on my blog).

I've been on Prolific Works for several years now, and gotten many subscribers from that, but I'd prefer to get organic signups if at all possible (though I suppose, if all of your giveaways are opt-in, that could be considered "organic"). Lately, I've found that running featured deals on sites/newsletters like BookBub, Freebooksy, Book Barbarian, etc all increase the rate at which readers sign up for my email list, but not as much as I would like.

What techniques have you guys found to help increase organic newsletter signups?
 

Lysmata Debelius

Re: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2018, 05:13:07 PM »
...snip  Lately, I've found that running featured deals on sites/newsletters like BookBub, Freebooksy, Book Barbarian, etc all increase the rate at which readers sign up for my email list, but not as much as I would like.  ...snip

I wondered about this - how do these lead to email list singups? From people seeing the singup call to action in the backmatter of the books they downloaded as a result of the featured deal?
Genres: Contemporary Fantasy and Science Fiction


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sFABi

Re: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« Reply #2 on: November 05, 2018, 06:45:19 PM »
The answer is probably visibility. With a BB (as an example) you get millions of people viewing your books/profile in the space of several days, a week maybe. That kind of concentration is going to give you more effective results in drawing people to your sign-ups.

It's always a numbers game, but if you're looking for 'organic' you can't go out and try and drag them in, so you're back to visibility being the key. Concentrate on that and your answer might follow.

That being the case you're already doing it. You just need to do more of it until you start getting the numbers you want. There will come a time in that where the work will drop off, but the numbers will continue to increase because you've put a lot of material out there that will continue to accumulate benefits.
Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.
When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive - to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.
Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking.
Marcus Aurelius
 
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Simon Haynes

Re: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2018, 08:02:18 PM »
I'm using a dozen perma-free shorts to push my mailing list signups. In those, I offer the first book in one of my series, and I switch the book from fantasy to SF depending on the genre of the story.


 
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oganalp

Re: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2018, 01:05:53 AM »
As a reader, one thing I realized is that I hate opt-in popups and perma-frees. I don't even read what is written in that box. And as an author, I am trying to avoid the things that I hate as a reader.

Perhaps not the best marketing strategy, but it is what it is (and, as the cliché goes, it is hard to market oneself).

Of course, my mail list crawls in means of reader numbers, haha. So, I am all ears (eyes?) to the suggestions posted here.

Oganalp Canatan | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads
 

Rob Martin

Re: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« Reply #5 on: November 09, 2018, 01:22:47 AM »
As a reader, one thing I realized is that I hate opt-in popups and perma-frees. I don't even read what is written in that box. And as an author, I am trying to avoid the things that I hate as a reader.

Perhaps not the best marketing strategy, but it is what it is (and, as the cliché goes, it is hard to market oneself).

Of course, my mail list crawls in means of reader numbers, haha. So, I am all ears (eyes?) to the suggestions posted here.

I tried to do this too and my mailing list gained 25 average additional signups monthly over the course of 3 months. Then I added the popup without making any additional changes and my signups jumped to 49 average additional signups over the next 3 months. Nothing else had changed, no additional advertising, no new releases, nada. The popup may be annoying and possibly even blocked by most people's browsers, but it is still effective nonetheless.
I write because I want to, not because of the woman standing over my shoulder holding a particularly pointy object. Right, dear?
 
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Simon Haynes

Re: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2018, 03:33:54 AM »
Source of the last 50 signups (in the past 2 weeks)

15 from my website(s), where they clicked on banner ads offering a free book
15 from signups in the back/front of my permafree shorts
11 from Instafreebie/Prolific Works
1 from a facebook ad, which hasn't been live for 3 weeks
7 unknown (source blank, not sure why. Possibly older published ebooks which used a generic signup form.)

(I've miscounted one somewhere. It's very late, and I'm not going to go through the list again!)

I keep track of where they came from, and which book they got for free as well.

 
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Joe Vasicek

Re: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« Reply #7 on: November 09, 2018, 03:36:10 AM »
...snip  Lately, I've found that running featured deals on sites/newsletters like BookBub, Freebooksy, Book Barbarian, etc all increase the rate at which readers sign up for my email list, but not as much as I would like.  ...snip

I wondered about this - how do these lead to email list singups? From people seeing the singup call to action in the backmatter of the books they downloaded as a result of the featured deal?

Pretty much.
 

Joe Vasicek

Re: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« Reply #8 on: November 09, 2018, 03:38:20 AM »
Simon, how do you track the sources for your newsletter signups? All of my signup links point to a static page on my blog, as opposed to the actual mailing list service, in case I ever decide to change which service I use. Do you use something like bit.ly to track everything, and if so, how did you set it up?
« Last Edit: November 09, 2018, 03:40:21 AM by Joe Vasicek »
 

Simon Haynes

Re: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« Reply #9 on: November 09, 2018, 01:36:33 PM »
Simon, how do you track the sources for your newsletter signups? All of my signup links point to a static page on my blog, as opposed to the actual mailing list service, in case I ever decide to change which service I use. Do you use something like bit.ly to track everything, and if so, how did you set it up?


I use bookfunnel.  Every signup has a custom URL, and when I configure the landing page at that URL I can tell BF which variables to forward to Mailerlite. E.g. I set the 'Source' to backmatter/facebook/website/etc and then I set a custom variable for which book they're downloading.



 
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ragdoll

Re: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« Reply #10 on: November 09, 2018, 02:43:59 PM »
I once set a short story free and at the end of it offered a bonus chapter for signing up. It's not a great conversion rate in once sense in that I gave away more than 35k copies and only got about 1500 sign-ups. On the other hand, both short and bonus chapter came in under 11k, took me about two days and that group of 1500 subscribers was very loyal for a long time. Also, I did not advertise the free short story, I just uploaded it and set it free.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2018, 02:47:53 PM by ragdoll »
 
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NathanBurrows

Re: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« Reply #11 on: November 14, 2018, 07:51:07 PM »
Simon, how do you track the sources for your newsletter signups? All of my signup links point to a static page on my blog, as opposed to the actual mailing list service, in case I ever decide to change which service I use. Do you use something like bit.ly to track everything, and if so, how did you set it up?


I use bookfunnel.  Every signup has a custom URL, and when I configure the landing page at that URL I can tell BF which variables to forward to Mailerlite. E.g. I set the 'Source' to backmatter/facebook/website/etc and then I set a custom variable for which book they're downloading.

I'm using BookFunnel as well, but put the subscribers into groups on Mailerlite depending on what they've signed up for (I write in two genres - thriller and dark comedy). There is an additional cost on Mailerlite for this, but it's pretty nominal, and it's a useful way to target the readers down the line.

Simon Haynes

Re: What is the best way to increase organic newsletter signups?
« Reply #12 on: November 14, 2018, 09:02:01 PM »
Don't forget you can use custom fields, and on Bookfunnel you can apply data to one or more fields too.

E.g. I have a variable for each of my series, and I populate the one(s) they're interested in with a '1'.  Like you, that allows me to target newsletters at specific readers.