She’s invited me to ask a question related to the book (which I LOVED!!!), so here goes . . .
You have so many good ideas! And you have a great point that the added images to the newsletter might boost sales of my artworks and custom works enough where it more than pays for the added cost. But I'm not sure I would feel comfortable charging for a newsletter. If I did charge wouldn't that put people off signing up for my newsletter? And isn't the idea to get as many people on your newsletter list as possible?
I do worry when I send the newsletter that I am bugging people so I put it off and I put it off. I feel that the blog is more passive so when people want to read about me they do it on their terms rather than me jumping into their email box.
Now for the book giveaway!!
Mary Catherine you are the contest winner of Alyson's book! I will contact you so I can send you out your copy! yay!
Have a great weekend!!!
In answer to you being afraid of bothering people with your newsletter I agree with Alyson, but also if someone is bothered getting your newsletter it's easy enough for them to delete it or to unsubscribe (though I'm sure not many people would)!! Not too much of a bother to my way of thinking. You must send it out!!
With something like constant contact you get a clear picture of what people think of your newsletter, because you can look at your stats. Who opened it, who didn't and what articles were of the most interest.
I know an artist who sends out a "photo of the week". It features her photography - and I just love receiving it.
Personally, I use aweber.com for sending out my newsletters. I like sharing beauty and useful tips rather than barraging people with offers. My signups have increased dramatically as a result.
If you are a bit technical or you can hire them to do the install I think phplists is great. That's what I'm using.
Once it's set up you are good to go with sending out an html newsletter anytime you want from your own website and it's free every time.
I'm on Alyson's blog book tour next week. We did a podcast - it was fun and I'm looking forward to sharing it with everyone.
I do agree with Tricia, maybe if I paid $30 a month it would force me to send out more newsletters because I am paying for it! LOL!
You know how I love my newsletter! I use Constant Contact. Be sure to ask them for a discount-they will often work with you if you have a large list because they get exposure too. Another good way to offset the cost is to offer ads to other artists who would like to get some exposure to your large list. As an ezine publisher & reader, I don't mind seeing one of two ads that will introduce me to new artists. I find sales always go up after I send out my newsletter. I have a tip sheet all about newsletters-email me & I can send it to you.
The information in your blog is great!! Useful!!!
However, I had a difficult time reading the entry because of the distracting changing images to the right of the text. The flashing really bothered me. When I got below the flashing, it was much better.
The newsletter thing is difficult. There are pros & cons to each method and content, etc. I know you will figure it out!
Thanks for hosting Alyson's tour. I loved your site and blog. And I adore the picture of the sleeping puppy.
I think people would love to hear from you and Alyson has great tips in her book about making your newsletter something people can't wait to get.
I do a daily newsletter that people pay to receive and only on occassion does someone tell me that it is too much. Most people are looking for connection. I bet your people want to hear from you as much as possible.
I would highly recommend you use something like Constant Contact because as Alyson says, could you sale something or highlight your art in a much better way and make it worth your while to do. I would think the aim of the newsletter would be to educate and generate sales. It could pay for itself.
Alyson's newsletter is an amazing example of what you could do. I have actually gone and looked at the art she highlights in her newsletter because it peaks my interest.
I'm so glad to have found you also through the blog tour. Your work is amazing and I so appreciate your question, Alyson's response and all the informational comments. Thank you everyone. I believe I will give vertical response a try as well as join your mailing list.
The power of your image on Alyson's Feedblitz got me curious to read and see your blog. Your images and blog are great! I too have gone back and forth weighing the Constant Contact, Vertical Response or Emma jump. I have made my blog subscribable through feedblitz as one step. My other "free" working tool is that I have a page on my website that I use as a newsletter and I actually forward that page to close to 2000 people. Yes it takes time to mail all of the email addresses but it is always worth it.
Nice to meet you!