Heavy newsletter segmenting for the calendar

TLDNR: Have them in a group and once they don’t want to be in there anymore, get them out.

I’m on classic MailerLite, so this instruction will be of most use to those who use them, too. But I should think you’d be able to work out how to adapt this to your EMS. And sadly, no, I won’t be able to help you. All I know is other EMS might call “groups” by another name: “tags” or “segments”.

This is meant to be a guideline and an instruction for those who want to do as I do. Always be consistent with your author voice.

Create a group

Go to subscribers, groups, and click that orange button and create a group. I’ve named mine „advent calendar round robin 2023“ because I’m terrible at remembering things and would like to know even in two years’ time what that group did and why I created it.

Populate that group

Who is going to get the emails? Your entire list, including even those in the welcome automation? Or just hand-picked subscribers? Or those who actively

Either: Chuck all your subscribers into this group

Go to subscribers, groups, and find the one you want to send these emails to. Click it to open.

Click that drop-down arrow and „Select all.“

A new button showed up. Click „Action“ and select „Add to group.“ Find the group you had created earlier and click it. Repeat for any other groups you want to send this to.

Or: Let your subscribers decide

In November and December, all your emails could have this section.

Send the people who click to a page on your website. Could be anything, it doesn’t even have to be a working link. But why would you send them out into nothing? This is meant to be a fun event, let’s make it truly enjoyable for our readers. Make it a proper link to a page you own.

Make those clicks count

So now they clicked on some arbitrary link, and we’ve got to make sure it puts them into the group.

Go to Automations. Click that button to create a new workflow.

Name that workflow something you’ll remember. Choose „When subscriber clicks a link“. Put in the link from that button in your email. In this example, that would be: https://ellabraeme.com/welcomesanta.htm

Click the + below and select action, then choose „Copy to a group“. In the sidebar, choose the group you had created earlier. Save.

So now your emails contain a button to sign up, that will put all those who click it into your calendar group. Great.

Which method to use?

I dunno. Both work. The first assumes that everybody on your list would be interested in the calendar. Which might be true. Or not.

The second gives them the option to sign in.

I haven’t decided yet, which method I will use. It’s months until then, after all.

About consent

Consent is paramount—who would know better than romance authors? Don’t send emails to people who didn’t ask for it. AND give them an easy way out. That is not just common courtesy, nor even a legal requirement—it is wise. People who stumble over a fat, big button to get out of unwanted emails are far less likely to mark you as spam. And as we all know that’s something we want to avoid. So let’s talk about how to set up an exit for them.

The unsubscribe button

Seriously, there is nothing new here. If you followed so far, you’ve got that covered.

Put some explanatory text into your emails. INTO ALL OF THEM! Make it easy for people to opt out.

Make the button’s link go to some page on your website (we’ve had that).

Make that link nice/beautiful/funny/sexy—whatever your style is.

Create yet another automation.

This is almost exactly like the first automation we did. Instead of the opt-in link, you now put in the opt-out link, and instead of “Add to group” you choose “Remove from group”. Pick the right group, and save. Done.

So now you’ve got a full setup: People opt in to your calendar emails, get shoved into the right group. If they choose to get out, you oblige.

Send those emails. Finally.

No big deal. All you’ve got to do is to send it to those in your calendar group.

I definitely won’t be composing an email every day. I’d be scared out of my mind that something happened that would keep me from it. So I would set them up in advance, as soon as I know what to put into it. And then I would schedule them so that they’d go out without my doing.

I’m not sure whether I will send them this early. Usually, I send my emails at 10:15 am. Might pick something earlier for those who would like to start their day with that freebie.

The end.

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