As home-sitting, coffee-swilling, glasses and pajama-wearing writer types, we have to be super serious about our marketing efforts or our businesses will cease to be. Mostly this is because the people that we see everyday---our pets, children and spouses---make horrible clients.
This compels writers embrace all sorts of different ways to market their business both aggressively and passively. Some examples include:
- Guest posting on blogs targeted to their niche
- Cold calling
- Cold emailing
- SEOing their portfolio
- Social Networking
- Creating a newsletter
Now, I’m personally on-board with all of the above mentioned ideas except for one—the dreaded newsletter.
Like other ‘lancers, I briefly considered having a newsletter. Before I sunk any time into the endeavor, I decided to field test the idea. I sent out a survey to all my current and former clients as well as some leads and asked if they’d be interested in a newsletter that talked about financial industry stuff and gave some writing tips.
Guess what? Most of them didn’t respond to my survey.
You might not find this to be a definitive answer to the question I was asking, but I did. If they aren’t going to respond to my one-time survey (which takes all of two-seconds), what makes me think they are going to read my monthly or quarterly newsletter, which takes several minutes?
Further supporting my line of reasoning (something I try to do as often as possible) I thought about my own stance on the newsletters of other professionals. I don't want a newsletter from that one graphic artist whose website I stopped by, or that cool but pricey CPA I was considering hiring, or that one gym I thought I might join. I do not want to read any of their newsletters, all drenched in the cloying scent of, PICK ME.
Those of you who already have a newsletter are probably rolling your eyes at my stupidity and short-sightedness and if your newsletter is actually working, then hells-to-the-yeah you should be. If your newsletter brings in dollars—dollars that are equal to or exceed the amount you would be paid if you were working on a client project instead of your newsletter each month—then you rock.
But remember, it’s all about the bottom line. Don’t fall so in love with your newsletter, your idea, or your effort that you forget it’s about gaining money—not losing time.