As you may know, I'm wildly passionate that every serious author build his or her personal reader email list. I even recently spoke on this topic at the South Florida Mystery Writers of America meeting. Your newsletter the only marketing YOU control and easlily the most powerful selling tool for authors. It can be tough to get it perfect though, and one of the biggest problems is finding the best way to setup and send those newsletters to your readers.
For the first time, and possibly for a limited time (as far as ME making everything happen goes) I'm offering the perfect solution!
See if this sounds famiiar...
AUTHORS: Hosting my site and subscribing to MailChimp (etc) is EXPENSIVE. The more reader emails I gather, the more it costs me. It's like being penalized for growing. AND sometimes they try and STOP me from adding new emails at all!! What can I do?
If you host on GoDaddy or other popular hosts, you'll find they'll only let you send X-number of emails a day. This is what makes using services like MailChimp (etc) necessary. Unfortunately, those services might ALSO actively block you from adding emails gained through newsletter builder programs. How are you supposed to grow effectively with everything working against you?
What if you could send unlimited emails for free from your own server?
What I do, (and what every serious, in-it-for-the-long-haul author should do) is host on their own private VPS server. Then, you can grow your list and season your IP until you're able to send thousands of emails in a day with no bad side effects.
Huh? What's an IP? And what do I season it with? Salt and pepper?
When email is sent, it is sent from an IP (internet protocol) address assigned to the website sending it. GoDaddy, et all use ONE IP for potentially thousands of websites, so they can’t let any one site send a ton of email for fear they’ll be blocked as a spammer by ISPs like AOL, Yahoo, Outlook, etc. If that IP is blocked then NONE of the users on it would be able to end their emails successfully. If you have your own IP, then you only need to worry about you.
But you just said I’ll be blocked as a spammer if I do that…
Not if you season your IP. This means you start small, sending batches of emails that won’t throw up red flags. Over time, the ISPs start to trust you, and then you can send as many as you like without being blocked. I send out over 300k a DAY from the IP to which I’ve assigned AuthorsXP.
You can see the AuthorsXP sender score below - 97!
So I can do all this for FREE??
Yes and no… As usual, doing things right requires some investment, but you'll save a lot of money over time (and grow faster and more effectively).
All the possible parts you might need:
- Transfer of your current WordPress or Joomla site to a VPS/dedicated IP
- Redesign of your site AS a WordPress or Joomla site if it isn’t already
- Installation of email program (AYCMailing or MailPoet)
- Setup of newsletter template you can use going forward to make sending newsletters easy
- Setup of signup box on your site where readers can sign up to your list
- Seasoning your IP by sending newsletters to smaller groups regularly and growing slowly
How am I supposed to do all that and how much is that going to cost?
I've owned a web development firm for 20+ years, so I can move your website to its own IP and install a program like MailPoet or AYCMailing with which you can run your newsletters. There would be a one-time transfer fee (usually around $100) and an installation fee for installing the mailing program (usually around $150, including newsletter template). Both of these things could be things you could do yourself if you're techy.
If you don’t already have a WordPress or Joomla-based site, we’d have to upgrade you to one of those (prices would vary based on the site size/complexity). Then you’d pay more for hosting your web site, but that would INCLUDE unlimited mailing. I’d also share with you tricks to be sure your IP is seasoned correctly and avoid issues. If you ever did get a little overzealous, I’d help you get back in business too.
All this can be done for as little as $50 a month (webhosting and email services) with no fear of prices going up every time you add a few emails and no problem adding emails in the first place. The hosting would also be faster than hosts that stuff thousand of people on the same IP, and more secure. There would be backup as well, so if you were ever hacked, everything could be restored instantly.
Once all that is done, you can sit back and GROW without having to worry about your newsletter again!