As creative professionals, we greatly value community. Whether it’s the open source community around WordPress or the community that is our friends, colleagues, and clients, real people with real lives are a great source of joy to us.
To celebrate and focus these communities, we began shipping a monthly email newsletter in January 2014.
Creating an Email Newsletter
As a small business eager to grow the community around us, we worked to craft a digital newsletter that would help us do that. We wanted the focus to be on people – our community – and not on us. The newsletter wasn’t to be a sales vehicle. It was to be a way to bring people together.
The first newsletter went out to a small yet deliberately curated list of 109 of our colleagues, friends, and clients. We only sent the newsletter to those who we felt had a similar appreciation for community.
Our Simple Rough Recipe
In our newsletter, we highlight the awesome work our clients, colleagues, vendors and even competitors are doing around the world in an effort to connect them all together.
A typical issue highlights a couple of our clients and the work they are doing. We also introduce one of our colleagues or friends, sharing details of their work. We wrap up each issue with a few interesting articles, videos or photo galleries.
Over the last three years, we have been thrilled to have received a very positive response to our newsletter. With an open rate well above 40%, our newsletter hits open rates above 50% at least six times a year. With each issue, we receive a small handful of personal replies commenting on the newsletter.
More than the impressive numbers, what really delights us is seeing how connections are made through our newsletter. The chief executive of one non-profit read about another non-profit featured in our newsletter and connected with and engage with that other charity to work together. The founder of a successful law firm read about another of our charity clients and then made a donation to support its work. Those are just two examples: we have so many little stories about the value our readers draw from our efforts to connect.
To get our newsletter in your inbox once a month, sign up. We think you’ll be glad you did.