Mailchimp can stop a lot of people in their tracks. It can be really hard to work out how all the elements link together. Here’s an overview of how it works. Feel free to ask any questions in the comments and I’ll do my very best to answer!
1. – SIGN UP: sign up for Mailchimp (just go the free option for now)
2. – MAKE A LIST: create a ‘LIST’ called Newsletter Subscribers (if you are collecting email addresses for a newsletter) or Blog Subscribers (if you are creating an email feed (RSS) for your blog (so readers get it in their inbox!) Add your own email address as your first list subscriber. You’re on your way, now!
3. – CREATE AN OPT IN BOX: add a signup box to your blog’s sidebar – with the text ‘sign up for my newsletter’ or ‘get my blog in your inbox’ (or similar!) Mailchimp has code you can embed for each list or you can use the Mailchimp plugin for WordPress. Encourage people to opt in by offering them awesome content or incentives.
4. – MAGIC HAPPENS: when someone uses that signup box – their email address is added to the list! Ta-dah!
5. – SEND SOMETHING : send something to that list! Always send what you promised (i.e. a newsletter or a blog post – not both – just what people signed up for!) Mailchimp has templates for all kinds of things and you can just customise them to suit you!
6. – If you are stuck on how to send your blog out every time you update – and you added the ‘get my blog in your inbox’ opt in box on your blog – watch this video. It will show you how to do that. It’s super easy!