Your small handmade business NEEDS email marketing in its life. It’s 4x more effective than social media is and it’s a guaranteed way to stay in touch with your followers. Facebook, Instagram or Twitter can change their algorithm at any time to limit how many people you reach, or even shut down your account without warning.
So you’ve taken a big step by landing here and will take an even bigger step if you take the time to set up your newsletter account right now.
It will take you 10 minutes following these steps (maybe a little more if you want to get fancy with your signup form) and you can start collecting email address today and be ready to send your first newsletter next week.
Let’s get to it!
1 – SIGN UP FOR MAILCHIMP
There are many options when it comes to email marketing services but don’t get hung up on researching them all…that will only make you put off starting your newsletter.
MailChimp is free and really easy to set up. If you decide you don’t like MailChimp and would like to use another service, you can easily export your subscriber list from MailChimp and import it into the email marketing service of your choice.
- Follow this link: https://login.mailchimp.com/signup/
- Enter your email, create a username and a password
- Go to your email, open the message from MailChimp and activate your account
You’ll then fill in some basic information:
- First name & last name
- Name of your business
- Website (you can use the URL of your social media account if you don’t have a website yet)
- Address (this is required to comply with anti-spam laws)
Then you’ll choose whether or not you have existing subscribers. Since you’re reading this article, I’m assuming you don’t have a newsletter list yet and you can select “no”.
You can then connect your newsletter account to your Facebook or Twitter account, or just click CONTINUE if you don’t want to do that just yet.
The next step is optional; you can answer a series of questions, which MailChimp will use to help you find your marketing path. It’s quick to do and who couldn’t use help with marketing? I’d suggest you complete this step, but you can also select “not right now” if you’d prefer not to.
You’ve now completed the set up and can click the checkbox to sign up for MailChimp’s newsletter or simply click the LET’S GO button.
You can complete the rest of the steps to get your business account set up, or simply select “skip this step” or “I’ll do this later” to complete the steps later.
- Connect your store
- Design your first email
- Add your contacts
- Send your first email
Because this article is focused on getting your newsletter set up so you can start collecting email address, and within 10 minutes, you can skip these steps for now.
STEP 2 – CREATE A LANDING PAGE
This is the quickest way to get started. You don’t need a website to start a newsletter and you don’t need to mess around with code to get forms and pop-ups right on your website (we can get into that later…let’s just worry about the basics for now).
Click the “Try out your first landing page” button.
You will then be prompted to enter:
- Landing Page Name – give your page a name so you can identify it
- Segment – there is a dropdown to choose from, which allows you to create a segment (a.k.a a grouping for the people who sign up on this page). For now, my suggestion, to keep things easy and to keep you moving 😉 is to not worry about creating segments. They are handy, but not necessary. IF you sell to two different types of customers, let’s say Men’s Soap and Women’s Soap, you may want to create a segment for each.
Click the BEGIN button and you can then start creating your landing page:
- Choose a template – Select the “Grow your List” template
- Fill in your information – Click on the pencil icon in the top right of a blog (it appears when you hover your mouse over the section) and upload a photo of your logo, add an enticing headline, a description of what you’ll send subscribers.
- Content – you can add extra content such as social media follow buttons, extra images, text, etc. Simply click the “Content” tab on the right side of the page, click on the icon you want to add and then drag and drop it where you want it. My suggestion is to keep this page pretty simple. I’ve tested LOTS of sign up forms and the quicker and clearer you can get your message across, the more signups you’ll get. People don’t want to read a big block of text…keep it fun!
- Design – you can make your landing page on-brand by changing background colors, button colors, fonts, etc. Use “Mobile Styles” to edit how the landing page looks when being viewed on a phone.
STEP 3 – SAVE
Once you’re happy with your form, click the teal “Save & Close” button in the bottom right of your screen. To get your landing page ready for sharing, you’ll have to complete the final two steps on this page to get a blue checkmark next to all tasks:
- Page Title – Name the page
- URL – this is the link you’ll share that will send people to your newsletter signup page. You can let MailChimp generate the URL or you can edit part of it to include your business name or “newslettersignup”.
STEP 4 – PUBLISH
Once you have a checkmark beside each field, you can hit the PUBLISH button at the top of the screen.
Check out your new landing page and be sure to view it on your phone too.
If you need to go back and edit this form, you’ll find it under the “Campaigns” tab. Use the arrow next to “view reports” and select “edit”
STEP 5 – SHARE
Don’t worry, you won’t have a flood of people coming to this page until you start sharing the link.
A few ways to start are:
- Etsy shop – you can share a link in your product descriptions, bio or shop announcement.
- Social media – add the URL to your newsletter signup landing page in a Facebook post or in your Instagram bio.
- Website – if you have a website, add a link in your footer. You can also create forms in MailChimp that you can embed right on your website so people don’t have to leave your site to sign up.
You’ll find more ways to market your newsletter and increase signups in HOW TO START SEND & GROW A SUCCESSFUL NEWSLETTER.
Sign up for my newsletter using the form below to receive 365+ NEWSLETTER IDEAS if you’re wondering what to send.
Hey, I’m Erin 🙂 I write about small business and craft show techniques I’ve learned from being a small business owner for almost 2 decades, selling at dozens of craft shows, and earning a diploma in Visual Communication Design. I hope you find my advice helpful!