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So you started a blog. Now what?

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So you took the plunge and started a blog. Congratulations! (If you haven’t yet started a blog, what are you waiting for? Check out our blog-starting guide now!)

Anyway. Now that that obvious self-plug is out of the way, on to the actual subject of today’s post: email!

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Email? What does email have to do with blogging?

What does email have to do with blogging? Everything! Your email list of your subscribers is your secret weapon to blogging success. These are the people who have read your blog, and enjoyed it so much that they subscribed. They’ve proven to you that they enjoy your content and want more. They are the ones who are the most likely to read your new posts, and click on your affiliate links, and buy your products.

So how do I go about starting an email list?

First you need to set up your blog email. As I mentioned in my “start a blog” post (there’s that self-plug again), when you sign up for hosting with Bluehost, you get a free email address @YourDomainName.com. You can access your email from your Bluehost dashboard, or go to Bluehost.com, click login, and choose “webmail login.”

The first time you log in to your Bluehost email, you will be prompted to choose a webmail client: Horde, Roundcube, or SquirrelMail. It doesn’t really make a difference which one you choose; they are just different interfaces for viewing your email. I personally like Roundcube the best. I found that Horde wasn’t updating my inbox automatically, so that I never knew if I was getting new emails unless I manually refreshed, and SquirrelMail’s interface is extremely basic and unappealing. But again, it doesn’t really matter which one you choose, and you can switch at any time without affecting anything.

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Yay! I have my blog email set up! Now how do I get subscribers and email them?

To do that, you need an email marketing provider. There are a number of those that seem to be popular in the blogosphere: ConstantContact, MailChimp, and MailerLite. With any of these email marketing services, you can do the following:

Create and embed sign-up forms for people to subscribe
Create pop-ups on your site that prompt people to subscribe
Collect all your subscribers’ email addresses in a list
Create a blog newsletter to email to your entire subscription list
Automatically send out an email to subscribers anytime your blog is updated
Automatically send a welcome email, or series of welcome emails, to new subscribers
Easily design custom emails
Track email opens and clicks to see which emails are most effective

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Back up, I’m confused. What’s the difference between Roundcube and ConstantContact?

They are two completely different things! Roundcube is an interface to view your inbox and send individual emails. ConstantContact is an email marketing service that allows you to collect email addresses, automate email sequences, and send mass emails to your subscribers.

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Got it. So how can I get started with this email marketing thing?

ConstantContact has a 60-day, risk-free free trial – no credit card required! Click here to check it out and sign up. When your 60 days are up, you can either upgrade to a paid account, or switch to a different email marketing service. (MailChimp and MailerLite both have free options for up to a certain number of subscribers).

When creating your account, you will be asked to provide your physical address. This is necessary for the CAN-SPAM act (I have no idea what that stands for, but I do know that whatever it is, it was called that in order to get to the CAN-SPAM acronym…) Your email marketing provider will automatically add your address to the footer of all your emails. If you don’t want to provide your home address, here are some other options:
Your business address
A paid PO Box
A virtual office
Your representative’s address: if you have an agent, VA (virtual assistant), accountant, lawyer, etc, you can use their address. Just be sure to ask them first 🙂

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And that’s it! Email your subscribers to keep in touch (but not too often that it feels spammy.)

All this blogging stuff making your head spin? Then why not check out some yummy recipes instead!

Korean Beef Bowl
Easy Shepherd’s Pie
Homemade Mozzarella Sticks
Garlic Knots from Scratch
Double Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies
Homemade Cinnamon Buns

Don’t forget to follow Bites ‘N Pieces on twitter @bitesnpiecesco, facebook facebook.com/bitesnpiecesco and Pinterest pinterest.com/bitesnpiecesdotco

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This Post Has 24 Comments

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  2. .

    Hello there I am so delighted I found your blog, I really found you by accident, while I was searching on Bing for something else, Anyhow I am here now
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  3. Tiffany

    I was just looking into this! Thank you so much for all the great information.

  4. Bindu Thomas

    This is such a great information! I am wanting to grow my email marketing. I will give this a try.

  5. This is good and helpful information for me. I am wanting to grow my email marketing. Awesome job on creating one place where people can find helpful information. I will give ConstantContact a try.

  6. Denisha

    Email really is such an important part of engaging your audience. I plan to do a much better job of this in 2019.

  7. Rosey

    I have heard email is huge. When I started blogging another blogger encouraged me to get busy with the e-mail thing and I didn’t listen. She did (to herself). Her blog is much bigger than mine and she attributes it in large part to email.

  8. heather devaughn

    My business partner just let me know that I am in charge of marketing for our blog. This is timely info, thank you!

  9. So very true, I think an email marketing list is one of the most important out there! Very good tips! Also, haven’t heard of Constant Contact but hey I’ll give it a go right!

  10. Nate

    Email marketing should always be the bread and butter of any blog or person who is looking to build their business online!

  11. GiGi

    SO SO SO important! I started blogging 7 years ago and email marketing has always been THE THING!!! Collect those emails people!!

  12. So, I’ve got my blog started. Ive got my email list set up to auto email my subscribers of my new blog posts as they come out.

    But here’s my question: those email addresses I have collected with the “New Blog Post” subscription, am I allowed to use those addresses for other things? Such as, asking poll questions, or sending out my latest coupon finds, etc.

    Or can I only email them new blog posts since thats what they signed up for?

    1. Bee - Bites 'N Pieces

      Great question! In general, when someone subscribes to an email list, I think it is accepted to email them other things besides for just your latest blog post. If someone only entered their email address in order to leave a comment, then you cannot add them to your email list and start emailing them.

      BUT if you are in the Eurozone, or your subscriber is in the Eurozone, then you fall under the GDPR, which is the EU’s updated privacy law. Under GDPR, you can only contact ppl in the specific way they signed up for. So if they signed up just for new blog posts, you can only send them new blog posts. (The GDPR is a whole complicated topic onto itself, and I am not a lawyer, so please do not take this as legal advice!)

      I hope I answered your question. If I can be of further help, let me know!

  13. Jessica

    This is really great information. I started my blog but I haven’t had the opportunity to look into subscriptions opportunities yet! Good to know!

    1. Bee - Bites 'N Pieces

      I’m so glad you found it helpful, Jessica!

  14. Tina

    Yay! I always love reading things that help me with getting started on this. thank you!

    1. Bee - Bites 'N Pieces

      Hey Tina! I’m so glad you found it helpful. Good luck getting started!

  15. Sharon Lopez

    Thank you for the information about email marketing. I am yet to start growing my email list. I am still learning how to do it and this post is a good starting point.

    1. Bee - Bites 'N Pieces

      I’m glad you found it helpful, Sharon!

  16. Deborah

    Yes – started blogging and learning in leaps and bounds. One thing? Always so much more to learn. I am working on my subscriber list bit by bit.

    1. Bee - Bites 'N Pieces

      Yes, there is always so much more to learn. Everyone feels overwhelmed at first, but you’ll get there!

  17. Michele

    Thanks for the info def need to start my subscriber list just haven’t done it because it’s confusing! Thanks for the tips!

    1. Bee - Bites 'N Pieces

      I’m glad you found this helpful! Yes, everything is confusing in the beginning, but you’ll get there! Feel free to reach out if you have any specific questions.

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