An internet marketer recently announced (in the typical hypey, over-dramatic fashion of internet marketers) that she “shockingly” wasn’t going to do an ezine anymore.
Big deal. What’s so all-fired earth-shattering about that?
If something isn’t working for you, by all means, stop wasting the time and energy.
And if you want to start charging for something that you previously gave away for free, just do it.
No need to contrive a bunch of artifice as an excuse.
Of course, there’s always the possibility that maybe a thing that isn’t working could work if it were just done a different way.
Here’s what I know:
Ezines can be done well, or they can be done not so well.
They can be done simply, or they can be done in way that makes them difficult, complicated, burdensome and unsustainable.
Having put out an ezine every Monday for, what, four or five years now, I can tell you that if done right, they can absolutely be a fantastic pipeline-builder and additional marketing channel for your business.
I would also tell you (and the internet marketer) that just because the feedback or participation isn’t readily apparent, that doesn’t mean it’s not working for you.
I sometimes get frustrated with people’s timidity in our industry. But I have to remind myself that sometimes new thinking and ideas put forth are so completely different from the status quo, they often don’t know what to make of it at first.
That doesn’t mean they aren’t paying attention. Because I can see very clearly, not just from my Aweber stats and reports, but also through all the times I hear that someone found me or connected with me via the ezine (or my blog, for that matter), that they are opening and reading and saving and forwarding it.
I wouldn’t abandon the idea of doing an ezine just because some internet marketer dropped hers and now declares them dead for everyone.
The key here is to really know your stuff as well as your target market — because if you don’t, you’re not going to have much to say that is going to be of interest and value to them.
Ezines can be a great tool for growing the know-like-trust factor and nurturing relationships along. But for an ezine to be successful, there has to be some commitment on your part.
You have to write about things your audience will find useful and interesting and you need to have a regular and consistent publishing schedule.
Another thing I find really important is authenticity.
So many ezines are following the most obvious 1-2-3 steps. They get so caught up in following the internet marketer stock-in-trade formula (talk about your kids/pets, launch into self-promotion, feature article, resource) they end up losing their own voice.
Hey, I’m sure your kids are great (just as I think mine is), but I’m really not interested in hearing about them week after freaking week.
It’s just so obviously disingenuous and manipulative.
Then again, maybe I’ve just got more of a nose for the bullshit factor than most people, LOL. (Anyone else feel me on this?).
Anyway, you want to keep it short and sweet so that a) it doesn’t become a drag, and b) it’s an easy read.
There’s no point in doing an ezine (or anything for that matter) if you eventually hate doing it or it’s so long that it’s too much work for your audience to pay attention to.
If you can remember who your audience is (i.e., for God’s sake, stop writing to your colleagues and focus on your clients and what they’re interested in) and keep it real so they can really connect with you as a person (and not simply as some internet marketer trying to capture the money of the masses), an ezine can be a wickedly wonderful way to grow your list and nurture relationships.
Of course, as with anything, an ezine isn’t the only way to do that.
You don’t have to do an ezine at all. Your business isn’t going take a nosedive just because you decide not to do an ezine.
In fact, I would advise against it if you aren’t up the commitment outlined above. Then again, you never know unless you try it out.
Bottom-line, there are good reasons for not doing an ezine. Ditching the idea just because it didn’t work for someone else isn’t one of them.