Which newsletter service do you use?
How long have you been using this service?
Since I was preparing for my first novel’s release in 2006 (so about 6 years)
Are you a convert from another service and, if so, why?
Nope. I changed from individually emailing my friends to using a double-opt-in service.
How did you choose it (ie: what criteria were important to you?)
Ease of use was hugely important, as well as flexibility and affordability.
What do you like best about it? The worst?
I love that I only need to pay when I use it. In my case, I started out sending monthly Book Buddy newsletters, but decided that was taking too much from my writing time so I switched to quarterly. Then illness took me away from writing for several years, so I just didn’t send anything out. Now I’m resuming an occasional newsletter, and everything is in place and waiting.
The one thing that has been a challenge is that with the double-opt-in method, sometimes people sign up, but don’t ever see the confirmation email. . so they are stuck in a limbo of half-way signed up, but not yet getting the newsletter.
What, if anything, is the cost?
There is a small cost per email sent. Cost for purchasing those credits varies depending on if you bulk order a lot at once.
About Your Newsletters
How often do you send a newsletter (or how many have you sent so far)?
Originally it was each month. Then quarterly. Then nothing. Now I’m back to quarterly (I hope). 🙂
What is the purpose of your newsletter?
To share a devotional thought, encourage the readers, share updates on my writing projects and occasionally some behind-the-scenes stuff, and share suggestions for those who are prayer supporters…and then to pray for the Book Buddies.
How easy (or difficult!) do you find creating your newsletters? Why?
The templates make it technically easy. Honing down what I think readers would find of value is the difficult part. I tend to procrastinate when I know it’s time to send out a newsletter. I’d rather use my limited writing time for writing projects. Yet the feedback always encourages me that people appreciate the updates.
What do you always try to include in each letter?
Devotion, news, prayer requests, a link to my latest book, and a prayer.
About Your Subscription Base
How do your subscribers find your email sign up?
On my website, sharonhinck.com – right hand column of first page.
Do you offer an incentive for new subscribers?
Not currently. However when there is a special offer or contest or event, my Book Buddy subscribers are the first to hear about it – and sometimes I do a special contest or fun gift JUST for the Book Buddies.
Are your subscribers the same people who are your Facebook fans, or who follow your blog or Twitter?
Not completely. I try to use each of the platforms, because some of my readers don’t do social networks, but like getting an email newsletter from me occasionally. Some only do Twitter, some only do Facebook, some only follow my blog.
Sharon writes “stories for the hero in all of us,” about ordinary people experiencing God’s grace in unexpected ways. Known for their authenticity, emotional range, and spiritual depth, her novels include contemporary fiction such as The Secret Life of Becky Miller or Stepping into Sunlight and the groundbreaking Sword of Lyric fantasy series which includes the newly released The Restorer’s Son–Expanded Edition. She’s been a Christy finalist and won three Carol awards.
Sharon’s undergrad degree is in education, and she earned an M.A. in Communication. When she isn’t wrestling with words, Sharon enjoys speaking to conferences, retreats, and church groups. She loves interacting with visitors at sharonhinck.com.
Interested in seeing reviews of other newsletter services? They’re all here in the newsletter category. Valerie Comer uses and enjoys YMLP. You can sign up for her newsletter here.
Patti Hill says
What Sharon won’t say about her newsletter is that it’s written to the heart of the reader, and it’s full of “gifts,” like a devotion and a prayer. Reading her newsletter is more than a marketing tool. It’s a relationship builder.
That’s true, Patti. Hers is very personal that way.
Connie Sung Moyle says
Hi Sharon: We love hearing about how our customers use VerticalResponse to stay in touch with their networks. Thanks for all your support!
Thanks for coming by, Connie!