I launched my Women Inspiring Women Weekly newsletter on Sunday, November 24, 2019. I’ve subsequently produced and emailed the newsletter to subscribers every Sunday since. That’s a total of 18 newsletters, and I’ll be sending out number 19 in a few short days. At launch, I sent it to a list of 60 women. Today there are nearly 200. There has been only one unsubscribe.
Believe it or not, the idea came to me four days before launch and I just decided to go with it. I’m a former journalist, and author and I love to write. I consume a lot of news and read quite a bit, so I figured that it might be cool to share some of the great content I come across on any given week, geared specifically to professional women – with a bit of my own commentary sprinkled within.
It has turned into something many women look forward to. They send me emails about it and tell me how much certain stories helped them, or that it’s something they look forward to every week. They post comments when I share on LinkedIn, or credit and tag me when they re-post something they first saw in the newsletter. They mention it if I see them in person, and encourage me to keep it coming. The feedback I receive from readers on a weekly basis has become an unexpected motivator. It’s no longer just for me, and hasn’t been for many, many weeks.
I’ve learned a few things along this nearly 19-week journey, some of which I already knew but that have become welcome reminders. Here they are:
I missed having an owned channel for content. Sure I use social media, but we’re all pawns in the algorithm game, and I can’t be sure that I’m actually reaching people, even those who want to be reached. I was an avid blogger from 2008-2012, and I missed it.
When I feel like I don’t have it to give, I give even more. Some of the best issues have been those I was a little concerned about. Maybe I didn’t start it soon enough or had a very long week and was feeling exhausted. But I pushed through and did the work, and people liked it.
Sharing my personal and professional stories can be therapeutic for others. I’ve known this, but what I didn’t know is how effective it could be in this format. I share stories all the time, giving examples and sharing anecdotes from my career and some of the issues I’ve faced over lunch, in meetings, small group settings, as part of presentations, etc. I’m also always ready to lift up another with words of inspiration and advice when needed. This is translating through the newsletter.
People want to be exposed to new ideas and opinions, and even a bit of salacious humor. I thoroughly enjoy sharing content that sometimes borders on the professional but may be a tad bit salacious, like the woes of a 50-year-old sugar daddy. I’ve learned not to second-guess it and go with my gut.If it gives me a chuckle, chances are it’s likely true for my readers.
I get more satisfaction sharing content this way than on social media platforms. There’s no waiting for comments or likes, or placing value on that kind of success, or lack thereof. I just schedule for the designated time to distribute and know for certain that *something* I’ve included will resonate. It’s also aggregated in a way that gives me a body of my own, much like my blog did, as opposed to posts scattered all over that can’t be readily viewed in one setting.
People are busy and will come back when they’re ready. Now this, I already knew…but it underscores the fact that because subscribers have opted-in, there’s a permission level there that I’ve come to appreciate. I’ve heard that a few women always go back to the issues they may have missed.
And finally…I have more to say about a number of topics, beyond the focus of my newsletter, and I need another owned channel. Now this one might seem a little crazy, but producing newsletters for 18 weeks straight made me realize that I need to blog again. And I started a new one three days ago, mostly because I have a real bias for action and I didn’t want to overthink it out of existence before it could even become a thing. Check out AngelaConnors.blog.
And if you’re interested in this newsletter of which I speak? Consider signing up at womeninspiringwomenweekly.com.