Plenty of us have a ‘Subscribe by Email’ option on our blogs for readers to subscribe to get the latest posts to their inbox. Google’s Feedburner is what I originally used and it works great, but doesn’t always look that pretty.
I wanted my emails to be branded the same as my blog and also be able to control how many went out each week. I personally don’t like being flooded with emails and would prefer one a week. Enter MailChimp! I’ve used MailChimp for email marketing, but just recently took advantage of their RSS-driven campaigns. It basically works the same way as Feedburner and sends your latest posts straight to your reader’s inboxes, but also allows you to style your email beautifully and decide when and how often you want to send posts. And like Feedburner, it won’t email your readers unless there’s new content!
To create your own RSS-driven campaign, you’ll first need an account with MailChimp and a list! If you don’t have any subscribers yet, you can select one of their options to drop into your sidebar to easily collect subscriber emails. They’re automatically added to your list, so it’s super simple!
Then for the actual campaign! Click on the ‘Create Campaign’ drop down menu and select ‘RSS-Driven Campaign’
Go through and drop in the proper information. Your blog’s feed, or if you don’t know it, simply type in your URL and MailChimp can typically find it for you! You’ll then be prompted to select when and how often you want to send emails. Then you’ll select which list it’s going to, name your campaign and then select a template. I had created some basic templates before hand that had my social media links and logo, but if you haven’t done that yet, you can do it here.
Then design the actual email! This part can be tricky and takes some playing around, but you can live test things to see how they are working. I used this little cheat sheet that MailChimp has online to create my template! Once you’re all set, just set it to go and you can sit back and relax!
Extra tip! For self-hosted WordPress blogs, I use the plugin ‘Featured Images in RSS w/ Size and Position’ by Rob Marlbrough to pull ‘Featured Images’ into my RSS campaign.
By Blair of The Fox and She