Let’s talk about anything bookish!
One of the ways I love to support my favorite blogs is to subscribe to their RSS via email. I ONLY subscribe via email to those blogs I ACTUALLY read and visit regularly. Because of this, I have come across a slight issue that is bothering me: I wish blog email subscriptions had a format.
But before I delve into the issues, I want to talk about the reasons why I prefer email subscriptions.
The reasonS being:
- There are just too many contests/giveaways that require you to follow via [insert follow option here]
- I don’t like to download RSS apps like Bloglovin and scroll through them because, a. see item number 1, and b. I easily get overwhelmed with too many graphics (I already have Instagram for photos)
- I can check my email on my desktop and read the email subject without opening the email
With that said, I follow blogs on Bloglovin when joining contests/giveaways but I hardly check that app at all. The blogs that I really DO follow, I subscribe to them via email.
Here’s the rub. I am persnickety about certain things and I WISH that all bloggers who have email subscription options set-it up in a way that makes it easier to know what a certain post is about. Most especially for those who post daily.
While there are no guidelines as to what your newsletters should be. But I just wish it was formatted this way. By the way, I used to be guilty of this until I formatted it a certain way.
Blog Email Subscription Format
Email Subject Line
Please format your subject line to show your POST TITLE. Please avoid the New Post from [blog name]. This is a slight annoyance for me because it doesn’t show your blog post title. This means I will have to open the email to see your post. It is easier to scroll through my email when the title is on the subject.
This is what my blog subscription looks like in your inbox
Do NOT enable Excerpts only
Please, please, please! If this is a way to drive traffic to your blog, it’s not a good idea. I honestly believe that if someone wants to visit your blog, they will regardless of you having excerpts only showing or the full blog post. I set my RSS/email subscription as full posts and I still get visits.
Also, I do comment on blogs and I will visit your blog even if you enable full posts on your RSS or email setting.
One of the reasons I unsubscribe to blog email subscriptions is the ease of reading your blog via email. For those of you who are offering email subscriptions on your blog, I hope you do have a format to make it easier for your readers.
For those who use newsletter subscription services like Mailchimp, you are able to format your email newsletters to fit your preferences. It’s actually really easy and you can also test the email before it goes out – even if it is set-up as an RSS.
Setting Up Name & Subject
To set-up your From name and subject: use *|RSSITEM:TITLE|* and use your blog name under from name. To personalize the recipient name, use *|FNAME|* and it should show the name the subscriber used when they signed up to your newsletter. This will only be used if you don’t use the RSS function.
Setting Up RSS Body to show Full Post
To set-up your RSS body to show the full posts: use *|RSSITEM:CONTENT_FULL|* and also include the link to read your blog post via browser.
I also include a link to 5 recent posts that have gone out. This helps when you have new subscribers. To add that option use *|RSS:RECENT5|* where 5 is the number of previous articles/posts that I wanted links for. You can change it to fit your preference.
Do you subscribe to your favorite blogs via email? Do you agree with my suggested format?
Do you provide email subscriptions on your blog? Do you have a format? Have you thought about your email subscription format?
Aj @ Read All The Things! says
Interesting! I don’t subscribe to any blogs via email, so I didn’t know about any of this. I know that it’s possible to subscribe to my blog via email, but I have no idea what the emails look like. They’re probably a disaster. Blogger can’t do anything nicely.
Aj @ Read All The Things! recently posted…Review: Ararat – Christopher Golden
I am an email subscriber and I read via the emails, too! LOL I wish it had a format!
Kei @ The Lovely Pages Reviews says
So helpful! I don’t use newsletter mostly because I don’t have a schedule, I just post whenever I have stuff to post, but also I like the way individual emails go out whenever I post something. And yes, I’ve switched from summary to entire context from time to time. I don’t subscribe to blogs that much, it’s easier for me to scroll down bloglovin or visit when I get a new email or just randomly visit a blog I haven’t been to in a while.
Kei @ The Lovely Pages Reviews recently posted…The Sunday Post  Embracing The Reading Slump
Thanks, Kei! The newsletter that I mean here is the RSS form of it. You set it up via a third party but use your RSS instead of creating a post in the newsletter manually. I wouldn’t have time if I had to do that!
These are interesting points. I haven’t really thought much about it, but I do see now how very different the emails I get from blogs are set up. I am trying to get used to bloglovin’ but I feel the same way-its a little overwhelming!
Samantha recently posted…Brooklynaire by Sarina Bowen
Yeah, I can’t deal with Bloglovin even though I offer that option on my blog. I find that emails work for me.
Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction says
This is really interesting because I never gave much thought to the formatting of my email subscriptions (besides the fact that I DO include the full post, not just an excerpt). I use Feedburner for my email subscriptions and I don’t think I can change these formatting options. I wonder if it would be worth switching to something like Mailchimp…. Hmmmm….
Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction recently posted…Great Reasons to Get to Know Your Bookish Friends Better
The good thing is, Feedburner does a good job in formatting the email newsletters. It’s the other ones like Mailchimp where you can actually set-up and personalize your options that really need a format! LOL
Terri LeBlanc says
MailChimp is a good option and fairly easy to set up. MailerLite is another option and I started using it instead of MailChimp. It doesn’t have as many formatting options as MailChimp for RSS feeds but works in a similar fashion.
And if I recall, you can change SOME of the Feedburner settings, but for the life of me, I can’t recall HOW to do that. I know that when I moved from Feedburner to MailChimp (ages ago) I was able to export my subscribers and import them. 🙂
Terri LeBlanc recently posted…Introducing Heather Blanton, author | In the Spotlight Interview
I’ve heard of MailerLite, too! I had been using MailChimp before which is why I went with it for this blog.