You deserve your own audience!

If you are following this newsfeed, you already know that audience building has become a new strategic focus for Blogody. Today, I am announcing the delivery of the very first membership feature: subscriptions. Start growing your own audience with Blogody today!

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Just imagine you spent many hours writing an original, well researched article. You are exhausted but really proud of the final result. You show it to your best friends and they give you a pat on the back. You hit the Publish button — and: silence. Nothing happens. You hectically send links to your favorite social platforms. You get many likes but not many impressions. You ask yourself: what went wrong?

Sounds familiar? If not, I bet you have build up an authentic audience already. Not getting immediate validation can be daunting. Of course, when you publish a new article, you know that it can take a couple of month before it is properly indexed in search engines. It happened to me many times that an article gained popularity only after a longer time period.

That’s why I think social media has become so widely adopted: The built in gratification system is immediate, you don’t need to wait months before you see any reactions. Here is a question for you: Are those reactions really valuable to you, are your followers genuinely interested in reading your articles? Even if you can say yes to these questions, there is so much more potential in growing and fostering your own audience.

That’s what the new strategic focus of Blogody is all about: Making it simple to grow and own your audience by collecting subscriptions from people who really want to read your articles. That’s the only audience you need in order to lift your publications to the next level.

I can assure you that the feedback you’ll get from authentic readers and critics will not only spur your motivation for writing, it will also positively impact both your writing skills and future reach.

Growing your audience with Blogody

Blogody’s core strengths are: minimalism (design, zero setup, deep integration), uncompromising content ownership (you can publish on your own domain and all content rights remain with you) and open standards (you can easily take and re-use your content wherever you like). Today, I am adding audience ownership, which means you get full control over all subscribers you collect with Blogody.

How can Blogody make growing your own audience simple? First and foremost, all your publications come with a new Subscribe button, so your readers can sign-up with their email. Theme integration, sign-up process, email sending and collecting subscribers in the member area is all taken care of by Blogody. No need to sign-up with another provider and no additional email sending costs: Everything is included and you can start right away.

If you are using a custom domain, subscribers get sign-up confirmations directly linked to your custom domain. This is really important for building up your own brand and reputation. Here are some screenshots to demonstrate the subscription flow.

Subscribing to your blog

Starting today, all Blogody blogs are automatically equipped with a Subscribe button in the upper right corner of the main and all post pages. When a user presses the button, the following input form is shown:

Once the email is entered and the Notify button pressed, a sing-up email is sent to the given email address.

Receiving a confirmation email

An explicit consent from the user is needed, before you can welcome a new reader in your members collection. A typical email that your users receive in their inbox looks similar to:

This opt-in method follows best practices and ensures that subscribing to your site is an active decision. Your user needs to click this button in order to freely sign-up to your site. There is also a direct link at the bottom of every mail which can be used instead of clicking the button.

When you inspect the subscription link you'll see that it refers to your own blog domain.

Confirmation and Redirect

Once a user confirms the subscription by clicking on the subscribe button in the email, an immediate redirect to you blog page is initiated.

That way users know if the subscription process was successful and they come full circle to your site.

Note that a user can always unsubscribe by pressing a link that is sent with every email. Now, it's your turn to feed your users with a newsletter or other email marketing material.

Managing members in Blogody

All users who successfully subscribed to your site show up in the Blogody’s membership dashboard:

This is the place where you can manage your members. The options are still limited at the moment, but you can change the name, email and subscription status.

Creators, Influencers and Businesses

The audience building strategy is just one aspect of a larger effort to sharpen the value proposition for all Blogody user groups: Creators, Influencers and Businesses. This is also reflected in the new pricing plans.

While I continue the successful practice of prioritizing new developments based on direct user feedback, I will think much harder about the added value it brings to each user profile, recognizing the different needs that each user has.

What’s next…

With the new membership functionality in Blogody, you can enjoy collecting subscribers today. You still need to do the hard part of producing high quality content, but if you do so, you will start seeing new subscribers dripping in from readers that really like reading your articles.

Obviously, the integration of new audience building tools into Blogody has just started. One of the next milestone will be a newsletter sending feature that I’ll expect to land early next year. The journey has just begun…

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