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68 Comments

Post Your Newsletter - I'll Suggest a Way To Monetize.

I'm here to creatively think of ways for your newsletter to make money.
If you have 100 subscribers, or 1,000 or 10,000, we all want some extra pocket money to pay for a new sofa, or a trip to Disney World next year.

Reply with a link to your newsletter, and how many subs you have. I'll think of a new way you can make money.

To celebrate releasing Make Bank Bundle a bundle of 3 Newsletter Monetization courses from 3 newsletter creators, I'm here giving creative, weird, fun ideas to make your readers happy and make you some bank. ::cash:: ::moola::

the Make Bank Bundle includes

  1. Profitable Newsletters*
  2. Monetize Your Newsletter
  3. Better Letters

You'll get 3 courses and way way more.

  1. 2

    https://curiousfounders.com/
    Case studies on people who built profitable bizness on the web in a fun way

    1. 3

      How many subscribers?

      It seems you're building startups, so you'd ideally monetize by getting customers, right? At first it might make sense to focus on building and getting the subscribers as customers, but perhaps there are a few infoproducts you can produce.

      • Consider producing some ebooks on the markets your researching as you're doing 12 startups in 12 months.
      • Consider market research among your peers that only you can do, in your age group. I've seen a lot of Gen Z marketing consultants move into products after a few years of consulting for companies and doing market research.
      • And you could probably try out donations, buymeacoffee .com but check out putting info products behind coffeelinks. But do please check out the Terms and conditions to see if age is an issue.
      1. 1

        Thanks, Andrew for the tips.
        Will work on it

  2. 2

    I recently started nameea.com, it has affordable brandable domain names for sale. The newsletter portion is a listing of available domains, maybe with ideas for apps to start with the available name.

    Still not committed to the newsletter idea for the ideas for an app. But very committed to sharing great domain names. Just launched 2 weeks ago, and no subscribers yet. Your thoughts?

    1. 0

      A few growth ideas because the more subs you get the more names you sell. right?

      • This will cost you money but may go big. Buy domain names. While I've seen plenty of sites selling domain names. I've never seen any buying them. Buy expiring domains for double the cost. You could try it out with a google form or incorporate it into your site. Have a submit page or form. Perhaps even a voting system?

      • Connect with any and all idea newsletters, and get a section each week in their newsletter that offers unique brandable domains in the vein of that week's trend. And vice versa. Offer them a spot or link to their work in your newsletter when you offer a brandable name. Here's 3 trends you can use this for... and link to their newsletter's edition.

      • Trends .vc @dru_riley

      • Opportunities .so @jakobgreenfeld

      • trends .co @stephsmith

      • One key thing to growth is get people who want to share your newsletter with their audience. The answer: Interviews. Interview people who changed their name. Changed their domain during a pivot. Interview people who claim their name/domain caused them to fail (ask on IH, for people). Interview logo designers. Interview branding experts like Phil Pallen at PhilPallen .co

      Interviews don't have to be scheduled calls. you can do it all in google docs and email. I did that with my newsletter and it was wonderful. Pigeon for Gmail helps.

  3. 2

    First1000.co
    Case studies on how companies got their first 1000 customers.
    18k subs

    1. 1

      You have a great referral system. Get featured for referring 5 people. Perhaps monetize in a similar format. Feature 5 short text mentions every week for $10, or $20. Fill in any unsold with referral-earned folks. Dense Discovery charges $99 for classified ads and is sold out months in advance.

      You have a ton of great qualitative data. Put all the what works and what doesn't work into a searchable sortable, filterable google sheet. Sell that compiled data for $49. Yes it's free week to week but to offer it all in one package saves folks time.
      And enrich the data with categorization, add math (comparing different stats), add in some of your own ideas into ranking/rating and you'd have a wonderful database.

      You're inevitably getting more out of writing the case studies than any readers. This happened to me when I was running a newsletter and reading 100 articles a week. I spotted trends and could offer insights/context to companies that I didn't have when I started. I imagine a $49 1 hour call via a calendly would do pretty well, especially early stage startups who just need a gut check on what works and what doesn't. Or even growth teams seeking 10 more ideas.

    1. 0

      How many subscribers do you have?

        1. 1

          This might take about 40 hours of work in all. I've done it before when I made CreatorScape. It'll get you both growth and money if you decide to do monetize it.

          Create a list of all the companies in each space. I see you cover a variety of future niches. aging, fashion web 3.0. You can choose one and do it in a weekend or figure out all of the. I'd suggest picking one, maybe longevity, to start with.

          But that's not all. a map or a list of companies in the space, anyone can do that. What you do next is going to set you on the path of monetization. 1. You can do this by hand or use crunch base. Find all the investors of those individual companies. What you're looking to do is list each and every investor, and make sure you can see which ones invest in multiple companies.

          This is basic work when someone is raising money for their startup. you're saving them this time and energy. And you have a newsletter so you can do it in 3 to 4 steps, in semi public. meaning you can announce to your newsletter "I made this map. Did I miss anyone?" a week later after feedback add companies. then "I've found all the investors.. did. I miss anyone?" and after feedback add the investors.

          So you got a list of companies, a list of investors in those companies.

          You should 1st email them all and say "hey i put this list together and I cover the industry... here's my newsletter". I found that in my world of influencer marketing, investors in the space were happy to pay $50 a year in a premium newsletter to get more info, more access, deep knowledge. Having them subscribe now sets you up for success of a paid offering later.

          And then.... you ask them.. "do you want companies reaching out to you to pitch you?" <=== basically.. you want deal flow?

          and if they say yes, include what they want, how they want it and put it in a doc. Sell it to startups.

          Every week you could interview an investor in the space. publish the info. and say "we publish 50% of the interview in this newsletter for free, buy the report and get 100% of the interviews from all time."

          so a few ideas

          • Make a Map
          • Find Investors
          • Do Interviews
          • Create a report
          1. 2

            That's a really interesting idea. Appreciate it. Thank you very much, Andrew.

    1. 1

      I wish I had something to tell you but I can't seem to find out what you're sending. Are you sending a weekly newsletter? or is it the blog content but I see the blog was last updated in May.

      Definitely you should have some archives or something pointing to past editions, unless I'm totally blanking on where you have a link.

      I see "start", "blog" "resources"

      1. 1

        Hey Andrew,
        Thanks for your feedback! Seems like I have to make some changes 🙏
        In short – it's a monthly newsletter, where I share resources, behind the scenes, and tips around making videos for non-videographers.

        The blog is just another part of the website where I express thoughts additionally.

        1. 1

          Got an edition I can see? happy to take a look.
          Any particular reason you're sending monthly? it's not nearly enough editions a year to be on top of mind. 12 vs 52.

          1. 1

            @AndrewKamphey, thats a good point! I actually added a link in the navigation for all past issues. I'm not the most consistent with sending out. Focusing on quality content, but your point makes me realise that I should have a good strategy for consistency. Any advice on that?

            1. 2

              The only strategy I have for consistency is making it so you don't have to push the rock up the hill every single time. Use some google alerts an curate a small section at least so you get momentum and a starting energy every single week. I curated all the time so I just open my gmail, and get 100 articles to read. easy peasy to start, start reading.

  4. 2

    Nice Andrew.

    Changed the subject and overall looking since we last talked.

    Here it goes:

    unicornsfeed.com

    1. 3
      • Sell front end audits. 15 minute reviews done by loom. see Six Figure Audits

      • Charge for coworking. It's a 1 hour call, 5 minutes to discuss what they are working on and you suggest what to do, then 50 minutes later review their work.

      • You always put the newsletter together from your kitchen? Offer 1 links to an amazon affiliated account that shows of a product to make your kitchen better. I know this is "off-topic" from front end, but you're the one who brought up kitchen :) So here's your novel/new idea.

      1. 1

        super interesting the audits actually.

        thank you so much Andrew.

  5. 2

    https://sendfox.com/thetestingacademy
    Software Testing related stuff video, resourcesand courses

    1. 1

      It looks like you're focusing on getting people started, beginners in the field. Which is awesome. And a lot of information is on YouTube, Facebook, in free places. Great that you're doing a course, and can charge for that.

      It's so hard to charge people looking for their first job. I do something similar, I give lots of free content so that someone starting can make their first dollar.

      I'd look beyond the beginners for monetization.

      • Create an enterprise course
      • Add Coaching, and Career Advice for those looking for a promotion.
      • You can create a job board specifically for people moving up. That might net better paid job ads since it's hard to find senior people or intermediates.
  6. 2

    https://startups.nocodeletters.com/

    A curated newsletter of twitter threads related to Startups

    1. 3

      Create a list of the 100 must follow startup twitter writers. People who are great at representing the startup mentality in written form on twitter. Put it on Gumroad with more in depth bio's. Interview as many of them as you can (5 questions google docs work well here) put that in the gumroad product.

      • I see on your gumroad you have one product you sell. Make it better and sell it for $30. Here's how you can make your 100+ tools list better. For each product, make a 5 minute loom video of you using it. If you've never used it before, signup for a free trial and record the first 5 minutes of you setting it up, using it for the first time. This might sound silly but honestly I'd rather watch a 5 minute video than actually sign up for tools myself. if I don't like the tool or can't find a use for it they have my info and I get bombarded with onboarding emails. But if you sign up and show me what it's like, I'm more likely to find the product I want to use and can use right away.

      • Create a classifieds ads section after each tweet you include. Short (less than 240 characters and a link, no images). Write them yourself to start with. Promote products or tools that speak to the heart of what the tweet you featured.
        For example this one ended with "talk to users" so feature 5 products that make it easier to find users, talk to users and keep notes for internal use. ( loom/calendly/syften/intercom... etc)

      1. 2

        The list sounds interesting to start with. Thanks @AndrewKamphey

    1. 1

      I'd defo be looking to monetize with companies posting jobs!

    2. 0
      • Feature at least one thing to do with an extra day. Find a killer Airbnb and feature it (get that affiliate setup). Other travel sites, or local deals sites should/could have affiliate. Have fun and find extremely interesting things to feature that even if someone can't go now, they will bookmark it later.

      • Charge for more personalized curation. Charge a one time fee for someone to submit their linkedin or cv to you, and you'll find them 10 jobs. I'm assuming because you read all the jobs and have some leg up on a person reading through for the first time. I'm not sure if this is really gonna be a great money maker, but could be a good outlet for those who already want to support you, to support you. $10 or $20 to save an hour is great for some folks.

      • Perhaps you can do shoutout trades or spitch sponsorships to other sites that celebrate alternative job searches: remoteok, key Values by @lynnetye ,

  7. 2

    Hi, Andrew. I bet you know what I am going to post 😂

    https://newsletter.microns.io

    19 subscribers

    I interested not only in monitization but also in growing organically it. All my subscribers came from Twitter and IH.

    1. 1

      For growth

      • Create an epic list of everywhere someone can post their company/sideproject/app to sell it. MicroAcquire, Sideprojectors, Microns. Include every site, newsletter, directory, marketplace, etc.

      • Every week interview 1 person who has bought a business/app within the past 6 months. Ask them 5 questions about the process and what they are doing now. Great way for them to promote to some technical audience, right? Broad questions here work: How did you find it? How did you end up buying it? Why did you buy it? What are you doing now with it? What are your plans in the future? Do you want to sell it again? Follow up with them in 6 months.

      1. 1

        Wow. That's a piece of awesome advice. Let me prepare for this.

      2. 0

        p.s. I'll be your first interview if you want to do it.

        1. 1

          Yes, it would be great! I will let you know.

  8. 2

    Great Idea!

    I have a niche newsletter on drones. Here's the latest issue - https://propwash.nihalmohan.com/issues/propwash-6-the-biggest-drone-conglomerate-you-didn-t-know-about-685014

    Thanks for your time!

    1. 2

      I'd suggest Amazon Affiliates if your subscribers regularly buy drones and drone accessories.

      If you don't know if they buy them, create a quarterly survey asking at least "how much did you spend in the last month on drones and drone accessories?" Publish it as "State of Drones" a good example is the yearly State of Switch Chris puts out at Switch Weekly. It ends up being his best new subscriber channel too.

      I'd think about interviewing CxOs at drone companies. Even if it's only 5 questions by a google doc, it could turn into a great deep industry report if you compile 20 to 30 interviews together. Something you can sell. "I asked 50 CEOs of drone companies...." is a powerful headline. A "dronescape" ala lumascape could turn into some nice consulting gigs. It did for me when I made CreatorScape.

      1. 1

        Thanks, Andrew!

        I really love the interview prompt idea. Going to give it a try soon!

  9. 2

    Hello Andrew,

    Thanks for your time.

    My newsletter contain information about 2 industries - Technology, Defense & Aerospace.

    This is an example of my post from which I create a newsletter. https://dsarkar.medium.com/the-importance-and-benefits-of-human-machine-collaboration-in-the-next-decade-283573f7859c

    Total number of subscribers as of now is 50.

    Best Regards,
    Debo

    1. 0

      Do you have a link to your newsletter?

      1. 1

        I am sorry, I don't. I send newsletters as an email attachment.

        So the link to the publication that I just shared with you will be emailed to subscribers as an attachment.

        1. 0

          I meant landing page. somewhere people sign up for the newsletter.

  10. 2

    Listen Up IH

    Insights + Ideas + Inspiration for Indie Hackers, profiling successful Indie Hackers every week.

    Subs count - 750

    1. 3
      • Affiliate for Audible. Recommend every week a very on the nose audiobook that won't waste reader's time. And provide a link to your audible page to get a free audible book for free. it pays $15 for each free trial sign up.

      • Sell a database of Monetization tactics. Each week , if you you share the specific tactics, then put them all together from all weeks. You're saving time for the reader who doesn't have to go back and copy/paste them all into a doc themselves.

      • Sell a database of Growth tactics. Each week you share these, so put them in a google doc and sell it on gumroad. or put a stripe url with a payment and give access to the doc for each buyer.

      • If you don't have many that have monetization and growth, then put together an epic list of lessons learned. Categorize them and sell it as a deeper report. Check out 5,274 business ideas that Starter Story has. Yes it took a few years, but I bet you could put together now a list of 100 lessons learned.

      1. 2

        The audible idea is unique, hadn't thought of that.

        The database ideas I had vaguely thought of, but you've put them in quite concrete terms.

        Thank you 🙏

        I will work on them

        1. 1

          And I think design, and categorization can go a long way. Check out these examples

  11. 1

    Hey Andrew,

    I am late to this post and you probably might not even see this. Still, here's my newsletter:

    https://domainscout.substack.com
    10 awesome domain names and ideas delivered. Almost every day.

    I have about 50 subs now. Although subscriber growth has hit a plateau in recent weeks.

    1. 1

      I got some growth tactics ideas for you and within those some of them are good to monetize too. But if you want to focus on growth, then do that, and then charge later.

      For Growth:

      • Create an epic guide to buying/selling domains. Pick either or do both. 50 tips on Buying Domains for Cheaper, 50 Tips for Selling Domains. 50 Ways to save money when you're buying domains. (buy bulk, buy direct, buy expiring) You probably can come up with 50 yourself. Or look to the next idea to get others to give you tips.

      • Interview people. You could interview one person a week who has sold a domain. What might be fun too is to interview both parties, the buyer and the seller some weeks. this podcast episode features both myself and the buyer of my newsletter that I sold him. I just don't see this often where you get both perspective at once.

      • I think the act of reaching out to 100 to 200 people who have bought domains, in forums, chat groups, direct emails, you'll gain a lot of them as subscribers too. And be able to get shares of your newsletter when you print it.

      • Consider a written interview, by google docs to be the method you can do this asyncronously and easy for your interviewees. Ask 5 questions, the 5 W's usually do well. Starter Story has a great playbook for this.

      And one thing I noticed, you haven't had an edition in a few weeks. Might be why you're not growing. Consistency is key.

  12. 1

    Hey Andrew!

    I write 10+1 Things sharing 11 interesting, offbeat stories curated by me.

    https://rishikesh.substack.com/p/african-apocalypse-build-a-great-life

    I started 2 months back and currently standing at 70 subs.

    What are some ways to monetize when I cross 100 subs?

    Would love to hear some ways for organic growth as well !

    Thanks!

    1. 1

      For growth, I'd put yourself out there more. It's called 10+1 things, but its' really Rishikesh, Rishikesh, Rishikesh. Be bold. Put yourself on the front. Put a face on the newsletter. Make it fully yours. Own it. Check out the best newsletters on letterlist, they all have a face!

      And take a think about who your newsletter is for. That's going to unlock a ton of growth, because your new subscribers probably don't know you exist yet. So to get to them, you have to know them first. Your newsletter as it stands uses a lot of "I" and if you both fully become one and the same with your newsletter while simultaneously discovering who you are writing for, you'll figure out what to do to get new subscribers.

      Some tactics to help: Create a PDF (in a google doc) with 10+1 of your very favorite things you've ever curated. Enrich them with more references, tweets, historize them: let readers know how they came to be. Place them on pedestals and idolize them. Write 1,000 words on each one. You'd then have 11,000 words on the greatest 10 +1 things you've ever witnessed online. And you'd have a wonderful little ebook to put in first time subscriber's inboxes. Something to get right away.

      Consider going daily or weekdaily. Meaning you offer 11 links each week and it's a lot. You pour your heart an soul for 9 hours a week... but not everyone will click on everything. If i got 6 emails from you each week I'd be more inclined to click on one. send 2 items an email monday through friday and send 1 digest with a bonus item on Sundays as you usually do. Something to consider since the only extra work would be to copy/paste 2 items into a substack edition and queue up 5 of them for the week. Note: I do 5 emails a week for coffeehouse

      And then once you're making even a few dollars a week, you can pay it forward to artists. Via, the image you include each week, I think you could do something more with this. Instead of offering it to artists to be featured, try paying them. Could be like a reverse advertising spot. It keeps your art in there and offers support to creators/artists. Say something like "apply for a spot" instead of a contact me for a spot. Since you're paying you can accept applications. I know it sounds like a little, but paying even $5 or $10 per issue could be an interesting thing for artists to share. Maybe it was their first digital dollars made from their art.

      1. 1

        Thanks a lot Andrew! I'm still trying to process everything you suggested! Thanks a lot for taking the time to write this!
        You made my day!

    1. 1

      Hey Joe, So cutting edge dev specific newsletters seem to be a hard little nut to crack in terms of monetization. So much of web dev is pay it forward. Free github repos, free how to articles, tutorials, video walkthroughs. Your target audience is one that is adverse to paying for technical knowledge.

      At first I thought this way. But I think there's a few avenues you can go that push on the boundaries a bit. Paid community might take too long to get fully off the ground but is something that is needed. I might angle it towards getting high level questions answered faster, than searching. Because there's more and more free info and knowledge, it's faster to ask a group who are all equally motivated to help. But this type of group is hard to get started and might not be worth the time or effort to monetize. But would be fully worth the effort to keep it free and open.

      Seems you're already getting sponsors, which is great. One more wrinkle you can add to your newsletter to increase total revenue is shoutouts or classified ads.

      shoutouts - text only. (max 100 to 200 characters)
      classified - short text with one embedded link. (no more than a tweet maybe less)

      You can price these super cheap so that anyone can buy them. To advertise a github repo, to show off a project and get traffic, to try to sell a project to a dev who can actually take it to another level.

      The point of making them cheap is to make them easier to support you. The people buying are going to be your subscribers, They will want to support you, but don't think of themselves as advertisers.

      I noticed you test code. (from your personal website) I think this could be a huge business for you. or small side project. Check out the writing here on SEO Audits. I've done something similar with reviewing newsletters. It's been a great thing to be able to offer and do for cash.

      I know for sure I could use a skilled developer to review my code on a new ruby on rails project. Or on an old one. Lots of apps that can help facilitate this like codementor.io but I think if you'd like to keep it personal it's great to advertise in you r own newsletter these things. Not put it on a site, but just sell through gumroad and use loom. And you already offer coaching in your website but I think a productized version of this could easily be advertised in your newsletter, by you.

      1. 1

        Classified ads, priced super cheap, sounds really interesting! I love the idea of getting anyone to show off their work for a few bucks.

        Advertising for my own services is also a great idea. I'll make sure to fill in the blanks with those in the future.

        Thanks for the awesome ideas - keep up the great work!

  13. 1

    This one might be tricky: https://thehistoryoftheweb.com/. List is pretty good, ~3,500 subs, but it's a geeky, mostly research-driven project. I've explored advertising a bit but not sure where to go for that.

    1. 1

      So this might cost around 50 to 100 bucks but its worth it. Run a list of your subscribers through Towerdata's email intelligence. You dont need to get every data point. But I would make sure to get demo and house hold income at least.

      Use that aggregated data to sell pretty broad geeky stuff.

      Dense discovery is selling out and their audience is seemingly broad. Simple classifieds might be the trick for you too.

      If you havent thought of it, I would interview at least 5 interesting people for each year of the web. Your journey through that might be of interest to readers. And perhaps unlocking longer interviews would make it easy for folks to want to buy a membership if you offer one.

      Consider also posters for sale. Might be fun to roll out updates for that too!

      1. 1

        These are some really fantastic ideas, I really appreciate it! Going to get to work on them too.

        Question: when you say “use that aggregated data to sell”, do you mean in materials I show to potential advertisers? Or are you referring to something else?

  14. 1

    https://optimisetrends.substack.com/
    Newsletter on Marketing optimisation and A/B testing

    1. 1

      How many subscribers?

      I checked out your 1st or 2nd edition. Without much to go on here's a few ideas.

      • A/B Test Results: Either as a database or an info product, I'm sure some percent of readers want to see a ton of test side by side. Even if this info is qualitative, or anecdotal, it might be great to see a ton of it side by side.

      • Conversion Audits. Gaps .com writes about six figure SEO audits. I bet you could use that playbook for Conversion audits. https://gaps.com/six-figure-audits/

  15. 1

    My weekly newsletter on building a successful creative business is at http://bcc.craftsmancreative.co

    Thanks!

    1. 1

      How many subscribers Daren?
      From a quick look it looks like you're monetized in a lot of ways. Info products on gumroad, benchmark app, community, courses. I'll try to think of something you don't do already it might just be twisting or tweaking something you already do.

      Like you have done so many course launches. You could put together a checklist for under $10, and offer a consultation call for $49 for anyone launching a course on udemy/kajabi/gumroad. could bring you deal flow too.

      1. 1

        Thanks Andrew! Yeah, the online courses have become it's own business. Pretty fun year!

        I just crossed 1100 subs, but growth is sloooooow. The monetization is all in place for new subscribers to become aware of products & stuff, but I do like your idea for a lower priced product / lead magnet.

    1. 1

      first off, great deal sourcing guide. I've forwarded it to a few people that need a list like that.

      Because of your experience with Due Dilio, I'd look at putting together $19 to $99 Due Diligence guides. Along with checklists. That should broaden the type of ads you can run for yourself. And possibly be a great tripwire for fb/goog ads. Basically you could advertise a guide for $50 and then a by product of that is they sign up for the newsletter. I saw you tried twitter ads, they don't convert well to sign ups directly.

      • Consultation Calls: I'd highly suggest making them paid. It helps keep flakes out.
      • Branded Section: I think some sections that are branded around an idea and sponsored quarterly make sense. I know GrowthMentor is spending money on ads (I get their ads all the time) and might be a good fit. Feature a different growth mentor each week in a section. could sell 1 ad spot for a quarter at 10x the price of a single ad. And this might fit in more with your content and helpfulness.
  16. 1

    I think it's great you are offering this support.
    A lot of people are handling higher amount of traffic but not many conversions.
    Although your courses might be great for the beginner marketer, I would highly suggest to personalize the emails in a way that will make the user want to convert.

    One way to do it is by using personalization like Twik. It will identify the user anonymously on your site based on fingerprint (not cookie - which means more reliable), and based on pre-funnel and behavioral data will deliver the best converting options for this user.

    You will only have to provide the options for the tool and it will do the work. Personalized emails definitely works better then general emails sent to all.

    1. 1

      Well newsletters aren't like direct emails. I, for one, get a little awkward if a newsletter addresses me by name and targets me too much. I enjoy as a subscriber being one of many.

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