If you’re wondering whether or not you should start a newsletter to promote your online teaching business, the answer is a massive yes.
Email has the power to totally transform your language teaching business. It can build your reputation as an online teacher, drive more sales than any other channel and turn vaguely interested followers into raving fans.
But before I get to all the reasons you should start an email list for your teaching business, I wanna take you back to the 90s with a tale that proves newsletters aren’t just a fad.
Way back when I was little, my mum volunteered at our local Air Ambulance service, where she was tasked with raising awareness (and funds) for the charity.
Instead of knocking on doors to ask for donations, she decided to start a newsletter to send updates, event invitations and sponsorship opportunities to local businesses and households.
Now, this was way before MailChimp was a thing. So, in true old-school style, she’d design, write, print and mail out the one-pager once per quarter. (Can you imagine!?)
Sounds like so much effort to us modern marketers, but it paid off. Big time. She grew the community from a handful of regular donors to over 500 members, who donated monthly.
She even got sponsors to pay for the printing and postage of the newsletter, so it cost the charity nothing. All because she created well-targeted, timely updates that people wanted to receive.
Of course, newsletters have come a LONG way since then (thank god for email), but the principle is still the same: newsletters work.
Now, let me explain why.
1. You have a direct link to your people
There’s one major advantage newsletters have over all other marketing channels: the potential students you’re sending it to chose to receive it.
I know, I know. Instagram users had to hit the follow button to stay in your world, and people on LinkedIn decided to connect with you. The difference is that these are low-commitment actions that can be done (and undone) with the click of a button.
Plus, whether or not your followers actually see your posts is, at least in part, at the discretion of a pesky bit of tech few of us understand… the algorithm.
While it’s true people can unsubscribe from your email list at any time, the steps they had to go through to receive your updates (handing over their name and email address) are a lot more involved than simply tapping ‘follow’.
And that means they’re already more engaged.
2. You can strengthen audience relationships
When you have a direct line into the inboxes of your biggest fans, you have the chance to build a deeper, more personal connection with them.
Although you’ll send the same email to a bunch of different people, it feels more personal to the reader. Not only because you can address people by name (yup, email platforms are super smart and personalised), but you can craft a message that feels like a one-on-one conversation.
One of my clients receives weekly replies to an automated email that asks every new subscriber what skills they’re struggling to learn (related to his niche, obvs). People actually thank him for taking an interest before sharing a detailed account of where they’re at.
This has allowed him to create the kind of relationship he’d never get on social media, where you just can’t personalise your marketing in the same way.
Seriously. It’s magic.
3. You’ll protect your business from tech glitches
In case you didn’t already know, you don’t own your audience on any social media platform.
It doesn’t matter if you’ve amassed millions of followers or dedicated years to growing an engaged community. Your account, your content and your audience are owned by the channel you’re posting on.
That means they have complete control over what happens to your account.
Only last year, Instagram disabled thousands of legitimate creators’ accounts after mistaking them for bots. Although many people were able to regain access to their accounts, it caused business owners to lose hundreds, if not thousands of followers overnight.
That’s why it’s a great idea to start an email newsletter as soon as possible. It’s like an insurance that protects you from algorithm updates or scary technical glitches like these that you can’t do anything about.
#4 You’ll earn trust and sell more
What does a direct line to your most engaged audience mean?
Sales. A shed load more of them than social media can ever create.
The latest stats show that email has a return on investment of 4200%. In other words, for every $1 you spend, you can expect to see an average return of $42.
Why? It’s simple. When you send regular high-value emails your subscribers enjoy reading, you gain their attention, interest and trust.
You already know they have a problem you’re qualified to solve.
So, when you come to sell it, you’re speaking to an engaged, warm audience who just need to be told what, when and how to buy from you.
Ready to start an email newsletter for your teaching business?
GOOD! Because you do. As my OG marketer mum showed us, creating consistent, quality content your people want to receive can lead to hugely impactful results.
Unlike my mum’s fancy pants designs, you don’t need to make a beautiful bulletin. In fact, email newsletters are proven to work best when you keep things simple.
I know it can feel intimidating at the start, especially if you’re new to the online teaching business world with a to-do list longer than your arm. But it’s easier than it sounds — especially when you follow these steps to getting started.
Sign up for weekly updates here, and keep an eye out for next week’s post for ideas on what you should send your subs.