#99 — 8 steps to strengthen your newsletter strategy

Welcome to the latest roundup of the biggest stories about independent publishing.

This week we've got tips for email newsletter strategy, two great podcast episodes and a rundown of how one publisher gained an increase of almost 300% in new subscribers.

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💯 Top picks

8 steps to strengthen your newsletter strategy

Consistency, calls to action and skimmable headlines! This week’s top read is a list of steps that you can use to improve your email strategy straight away.

💸 Business models

The Membership Puzzle Project are designing a definitive guide to membership models

As The Membership Puzzle Project comes to a close, the team are partnering with The Lenfest Institute for Journalism and the Google News Initiative to produce a comprehensive guide for member-driven publishers.If you’d like to contribute, you can ask questions that you’d like to know the answers to, or submit findings from your own newsroom.

“Not only can membership save journalism, but will do so by helping it evolve”: Why publishers are looking beyond subscriptions

“Reader revenue has freed us from the shackles of others we can’t see or who don’t care.”

Apple News hits 125 million monthly active users

“During the pandemic crisis, active users of Apple’s news platform hit an all-time high.”

The UK fast-tracked scrapping VAT on e-publications

“Plans to scrap VAT on e-books and e-newspapers have been significantly fast-tracked in a boost to readers and publishers during the coronavirus outbreak, the Chancellor announced today.”

Tribune Publishing sees a 293% increase in digital subscriptions during the pandemic: How they achieved it and what’s next

“Tribune Publishing signed up 334,000 digital-only subscribers in 2019. This was a 34% increase compared to the previous year. Subscription revenue grew about 60% during the same period, according to its CMO Mark Campbell”

✍️ Modern journalism

Are journalists on autopilot when they’re determining which sources (or what information) to trust?

“Who and what journalists trust determines a substantial amount of what makes it through the journalistic filter to audience — what leads they pursue, who they talk to, how they frame a story. But given the importance of trust, we know relatively little about why journalists trust certain sources or information.”

“Growing a web publishing business from a small starter loan and your own profits "toughens you” in ways that are different than venture-backed media according to Digital Trends CEO Ian Bell.“

Journalists’ union seeks tech-giants tax to ‘rescue’ industry

“To mark World Press Freedom Day on Sunday, the NUJ released a wide-ranging rescue plan for the media industry which it said should be central to government formation talks.”

[Podcast] The Atlantic International Editor Prashant Rao on bringing the publication to a global audience

The Media Voices podcast catches up with International Editor Prashant Rao about taking The Atlantic’s voice to an international audience, the importance of diversity in writing stories for that audience, and their recent surge in subscriptions.

👩‍💻 Technology

UK ad market to contract by £4.2bn this year

“Ten years of continuous ad market growth peaked in 2019 at £25.36bn, but the COVID-19 outbreak will wipe more than £4bn from the total for the current year, according to the latest Advertising Association/WARC Expenditure Report.”

🤷 WTF?

Virtual rate cut forces Nintendo gamers into riskier assets

The most popular game during the coronavirus era mimics global banks by making cuts to interest rates within the game.

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