The Great Newsletter Migration

The Great Newsletter Migration banner
By Dustin Tigner
Announcement
Too Long; Didn't Read

I’m changing my newsletter provider. Please resubscribe here.

Every so often, I think to myself, “How can I make my life harder?” And—as evident by the title of this article—the answer to that question is I need to change my newsletter provider to . . . myself.

Yay for that DIY upbringing.

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If you’re interested in why I am making this change, read on!

The 4 benefits of running my own newsletter

A More Personal Experience

I don’t want to send marketing material to my subscribers. I feel like we’re marketed to all day, every day. We’re blasted with images and video and call-to-action buttons to buy, buy, buy!

That’s not the experience I wish to cultivate for you.

By hosting my own newsletter, I have complete freedom in its design. And I’ve designed it to look very much like a normal email, one that invites you to reply should you ever want to let me know your thoughts.

Easier and Faster

When I started my last newsletter, I put a lot of effort into creating custom graphics for every email. My goal was to build a unique and exclusive experience, to provide a sort of value for being a member.

But this content didn’t persist. I invested hours of my time in creating something that 99.99% of my readers would never see.

My new philosophy is to invest my time into outcomes that persist. It’s better to write an article that’s accessible to everyone, forever, than an email. Emails are thus used to let you know the new content exists. No fanfare required.

Independence

There’s something to be said for being entirely independent and in control of how you operate.

Take this website as an example. Every letter and pixel exists exactly how I want it to exist. It’s cached and hosted in a Content Delivery Network (CDN) free of charge. Should anything affect this setup, I can swap it to any of a dozen other trusted and free hosts for static content.

For email, if Amazon’s SES stops working well, I only need to adjust my sender information. If, on the other hand, MailerLite, Mailchimp, ActiveCampaign, etc., start to have deliverability issues (a constant battle), changing to another provider requires changing everything.

There’s also the persistent risk of cancel culture. As a creator—and as an imperfect human—there’s a good chance I’ll upset someone in the decades I hope to be writing. Should the mobs come for me, my independence makes it more difficult for them to ruin my life (as is often their goal).

Building for the Future

I’m a Futurist—per the CliftonStrengths talent assessment—and often think about the possible long-term outcomes of various decisions. It’s essential to build a foundation that you can grow upon.

We live in a constant flux of change. Email providers are no exception. They compete and grow and decide they want to do more than deliver email (Mailchimp). Their prices increase, justified by “better” features. Inflation and the economy also affect the cost viability of the most basic form of communication from the dawn of the Internet.

To send 5,000 emails a month on MailerLite will cost $360 a year, more if you want to provide your own design. For me to send the same amount of emails—with complete control of the design—will cost $6 a year.


Want to stay in the loop?

I’m committed to building my platform where I can write and share my thoughts and creations with you. There are also other email-exclusive perks, such as early access to stories and the potential of joining my beta reader list.

Click here to subscribe.

See you around! :)