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The secret to newsletter success with Steph Smith of The Hustle

Yaro Bagriy
Yaro Bagriy

About this episode: In this episode, we have Steph Smith, who's a part of one of the most successful newsletters The Hustle and Trends, which is read by millions of subscribers. We'll talk about some interesting topics such as the secret to creating a successful newsletter and how The Hustle went about pricing their subscription newsletter and community called Trends.

Episode Sponsor: EmailOctopus
"EmailOctopus has the flexibility to design great-looking newsletters that stand out. The best part is it's free until 2,500 subscribers."
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Newsletter Story of the Week: https://www.axios.com/insider-inc-buys-majority-stake-morning-brew-e6ec0673-4354-4bc7-9feb-e0b149508c9a.html

Show Notes & Insights:

  • A newsletter business has very high margins while also providing emense scaling potential.
  • Email is probably the only channel where you control while also having direct connection with your audience.
  • Many newsletter creators misunderstand the difference between a niche audience and a niche value proposition.
  • Your newsletter just needs to be 1% better on one specific thing compared to the other newsletters out there. But it has to be something people care about.
  • Newsletters can trade on quality, depth of research, quality of information, trustworthiness, humor, entertainment value, costs, etc.
  • Clarity is the most important part about running a newsletter.
  • Many creators are starting newsletters because they think it's easy and they it'll just happen. That's certainly not the case. It's never been easier to start a newsletter but that doesn't make it easy to create a successful newsletter.
  • If you want to start a newsletter, ask yourself this. Are you going to be providing any unique value or solving a unique problem for people?
  • Since it's never been easier to start a newsletter, the percentage of high quality newsletters is much lower now.
  • There's a ceiling on how much someone will pay to be a sponsor of your newsletter even if it does 5x or 10x. At some point, it's just too much.
  • Now that there's too much information, people are willing to pay for something that's high quality.
  • Try beta testing different subscription price points to really understand how much someone is willing to pay for what you're offering.
  • Many creators are underpricing their products because they're not used to charging for it.
  • The price of your newsletter or membership should be based on what you audiences wallet says. Don't overthink it too much internally.

Newsletter + Guest Info:

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Podcast

Yaro Bagriy

Podcast host & community manager


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