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Building a local newsletter with Ryan Sneddon of Naptown Scoop

Yaro Bagriy
Yaro Bagriy

About this episode: Local newsletters are becoming the hottest rage in the newsletter world. This week I had the opportunity to discuss how to build a local newsletter with a local newsletter expert, Ryan Sneddon. In this episode, we discuss the opportunity of local newsletters, how they’re drastically different from the standard newsletter, how to build a successful local newsletter, and so much more.

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What is DMARC?
The last concept of our technical deliverability series is DMARC (Domain Based Message Authentication Reporting and Conformance) Yes that's a mouthful I know, but let’s make it easier for you to understand.

Show Notes & Insights:

  • A local newsletter covers all news and events for a city since the last time the newsletter was sent.
  • Local newsletters can have verifying levels of detail. You could do a 30,000 foot view on the city and cover the big news or you could do a very detailed local newsletter and cover some of the hidden gems in the city.
  • Your audience will be more engaged with a very detailed local newsletter focusing on community versus a more general local newsletter.
  • Community focused local newsletters are the best way to build a local newsletter. Advertisers will also be much more likely to sponsor.
  • Local businesses will be knocking at your door if you run a local newsletter. It’s one of the best things that’s happened to local main-street businesses.
  • The biggest downside currently with local newsletters and sponsorships is that many local businesses still don’t understand the benefits of newsletters sponsorship. As newsletters move more into the mainstream, these businesses will convert over.
  • Local newsletters sponsorships are priced the same way a normal newsletter would. Open rates, subscriber counts, etc.
  • The biggest downside of a local newsletter is the maximum ceiling you could see. For example, a city with a 10k population is going to have a subscriber cap at 10k. For bigger cities it’s a little different, since there could be people outside of that city who’d be interested in subscribing.
  • Smaller cities have the benefit of being easier to manage and understand what’s going on but the downside is the subscriber cap.
  • Sponsoring local events to grow your newsletter much not have the ROI compared to localized digital ads.
  • Referral programs for local newsletters are key to growth. Subscribers will share with their community.
  • Local newsletter send frequency is highly dependent on the size of the city. Larger cities can support a daily newsletter while medium sized cities would realistically only be able to do 2-3 times a week. Mega cities could be broken down into smaller districts and still be sent daily. Do the research and understand how much interesting local news is really out there.
  • If you’re unsure how often to send your newsletter, one strategy is to just ask your subscribers. Implement newer frequencies accordingly.

Newsletter + Guest Info:


Yaro Bagriy

Podcast host & community manager

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