Ideas for a Dash newsletter

fernando

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This is a long overdue project that I have been meaning to start many times but it was never the perfect time.

We have a couple hundred emails from the subscription form in the website (at the bottom, I know!). Evan also used to maintain a list of emails to which he updated on the tech changes. It was mostly people who were running Dash related services and I'm not sure if we should include them. Besides that, I'm sure that if we push it in social media we will get many more subscriptions.

Regarding the content, several options I can think of now:

1- Links to all news posted at dash.org/news with a short excerpt of each one. This can be automated right away with mailchimp. It is not super specific and maybe too much for some people, but we'd have something now and we can tune it later. @tungfa posts several items per week already, so we'd have content. I think this could work well on a weekly basis. If you read that newsletter you'd have most of the important stuff someone not very involved in the community would want to know (usually no internal stuff on dash.org/news).

2- Well crafted custom written newsletter updating on what is going on with Dash. This requires work, but we could probably do a monthly newsletter like this one with no trouble. Shorter time scope could be problematic on slow news periods. There are always internal things from the community, but for those not too involved that would not be interesting.

3- 1+2, but that maybe too much for most recipients?

We could also give the subscribers all kind of options about their desired periodicity and that kind of stuff, but I would try to keep it super simple in the beginning. We can always complicate later.

Any other ideas?
 

TheDashGuy

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+1 to this idea.

You can easily get 20% click through rates with most emails if not much higher depending on the quality of your list and content.

I say we should be sending out emails 2 times a month minimum. But thats just me.

@ericsammons @Solarminer @tungfa @kot @AndyDark @lisacheng @GreyGhost @hobbskevin thoughts?

I say we have an "outline" of whats been going on for the past 6+ months just to recap the big milestones.
 
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fernando

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Obviously I'm not the average internet user, but the first thing I do with automated newsletters is to unsubscribe.

I think a monthly, hand-crafted newsletter with links to interesting content is much more acceptable.
You are right, I think most of us unsubscribe a lot or just ignore, we need to be extra careful. My only concern with monthly is that if it gets lost in the noise of the inbox then it is too long until next communication. Also, if something important happens you miss it, but I guess that in those cases it is ok to send an extra issue :)

PS: when I saw you had posted I though you were gonna call me names for mentioning Mailchimp instead of something like Mailman... before you say it now, I just want to make it easy and low maintenance, but I agree it is suboptimal :)
 

cstevens

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I created an automated newspapering system for exactly this purpose--a content typesetting system that puts together content fast with a polished look.

Here's a video screencasting the system's look and feel.

Mailchimp doesn't permit this kind of advanced XHTML so the work proper needs to be hosted on a seaperate server. Still, a MailChimp cover may be designed linking the paper. Hit me up if you want to use it.
 

tungfa

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my concern is that we have so much to read already , announcemnts, budgets, proposals, news, this and that, thread here and there + all that on multiple pages, chats , social media,.... .....
maybe it is just me , but to summary all that in to another post/email is
first of all, a lot of work
second, even more reading material
(it is hard to catch up already as is)

news are really well covered as of all the outlets, + dashpaymagazine is doing a great job producing even more ,
new or 'interesting' threads' on DF .....
i think you are ether a lurker and get your news and updates on social media (that is well covered) or you are a 'pro' (addicted) and you follow the forum and know what is up

i am honestly not sure if this is really needed
would maybe be nice to hear some opinions from newcomers and see how they get along (updates, news, interesting discussions)
as the above obviously is the opinion of somebody who is knee deep in dash content day in day out ;)
 
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fernando

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my concern is that we have so much to read already , announcemnts, budgets, proposals, news, this and that, thread here and there + all that on multiple pages, chats , social media,.... .....
maybe it is just me , but to summary all that in to another post/email is
first of all, a lot of work
second, even more reading material
(it is hard to catch up already as is)

news are really well covered as of all the outlets, + dashpaymagazine is doing a great job producing even more ,
new or 'interesting' threads' on DF .....
i think you are ether a lurker and get your news and updates on social media (that is well covered) or you are a 'pro' (addicted) and you follow the forum and know what is up

i am honestly not sure if this is really needed
would maybe be nice to hear some opinions from newcomers and see how they get along (updates, news, interesting discussions)
as the above obviously is the opinion of somebody who is knee deep in dash content day in day out ;)
I think it all starts with the audience... and you are not obviously it because it won't tell you anything you don't already know.

There are projects I follow but I'm not involved with that I would like to get a well curated update from time to time. Yeah, from some of them I get the via twitter or any other social media platform, but email still has the highest conversion rates for most companies. And nobody is forced to receive it, it is only those who subscribe. I really think we should have this, my doubts are about format, content, audience and that kind of stuff.
 

tungfa

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I think it all starts with the audience... and you are not obviously it because it won't tell you anything you don't already know.

There are projects I follow but I'm not involved with that I would like to get a well curated update from time to time. Yeah, from some of them I get the via twitter or any other social media platform, but email still has the highest conversion rates for most companies. And nobody is forced to receive it, it is only those who subscribe. I really think we should have this, my doubts are about format, content, audience and that kind of stuff.
balu started something like that some time ago
(2-3 posts) and it was actually nice to get it presented in a nice format
;):rolleyes:
 
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fernando

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balu started something like that some time ago
(2-3 posts) and it was actually nice to get it presented in a nice format
;):rolleyes:
Yes, it was a forum post, but we could always send that in an email. However, if my memory serves me well, it was more for internal consumption of the community. I think the newsletter should be more focused to people who are here everyday (less about proposals or people and more about the big announcements... sometimes they overlap, not easy to separate).
 

GreyGhost

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I was looking at the Newsletter as a part of non-disclosed (additional) work for the Dash World. Alas, no money ATM for it. We have to have it, say a Dash Monthly Newsletter, but it has do be done in a manner that is extraordinary. I do not think anything coming out of the Dash, as its official presence, should be allowed to be less than extraordinary.

A new website launch could be a good moment to start. (than, of course, "Join Us," a newsletter sign up form is a must)

As I was researching I liked this one:



 
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fernando

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Good for a website, but not for a newsletter. Emails with graphics normally look like this in my inbox:

View attachment 2408

I fear I'm not the only one...
I was gonna post exactly the same. I know I'm a bit old fashioned because I prefer only plain text email, but if we go html (as I guess we should if we want to measure anytthing), I would go with something super simple and clean.

Edit: I agree with @GreyGhost that it has to be extraordinary, but I think that will come from the content and we just need to wrap it in a design that helps without attracting too much attention.
 
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kot

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OK. Let's start from this maybe...
1. Which one of you likes and actually reads newsletters (if yes, what kind of newsletters are they)?
2. What is the most popular platform to distribute information at the moment?
3. What kind of content attracts average person?
 
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TheDashGuy

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OK. Let's start from this maybe...
1. Which one of you likes and actually reads newsletters (if yes, what kind of newsletters are they)?
2. What is the most popular platform to distribute information at the moment?
3. What kind of content attracts average person?

1. I read newsletters form places I want to know about, but ignore other that are sent to me in an effort to get me to try a new service or w/e, but if I already have visited the (store, website or w/e else) I usually will give thier emails a look over every so often just to keep myself in the loop. I also like to have updates sent to me for things I might have forgotten about like a launch of a certain service I signed up to be notified about etc.

2. Mailchimp, ConstantContact (less 'rule' heavy).

3. The kind that is often overlooked by many of us, the price, the advancements, the projects, the big news, the roadmap plans and so on.

I would even suggest having multiple lists for certain niches such as traders, miners, newbies, veterans etc.

If you need more people to help you with such a project, start making that known, just saying it's too much work like i've seen with other suggestions is a no-go for me, so how about we just assume the people will come forward to help when the work is needed of them and plan to do this the right way the first time around.

My first job was ecommerce and email marketing. This stuff is part of your BASICS marketing campaign, and if it isn't in place the only excuses is that noone wanted to do it.

Sooooooooo how many lists do we need? Should @itscrazybro start one for masternode.org or perhaps @orangecycle has an opinion here?

Obviously there should be a 'main' one to cover the big events and core related news, maybe there's one for newbies so we can send them tips and tricks on cryptocurrency and keep them in our funnel as long as possible instead of letting people feel intimated and running back to FIAT or bitcoin just because it's simple.
 
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kot

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Let's see what the others say. My answers would be:

1. I hate newsletters but I read some about: jobs, promotions in my favorite shops,
2. don't know (probably Twitter/Facebook as the "front end")
3. for me what looks attractive is the dynamic content (short, dynamic video). I am always pleased when I see a nice woman (obvious connection to sex mentioned above) or extraordinary piece of art
 
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GreyGhost

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@crowning @kot


For Sunday fun. ;)
A tad more seriously, perhaps, hopefully next week.

EDIT:
Even Bruce Schneier has a newsletter: https://www.schneier.com/crypto-gram/

The bottom line is simple:
a) newsletter reaches one segment of users or potential users that are comfortable with it:
b) the more - organized, purposful - avenues through which the info about Dash gets to an and user, the better.
 
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Sapereaude

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I been out of the loop working on a project for the past few weeks and it would have been great to be able to keep up to date with a weekly newsletter on developments.

The biggest question is I think is - are we looking for a single volunteer to run it(I think this would be too time intensive) or to get the people/person in charge of each project to forward their updates to be collated into a single large update?

I would volunteer on the second if an appropriate vector for distribution is found.
 

fernando

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I been out of the loop working on a project for the past few weeks and it would have been great to be able to keep up to date with a weekly newsletter on developments.

The biggest question is I think is - are we looking for a single volunteer to run it(I think this would be too time intensive) or to get the people/person in charge of each project to forward their updates to be collated into a single large update?

I would volunteer on the second if an appropriate vector for distribution is found.
I think this needs to be done by several people in collaboration. It is too important to rely on someone exclusively. However, in order to be coherent, there needs to be one that prepares the draft and then some editing/additions by others.
 

Sapereaude

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I think this needs to be done by several people in collaboration. It is too important to rely on someone exclusively. However, in order to be coherent, there needs to be one that prepares the draft and then some editing/additions by others.
So a shared google docs template and a simple mailing list then?

Do we have a list of all the current projects being worked on?
Perhaps split into technical and community sections?
 
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fernando

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So a shared google docs template and a simple mailing list then?

Do we have a list of all the current projects being worked on?
I would start there. However, I'm not sure all projects are relevant for a newsletter. For example, the migration of the forum has been a huge task, but someone who is not into the day to day of the community probably won't care about it.

Maybe we have a thread here in which people suggests topics. One topic per post. The three/four with more likes get developed into one or two paragraphs each in a shared doc. The next three or four are linked at the bottom of the newsletter.
 
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Sapereaude

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Yes a thread to bring together all the topics and projects would be the first step and then a vote would be best I think. Also to gauge what frequency people would want it.

Edit- In the morning when I am coherent and people have had a chance to comment, I will start such a thread.
 

fernando

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Yes a thread to bring together all the topics and projects would be the first step and then a vote would be best I think. Also to gauge what frequency people would want it.

Edit- In the morning when I am coherent and people have had a chance to comment, I will start such a thread.
From the comments above I'd say once a month with the possibility of a special issue for really big things would be a great format.
 
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TheDashGuy

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If nothing else we should just layout possible list "niches" such as intro users, veteran users perhaps even just technical and/or investor targeted lists, this way we don't get a crappy CTR and can get the most out of smaller emails with less content, because there will be months with little to email about and we'll have to still send SOMETHING out as they will be expecting it.

After we choose our paths forward we could start with the main campaign or perhaps an intro to Dash campaign that focus on stuff newer users would be curious about and sprinkle in some links to places like Dashwhale, Forums, Reddit and so on.


edit: If we go too broad we risk ALOT of people unsubbing from these emails, which is not our goal, we want them to stay in the funnel as long as possible, so we should only deliver relavant content to the user/reader.
 

fernando

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If nothing else we should just layout possible list "niches" such as intro users, veteran users perhaps even just technical and/or investor targeted lists, this way we don't get a crappy CTR and can get the most out of smaller emails with less content, because there will be months with little to email about and we'll have to still send SOMETHING out as they will be expecting it.

After we choose our paths forward we could start with the main campaign or perhaps an intro to Dash campaign that focus on stuff newer users would be curious about and sprinkle in some links to places like Dashwhale, Forums, Reddit and so on.


edit: If we go too broad we risk ALOT of people unsubbing from these emails, which is not our goal, we want them to stay in the funnel as long as possible, so we should only deliver relavant content to the user/reader.
I like the idea of many lists and topics... but how would you implement it? One big form with people saying what topics they want to be informed is too confusing... maybe different forms in different parts of the website? or maybe what you suggested of creating lists in other sites... but then we need to set it up in a way that doesn't breach the trust of users.
 
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TheDashGuy

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I like the idea of many lists and topics... but how would you implement it? One big form with people saying what topics they want to be informed is too confusing... maybe different forms in different parts of the website? or maybe what you suggested of creating lists in other sites... but then we need to set it up in a way that doesn't breach the trust of users.
I would say just set up a page on the website purely for signing up for newsletters, I mean we are bringing the financial revolution aren't we? I'm sure people are very curious as to how we plan to succeed at this.

It might be a tad bit of effort to sign up with multiple options and such but I don't believe ease of access is very important just yet, besides if you make it a tad bit more effort to sign up, you most likely also increased the click through rate anyways as you've always weeded out those users who weren't very committed yet in the first place.
 
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fernando

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I would say just set up a page on the website purely for signing up for newsletters, I mean we are bringing the financial revolution aren't we? I'm sure people are very curious as to how we plan to succeed at this.

It might be a tad bit of effort to sign up with multiple options and such but I don't believe ease of access is very important just yet, besides if you make it a tad bit more effort to sign up, you most likely also increased the click through rate anyways as you've always weeded out those users who weren't very committed yet in the first place.
That makes sense. I guess we can find a small amount to pay for the tools. I remember seeing a plugin that integrated with mailchimp that did exactly this. Maybe we have a simplified form for the "base" newsletter and when you sign up it offers other options or something like that... if you want them then it gets you to that page you described.
 
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TheDashGuy

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That makes sense. I guess we can find a small amount to pay for the tools. I remember seeing a plugin that integrated with mailchimp that did exactly this. Maybe we have a simplified form for the "base" newsletter and when you sign up it offers other options or something like that... if you want them then it gets you to that page you described.
Mailchimp is a steal, and if you want you can use it for free as long as you don't go over 2,000 subscribers, so test with a free account and a smaller email list and build from there, it's only like $50 bucks for up to 5000 subscribers and so on from there.

I'm sure you'll have well over 5k subscribers but hey it's a good way to bootstrap this while it gets figured out.

And yes there is a mailchimp HTML plugin for each email list you manage in mailchimp as well as feed specific data and all that jazz.
 
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fernando

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Mailchimp is a steal, and if you want you can use it for free as long as you don't go over 2,000 subscribers, so test with a free account and a smaller email list and build from there, it's only like $50 bucks for up to 5000 subscribers and so on from there.

I'm sure you'll have well over 5k subscribers but hey it's a good way to bootstrap this while it gets figured out.

And yes there is a mailchimp HTML plugin for each email list you manage in mailchimp as well as feed specific data and all that jazz.
I agree. In fact we already have the few emails we have over there :)
 
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