Power your email newsletter from your blogs RSS feed
Your blog is where you post your news, updates and ideas. It is basically your web based newsletter. Dijest makes it super simple to power your email newsletter from the content already in your blog. Simply decide how frequent you wish your newsletter to be, weekly, bi-weekly, monthly etc. Then build your content strategy around that. If you don’t have enough content to send the newsletter as often as you would like, then you can supplement your content with some other complementary content that will be of interest to your subscribers.
Our own Dijest newsletter uses exactly this strategy so this tutorial will walk you through how it works.
1: Connect a blog
A blog should have an RSS feed for the published content, this is an ugly looking XML document, here is an example of ours. This is what Dijest uses to stay up to date with a blog’s content. To connect to this, go to the ‘Application Settings’ panel by clicking on it in the menu in the top right of the app and select the ‘Data Sources’ tab.
In the RSS/Blog Feed box enter the url to your blog page (ours would be https://dijest.io/resources/blog/) and press the test button. If it comes back with ‘Valid feed’ then you are good to press the ‘Add Source’ button, which will allow Dijest to suck in new content from your blog automatically every 30 minutes. If the test button returns ‘Invalid feed’ you may need to ask your blog provider to provide you with the url of the RSS feed.
The content from your blog is listed in the applications ‘Discovery’ tab as a list of cards. By default it only shows content from the last 24 hours so you may need to extend this by clicking on the ‘Limit To’ drop down and selecting a longer period.
From the discovery view you can see the content available for inclusion into your newsletter. You can share content from here into your Facebook or Twitter accounts or you can delete content that you don’t want. If you have enough content in the discovery view to build a newsletter than you can just switch over to the newsletter tab now. However if you need more content you should read our tutorial on ‘Discovering content’.
3. Configuring the Newsletter
Switch to the ‘Newsletter’ tab and application will render your newsletter. You can drag stories in the ‘Content’ tab up and down the list to reorder them in the newsletter.
The subject line automatically takes the heading of the top article by default but you can override this simply by editing it. To set options for your newsletter switch to the ‘Options’ tab, here you can upload your company logo, select your prefered template and company colors.
It is also where you can set the ‘Newsletter Data Source’. By default this is set to ‘Discovery All’, but other options include ‘Discovery Starred’ where only starred items from the ‘Discovery’ tab are shown in the content list. Or if you have connected to your Facebook page, then this will also be offered as an option. See our ‘Dijest and Facebook – Tutorial’ for more details on this.
The ‘Time Period’ setting beneath this, dictates how far back Dijest looks when finding compatible stories. Ideally you want about 10 stories to create a newsletter. If you plan to send out a newsletter every week then you would set this to 7 days, for a month you would set it to 30 days. This helps to prevent you from including the same story more than once.
4. Send It
Once you have it looking good send yourself an email preview click on the ‘Send Newsletter’ button and choose ‘Send Preview’ this will email a copy of the email to you. At this point you could choose to download an HTML copy of the email to send however you wish… but we would recommend that you connect your Dijest account with one of the specialist ESP’s that we support. These companies are masters of deliverability and make it easy for you and your newsletter readers to manage subscriptions and unsubscriptions. They also provide comprehensive analytics on how well your newsletter engages with your readers.