Email can be overwhelming and sometimes we do it to ourselves. I’ve signed up for more newsletters than I care to count. Last year I used Unroll Me to unsubscribe from thousands of emails to which I was subscribed.

It was part of a strategy to test my theory that newsletters from other people aren’t just for the trash and that you can use the content for your social media and blog posts.

Here’s how to use newsletter content for your blog

Get rid of the noise. Stop getting distracted by the sheer number of emails that you receive. Don’t be afraid to hit unsubscribe. You can always subscribe again if you miss the content but I am willing to bet you won’t.

Clear the Clutter

Eat, sleep, and breathe your mission to clear the clutter from your email. Hit unsubscribe until you’re dreaming about it. I eliminated all but a couple dozen newsletters and started from a clean slate that included trusted sources, colleagues, and thought leaders.

10 Favorite Newsletters

  1. Garrett from CoSchedule
  2. Copyblogger
  3. Vertical Measures
  4. Ragan’s Daily
  5. American Express OPEN Forum
  6. Simply Measured
  7. Moz
  8. The Muse
  9. Mashable
  10. Lifehack Daily

How to Use Limited Content

With a smaller number of emails, I had time to actually open and read the content. Truth be told, sometimes it’s a scan of the headline and a quick decision. The point is that I don’t let email newsletters sit in my inbox for more than a week.

  1. Schedule a social media post with a link to the content. There’s no need to re-write a blog post that’s already good or great. Just share it. It’s a great way to repurpose old content. You’re providing value and consistent posting for your community.
  2. Add it to the editorial calendar. If there is something in the content that you want to make a statement about or that you want to use in a blog post of your own, add the link to an editorial calendar of ideas for use later.
  3. Forward to a friend. Sometimes the newsletter content isn’t appropriate for me or my clients. If you think it would be useful to someone else, forward it to them and delete your copy. It keeps your email inbox clean and provides value to someone else.
  4. Don’t be afraid to delete. If it’s crap or irrelevant, delete it. If you continue to get this type of content, consider unsubscribing.

For the content that you’re adding to the editorial calendar, ask yourself:

  • Is this topic relevant to my target client?
  • Can I say this better than the writer of the original? (if not, see #1 above)
  • Can I use one or two of the points and expand them in my own blog post?
  • Can I use some or all of this content as a reference in a future post that’s already on my calendar? Remember, we’re clearing clutter so think that way when you’re adding to your calendar.
  • How can I provide value to my readers with this idea?

Ultimately blogging, and, as I found out, newsletters, are about providing value to readers. Neither is for the trash.

Yes, there are bloggers and website gurus who will tell you blogging is about SEO and driving traffic (and it is) but as a small business, it’s mostly about establishing yourself as the expert and providing consistent, relevant content. If content from a newsletter helps you develop content, stay subscribed, otherwise, hit unsubscribe and start decluttering your inbox!

If you’re overwhelmed at the prospect of blogging for your business, contact us today.