Making the Most of FeedBlitz: Content-Specific Mailings with Filters

Click to download the 'Making the Most of FeedBlitz' e-bookLet’s say your blog covers PR, online advertising and social media. For the sake of argument, let’s also assume that you blog about each of these topics equally. If a reader is only interested in what you have to say about PR, then your posts about online advertising and social media, while no doubt highly illuminating and full of pithy insight, will be less relevant to that reader. Two thirds of the time you send a mailing you’re more likely to miss than hit with that individual “ and with loss of relevance comes the risk of increased unsubscribe rates.

You can reduce this risk dramatically with FeedBlitz. You can use tag and category filters (we treat tags and categories as being the same for filtering purposes) for RSS-powered mailing lists. So, for example, you can create different lists sending different content from the same source feed. Content-specific lists increase the relevance of each email sent to someone on that list, which in turn reduces churn and unsubscribe rates.

For the above example you’d create four lists: All Posts, PR, Online Advertising, and Social Media. All except “All Posts” would use filters to make sure that their subscribers only get relevant content. Once set up, all you have to do is use the correct category or tag consistently when you post. Easy.

Alternatively, you can tell FeedBlitz to exclude certain tags and categories as well, or instead. We at FeedBlitz use this capability to make sure that we do not email out posts on the blog tagged “noemail” “ these are typically service messages. That way, occasional status updates about the state of the day’s FeedBlitz mailings (for example) aren’t mailed out to the subscriber base later in the day when the service message is no longer relevant.

To configure filtering for an existing list, open up the list from your site navigation by clicking its envelope icon, and click its orange “Settings” button. On the page that appears, click the link where it says that FeedBlitz sends “all posts”, and set up the filters. Like RSS feed tag filters, if you specify multiple keywords, a tag or category match on any keyword activates the filter.

To quickly create multiple lists for different audiences from your site, all you need to do is clone your “All Posts” mailing list and add the filter(s). Here’s how:

  1. Pick your “All Posts” list envelope icon in the FeedBlitz navigation.
  2. Click its orange “Settings” button.
  3. Click the green “Clone” button upper right.
  4. Clone it without changing the schedule.
  5. Add / change filters, and edit the name of the list to match the filters selected.

Once you’ve got each clone built and defined, repeat the process for the next tag / category / keyword.

If you’re offering multiple lists, you now need to get those options in front of your site visitors so they can actually subscribe! For that you need to tweak the subscription form, like this:

  1. Pick any of the lists in the FeedBlitz site navigation.
  2. Click the orange “Form Code” button.
  3. On the right, pick either of the “All Public” options.
  4. Choose how you want the options displayed to users.
  5. Configure the other options as you wish.
  6. Copy the code to your site.

And that’s it! When your readers start the subscription process they will be asked to pick which list(s) they want to join. They self-select into the most relevant lists for them, which keeps them that much more engaged “ and around as subscribers – for that much longer.