I honestly would have never imagined that I will ever get here and write this article to you. Today is a special day as it is the 100th Edition of my weekly email I started almost two years ago.
Today, 100 weeks ago I decided to challenge myself and write a weekly email to you every Sunday night (well, sometimes a few days later I admit that).
When I sent out the first weekly email I was anxious but excited. I think on the first day around 30 people signed up, close friends and family mostly. I didn’t have much expectations but I wanted to do this for myself first and foremost. After all, writing for me is an extension of thinking and sorting my thoughts.
Now, 100 weeks later more than 30.000 people signed up and I’m still writing every week. I have to admit, there have been weeks I struggled to sit down and write and on others I couldn’t decide what to write because there was just too much to say.
There are tons of things I learned from writing these articles. Here are some of my favorite learnings:
I completely underestimated the work to promise a fresh new article every week. It would probably be easier for me to do some reporting on current events or news, or just share some links or write a diary style article (which I sometimes ended up doing). But sitting down for a new unique article every time did stress me out at times. To write consistently every week needs some serious planning especially if it's not what you do for a living and there are other things I need to work on.
PS: For some reason I started this blog on the side as well to write even more.
Un-Subscribes don’t matter as much as them seem. I noticed that my own expectations to this weekly email became higher and it kind of took the fun away from it. I remember the moment a couple thousand readers already subscribed to this email list and I closely monitored everyone who unsubscribed.
I have to admit it was dragging me down and I felt like I couldn’t make everyone happy at the same time. But even this was a learning phase I had to go through. In the last year I never looked at my unsubscribes again and started to even encourage people to unsubscribe. Because honestly, why force someone to stay on an email list? You either enjoy reading or you don’t. I even started removing inactive subscribers myself every other week. (for example, if someone hasn’t opened my last 10 emails I will remove the email from the list)
The only metric I look at is the open rate, how many people actually open my weekly emails, read them and click on links or engage in any other way. This usually tells me if people enjoyed it or not. I'm definitely invested in keeping a healthy email list, but I'm not obsessed with monitoring who unsubscribes after a certain email was sent.
The boredom comes fast. After writing this weekly email for a fair amount of time now I also noticed how easily I get bored with one specific format. You might have noticed I tried to mix it up a few times, rotating between unique and specific articles, diary style emails or even including some of my readers questions and answering them here. I don’t think I have fully figured it out yet, but one thing I know for sure is that I want to keep writing and keeping it real, authentic (gosh I dislike this word) and fun!
I want to take this opportunity to THANK YOU for your support and simply the fact that you keep reading every week. There is nothing more beautiful to hear from friends that I made it into their weekly Monday morning routine with this email. A little thing to get you started into a fresh you week.
THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU! The last 100 weeks have been unreal and this little community here is my absolute favorite thing. Thank you for being part of it.
I also have to giggle a bit every time I get an email back that says “This was your best article yet” because it only shows how different each reader interprets each of my emails. For one it might be the worst article yet, an for some it might be the best. But trust me, every week since I’ve started this weekly email it is harder for me to hit the “SEND” button. Even if I try and force myself to keep it casual, I still struggle to hit the send button most of the time.
I’m still reading EVERY SINGLE reply I get back via email, even if I sometimes won’t be able to reply, or it might take me weeks to reply. I appreciate you, your thoughts and your feedback. I'm listening and even if I miss to reply, your voice is heard and does influence future emails or articles.
I promise to keep writing here every week and if I’m overly motivated, I will put it on my blog where I started sharing even more articles. My goal is to keep this email list more private and “rough”. Shiny interviews and articles will go to my blog from now on, more personal and rough thoughts will go on this personal email list.
Oh, and here are some of my personal favorite articles from the past 100 Editions: