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AWeber – Broadcast

In this video, we’re gonna use Aweber to create a new blog broadcast. So once you have created a blog broadcast, any blog content that you publish will automatically be included in your blog broadcast and an email will automatically be sent out to your subscribers based on the settings that you entered in Aweber.

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So, to get started, what you need to do is click on Messages and go to Blog Broadcast.

So, on this page you can see your existing blog broadcast or you can just create a new blog broadcast if this is the first time you are using this function in Aweber. Okay, so the first thing you can see here is the RSS feed URL. Now, this is really pretty simple to get. You can either use the default RSS feed URL in your blogging application, for example, from your WordPress blog, or if you are using a third-party service like FeedBurner, then you can put in your FeedBurner feed URL into this column here. The only difference is that if you use FeedBurner, and if you already have some subscribers on your FeedBurner account, then the data from your FeedBurner account will be merged with the data from your Aweber account, so therefore, when you display the amount of subscribers using the Aweber Opt-in Form, the amount of subscribers reflected will be a sum of your existing Aweber subscriptions and also existing RSS feed or email subscriptions through FeedBurner. So you actually get a much bigger amount of subscribers, assuming that you already of course, have some subscribers in FeedBurner.com.

If you’re not sure where to get your default RSS feed, then just go to your WordPress blog home page and somewhere along – somewhere in this team, you should see…let us scroll to the bottom…right, somewhere in this theme, you would see a link for the Entries (RSS) and also the Comments (RSS). So this is the URL that we want to get. I’m going to Copy Link Location.

And then again on my Aweber page, I’m just going to piece in the RSS feed URL, so, once that’s done, I want to select a template. As you can see, the Subject field here and the HTML Message field, and also the plain text field is pretty much uneditable at the moment. This is because you first need to select a web template.

So here, scroll to the right a bit so that you can have a better picture of what’s going on. So, in this section here, you can see that there are tons of Ezine templates or email templates that you can use. And the basic plain template is, well as you can see, the preview here is just pure text. But, of course, you may want to have a better template. You may want to have some HTML where you can put in your website logo, etc. So you can just browse through these templates. Just click on the individual template link here, and you will see in this preview window right here how this template looks like. So you can see that there are tons of templates that you can choose, and it would be pretty easy to slightly modify these templates to match the exact look or layout of your blog.

So I’m gonna go with a very basic-looking template here. In Aweber, this is called a Bigfoot template, and they have three color variations, I’m going to go with the blue one. And once I’m satisfied, I just click on No Template.

And, as you can see here, now all these fields are filled up, and you can see the HTML template that appears right here, and also the matching pure text template that you get right at the bottom. So a few things that you may want to do, is, number one – to customize this template to put in some of your own links and also some of your blog information or your company information, for example. And any of these variables you see in this bracket here will automatically be replaced based on the settings in your Aweber list. So you can just let these variables be as they are, and you should probably just replace all those hot-coded links in here. Alright?

And assuming I want to link this to my website, this is called the WYSIWYG editor or the “What You See Is What You Get” editor, so it pretty much looks like a Microsoft Word or any other blogging application that you probably have used. So, I’ll just want to click here, link…and I can enter the link here.

I’m gonna insert. Alright, so now you can see that I’ve customized this link. There are a few other links to go. I won’t do it here, but the important thing is that you can customize this HTML template till you feel pretty comfortable that it sort of looks like your actual blog layout or it matches the design that you had in mind. Now, the next thing that you’ll want to do is scroll to the bottom and this section here is probably one of the most important features of your Aweber blog broadcast. Now, unlike RSS feed subscription or an email subscription using FeedBurner, you can actually schedule your blog broadcast and you can even group several new blog posts together. If you’re using the Aweber or FeedBlitz or any other third-party service, then an email would be sent out daily for all your new blog posts on that particular date. And in some cases, an email is sent out to your subscribers for each blog post that you publish.

So you definitely have a lot more options using the Aweber blog broadcast service. So to start off, I’m going to select the Send Time. I can either choose to send immediately, or at only a particular time. So some – a lot of marketers say that there are particular times in the day when your emails would get opened much more than other times, and this is usually something like 9am Eastern Time or even lunchtime, according to Eastern Time, of course. But, if you are in other parts of the world, and you probably want to refer to the world time zone information to convert this Eastern Time to your local time to get a better estimate of exactly when your emails would be sent out. So, I’m just going to select ‘Immediately’.

And next is the important question, “How often should we send your blog broadcast?” So you can either send out a blog broadcast for every new blog post that you publish. This is okay if, well, if you publish only two or three new blog posts in a month. But if you publish a lot of content daily, then you’ll probably want to set this higher. Generally speaking, I think about 5 new – you can group 5 blog posts into one email. That should be pretty okay. Of course, again, it depends on how often you publish content on your blog.

Now, if you want an email to be sent out automatically once you have published 5 new blog posts, then you can just select this option here, but if you want to wait till a particular day of month, then you choose this option on a specific day and select what date. So, for example, if you want to send out an Ezine or a newsletter every two weeks, then you could probably select it here…alright? You can add one day. Example, I’m going to select the 7th. Alright. And the next one would be 28th. Okay? So I can actually select the specific dates that I want to send out my blog broadcast.

And again, no matter what option you choose here, you can always select to send this out automatically, or if you want to manually review your blog broadcast to make sure there are no errors, then make sure you do not check this options so that you will be able to see the pending broadcasts in your Aweber account, and then you could manually edit your blog broadcast and schedule it to make sure that there are no errors in your blog broadcast, and I recommend that you should manually edit and broadcast at least for the first few Ezines or newsletters that you send out.

And then let’s go to the final few options here. You can choose to track clicks on your links and I recommend that you do, so that you know exactly which links are being clicked on and you can always check this data later through the Aweber reports section, to see which are the most popular content, or which are the most popular products that people want to know more about. And, in this option here, you can choose to syndicate all your blog broadcasts into an RSS or XML feed. Now this is not the RSS feed from your blog, but this is an RSS feed published by Aweber that would contain all your previous blog broadcasts from this particular list.

And you can see there are a few formats here, but this would be empty at the moment, and I’ll show you later in one of the other videos how all these syndication links work. Now, one of the more recent additions is the ability to syndicate just the title of your blog broadcast to your Twitter account. So if you have a Twitter account, you may want to check this option as well and put in your Twitter login and password here.

What happens is that when you actually send out a blog broadcast, the title of your blog broadcast would be shortened to about 140 characters and posted to your Twitter account with a link back to the Aweber syndication feeds, as you can see here. So that will be just another way for you to get your messages out, to get your emails out, and to reach your subscribers using some other tools like Twitter. And once you are satisfied with the settings, you can just either click on Preview or just Save Blog Broadcast. Alright? So it says, “Your RSS feed has been updated,” and so now I can see my feed title. The feed title here appears as “Your Site Name.” Now, of course, the title that appears here is entirely dependent on the actual WordPress blog title that you are using. So in my case, I just used a very meaningless title here, which I put as Your Site Name. So that’s what appears here exactly.

And you won’t be able to change this title here. But don’t worry about that because this title is just for your reference and this is not the title of the emails that you’ll be sending out to your subscribers. The title of the email or the blog broadcast that is actually sent out to your subscribers is usually the last – the title of the last post to be included in this broadcast. So for example, I’ve chosen to include 5 items in this particular blog broadcast. So the title of the broadcast will always be the title of the fifth item or the fifth blog post that has been entered or queued to be emailed in this particular broadcast.

So that’s really how you do an Aweber blog broadcast and you can always go to your existing broadcast to edit the templates and to add some images, to add some videos, etc., etc., whatever you want. And you can always refine this over time and to improve the look and also to improve the layout of your emails.