📖 Substack Course
Substack course for free for Blogging Guide paid subscribers (also available for purchase)
I’m excited to announce the launch of my Substack course!
If you are already a Blogging Guide paid subscriber, you can access the course be for free by clicking here.
If you are not a paid Blogging Guide subscriber, consider upgrading to full membership:
Substack Course Overview
Substack makes it simple for a writer to start an email newsletter that makes money from subscriptions.
The publishing platform has gained much of its media attention from high earning, "celebrity" writers.
However, there is a growing "Substack middle class" that is emerging as part of the broader rise of the passion economy. And you don't need to be a celebrity to make money writing a Substack newsletter.
Substack offers writers, podcasters, and other creatives a chance to monetize their "true fans" by providing web and newsletter publishing tools that are purpose-built for paid subscriptions.
While newsletters have been around for years, there is a huge difference between running an email marketing campaign and operating a paid subscription newsletter.
I've personally learned this (through much trial and error) by starting my own Substack newsletter over 18 months ago. And along the way, I've shared my findings across numerous platforms. I've also answered many questions from writers (through Substack’s Writer Office Hours, over email, or in my Substack Facebook Group).
I created this Substack Course as a way of answering many more of these questions, and because I’ve received dozens of requests on the topic!
While I cannot guarantee that your newsletter will become a 7-figure success like the top earning Substack writers, there are a number of foundational topics, tips, and strategies that can greatly accelerate your growth as a successful Substack newsletter creator.
While I already share many of these Substack insight on my website, this is an attempt to organize and expand these thoughts, with clear and detailed instructions.
Having previously launched a course (Medium Writing Course), I decided to stick to what is essentially a really well-formatted eBook for the majority of the course.
I may add some video modules in the future, but based on previous feedback, most people seem to prefer the clear and concise nature of a written guide (with detailed screenshots if visuals are needed).
The other advantage of this approach is the course can be truly self-paced (you can skip ahead, search for keywords, or use the hyperlinked table of contents) and that I can provide direct links to additional tools and resources. The bonus content will be organized in a Google sheet.
The course materials will be hosted on/downloaded from Gumroad.
Substack Business Model
Substack Writer Earning Potential
Substack's Advantages Over Other Digital Publishing Platforms (and how to properly leverage these advantages)
2. Substack Terminology
An Overview of Essential Substack Terminology
3. Starting Your Substack Newsletter (Research and Newsletter Creation)
How to Pick a Niche for Your Newsletter
How to Name Your Newsletter
Personalizing and Branding Your Newsletter
Formatting Your Newsletter's Essential Pages and Settings
4. Operating a Substack Newsletter
Differences Between Substack and Email Marketing
Adding Emails to Your Newsletter
Crafting The Perfect Substack Newsletter Email Subject Line
Best Time of Day/Day of Week to Send Your Substack Newsletter
How to Drive Engagement (open rates, increase CTR, comments, etc.)
The Different Substack Post Types
Popular Substack Newsletter Post Layouts
5. Monetizing your Newsletter
How to Enable Monetization
When to Enable Substack Newsletter Monetization
How to Monetize your Newsletter (Besides using the standard model of paid subscriptions)
6. Marketing Your Substack Newsletter
How to Find Your Newsletter's Target Audience
How to Promote Your Subscription Newsletter
How to Convert Free Signups to Paid Subscribers
7. Data Analytics & Subscriber Management
Understanding Substack Metrics
Substack Subscriber Dashboard
8. Substack Newsletter Podcast
How to Publish Podcasts on Substack
Tips for Marketing Your Podcast
🚀 Bonus Tools
Checklist of Places to Promote Your Substack Post After Publication
Many Free Substack-Specific Canva Templates. These templates will be drag and drop and completely accessible with the free version of Canva (just create an account, no downloads or complex software). They will include:
Substack Article Featured Image Templates
Substack Publication Logo Templates
Substack Email Header Banner Templates
Why Do I Need This Course?
While Substack makes publishing your newsletter very simple, monetizing your Substack can be quite challenging, simply because many writers do not understand how the platform works or they struggle driving traffic/subscribers.
Many writers quit or lose interest in Substack, not because they are bad writers or because they have nothing to say, but because they don't understand how to fully utilize Substack as a platform.
Common Sources of Frustration for new Substack Writers:
⚠️ Struggling to build an engaged following if you are not already an established author or social media influencer.
⚠️ Figuring out how (and when) to convert free sign ups into paid subscribers.
⚠️ Properly optimizing your newsletter so that you are taking advantage of every feature/setting.
This Course Will Help Writers:
✔️ Create their first Substack newsletter.
✔️ Understand platform specific jargon and terminology.
✔️ Build a following of actively engaged readers.
✔️ Learn new strategies to market and monetize their newsletter.
Why Should I Purchase This Course?
While there are some existing newsletter courses available online, none of these courses are focused on Substack specifically, and almost none of these courses are even focused on the operation of a subscription newsletter (they are focused on email marketing, which is very different).
This course is affordably priced (free for all Blogging Guide Subscribers) and all future updates to course content are included for free!
✔️ I operate multiple Substack newsletters, including Blogging Guide, which received the Substack Independent Writer Grant.
✔️ I have co-hosted Substack's office hours, to offer advice and answer writer questions.
✔️ I run the largest Substack-related Facebook Group, and I have my finger on the pulse when it comes to obstacles that new writers face operating their first subscription newsletter.
✔️ I built my own Substack newsletter to $10K+ in Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR) and have reached over 250 paid subscribers, in a little over a year. This is by no means a major “Substack success” compared to the top earning Substack writers, but for me, it was life changing, and encouraged me to keep pursuing work through the creator economy.
✔️ I am obsessed with digital publishing platforms! (not a surprise to many of you reading this 😂) That is the topic of my Substack newsletter Blogging Guide (helping writers navigate the digital publishing landscape) and the focus of my main website, BloggingGuide.com.
Let me know if you have any questions, and I’ll do my best to answer them!
Until next time,
*Disclaimer: While I am a huge Substack fan, I am not an employee of Substack. This course is created by me (Casey Botticello), and is not endorsed by or affiliated with Substack in any way. All thoughts shared in this course are my own opinions and do not reflect the opinion's of Substack.