My Experiment with Tinyletter

A few months ago I switched my A Lesser Photographer newsletter over to Tinyletter. I did it because a smaller experiment I did with it months earlier showed a significant increase in reader response. Plus, it was easier, faster and more fun than Mailchimp or Constant Contact. So, I made the plunge with my entire list. Here’s how it went.

  • In the first few weeks, I lost about 3% of my subscribers. There could be many reasons for this, but the 3% were regained pretty quickly with promotional posts on the site.
  • I did not receive anywhere near the amount of feedback I did in my earlier experiment. Reader engagement is not measured in responses, but it’s nice to have.
  • I received a few complaints about the Tinyletter system. Some readers found the whole thing inconvenient compared to what they signed up for on Mailchimp.
  • Opens and clicks increased over time, as they did on Mailchimp. Opens ebb and flow with time, but with proper list maintenance, they remain extremely high on this newsletter (60-80%) compared to other newsletters of this age. Maintenance is harder on Tinyletter.
  • There was a systemic error with my last newsletter that broke my favorite link in the issue. Readers noticed. That hurt.

It looks like I may need to reopen my Mailchimp account based on the inconvenience to readers alone. It’s really is a shame that when Mailchimp bought Tinyletter, they couldn’t just integrate the two into an optional simpler system that worked for everyone.

At this point my newsletter is big enough that this will start costing me real money on Mailchimp, which means a sponsor may be a good idea.