Good morning and happy Monday. Still enjoying getting your eyeballs slapped by promo emails? 🤣 I guess today is “Cyber Monday”, right?
Seriously, it felt kinda good that the week was just normal for me. Because… I wasn’t participating in the whole “Black Friday” rush. And instead of peppering you with emails, I was with my family and spent a great day e-biking out in rural Florida with my wife.
Win-win, right? 😇
Yes, the newsletter looks different today.
I’ll explain that below.
In This Post…
Saying Bye To BeeHiiv
I hinted this may happen soon. But yes, I have decided to bring this newsletter back “in house”, back into FluentCRM, and stop using BeeHiiv.
Interesting decision, perhaps. Especially considering my reasons for switching to BeeHiiv in the first place.
And to be clear, I have nothing bad to say about BeeHiiv whatsoever. In fact, the exact opposite. It is a great platform… and it is getting even better quickly because they release new product enhancements seemingly every week.
BeeHiiv is great for newsletters. It is being built for newsletters. But…
It is being built pretty much only for newsletters. BeeHiiv isn’t yet anywhere close to being a real marketing automation platform. It doesn’t yet have basic functionality like proper custom fields, tagging, etc.
I think some of that still will be added to the platform. But, the truth is…. BeeHiiv is built for newsletter publishers. And that means they have different focuses in some areas.
This is why I decided to halt this little escapade I’ve been on to using an outside system for my newsletter. I was using FluentCRM and it was going just fine. I got a case of “grass-is-greener”-itus and went switching over to BeeHiiv thinking it would accelerate growth.
But, it doesn’t do that.
The “Why” For BeeHiiv
Why bother with something like BeeHiiv?
What would BeeHiiv give you that something like FluentCRM wouldn’t?
One is the ability to simultaneously post to a blog while emailing the list. That is convenient, to be sure. I’m going to work with the FluentCRM folks about making this easier, but in the meantime I can copy/paste my newsletter if needed.
But, the bigger use case would be the growth and monetization tools. Things like:
- The built-in referral program.
- The built-in monetization option by cross-promoting other newsletters and accepting ads
- The ability to pay for “boosts” to grow your own newsletter through cross-promos from other people.
- The ad network, leading to additional monetization options.
All very cool, to be sure. But, here’s my the thing to keep in mind on this:
- In reality, the referral program is a bit limited. Not only that, people don’t tend to really use it as much as you might think.
- If you’re using your email list for business, then cross-promoting other newsletters can be a huge distraction. This is something more fit to traditional publishers than email marketers. Simply put, if I want people to buy my stuff, why would I promote other people? 🤷♂️
- Paying for leads costs money. And it is not uncommon to need to pay $2.00+ per subscriber to grow your list through BeeHiiv’s growth tools. Sometimes much higher. This is quite common (even outside of BeeHiiv), but it is important to realize that if you’re considering a platform like BeeHiiv for the growth opportunities. Those growth tools aren’t free. 😇
The Target Market For BeeHiiv Is…
If you’re looking at a newsletter as a publisher, BeeHiiv is probably a good fit. In fact, it is quite good for this. In other words, your newsletter IS your publication. It IS your business. And you’re in the business of selling eyeballs.
This is more like the business of selling banner ads on your website. Which is something I particularly dislike these days. 😎
That’s not my business model.
I don’t think I’m the right target market for BeeHiiv.
When BeeHiiv Is A Bad Fit…
In the end, there’s a big difference between a business doing email marketing and a newsletter publisher.
While I do create content, I don’t consider myself a publisher. For me (and perhaps you, too), content is a marketing format. But, the product of my business isn’t my content nor the traffic. My money is made by selling products and services that I create. I sell things like ONEPass with the online training… and Concierge for your WordPress site.
Because of that, there’s more going on here than a newsletter. I need more flexibility than BeeHiiv can provide.
In fact, BeeHiiv just gets in the way because it wasn’t built for the needs of an email marketer. It isn’t built for the needs of a business owner. Instead, it is built for a person who makes publishing newsletters the business itself.
And while one of the best ways to monetize any newsletter is to sell your own stuff, you sure as hell don’t need BeeHiiv to do that. 😎
Back to FluentCRM
To be clear, I never left FluentCRM. I just took a temporary foray into having two different systems. Something I do not recommend, BTW. 😫
FluentCRM is powerful. It does everything I wish BeeHiiv did.
It also doesn’t cost me $99/month lilke BeeHiiv was. 🤷♂️
FluentCRM can do newsletters (like I’m doing right now), but it can also power all of your marketing campaigns, automations, everything. In fact, it is really a great replacement for expensive tools like ActiveCampaign. In fact, Jack from WP Fusion just switched out of ActiveCampaign over to FluentCRM for his own business and documented how it all went in this blog post. An interesting read.
Will I miss the growth tools of BeeHiiv?
Don’t think do. I can run ads to promote my newsletter if I want. I don’t need BeeHiiv for that. I can also set up paid cross-promos with other newsletters if I want and use FluentCRM’s Smart Links to give one-click subscribes to those ads. That isn’t a feature exclusive to BeeHiiv.
FluentCRM feels like home. And I’m happy to go back to the simplicity and power of having everything in one spot.
FluentCRM continues to be my primary recommendation for anybody looking for an email list solution.
And frankly, I openly admit…. it was a mistake for me to go off hunting for a shinier object.
As it turns out, it wasn’t better.
Well, better at some things. Just… not better with the things I actually needed.
Announcing the Founder’s Memo
You know, one of the big things that started the ball rolling on leaving BeeHiiv was that I had no way to segment the list in a way which would allow me to offer different emails to the same list.
Remember several weeks ago when I was asking you about emailing you more often? I wanted to begin emailing more than just Monday mornings. And when I surveyed you guys, the overwhelming majority of you were quite supportive of the idea as long as you had the ability to choose. Made perfect sense! But…
BeeHiiv couldn’t do it.
But, FluentCRM can. And now I am moving forward with this idea.
I’m calling it The Founder’s Memo.
The Founder’s Memo is more personal. More about things I’m trying out. Things I want to share. Strategies and insights and things I’m excited about.
There aren’t multiple sections. No “latest posts”. None of the fancy newsletter-y things. Just… an email that I write and send to you and I hope you find it useful.
The Founder’s Memo will be shorter.
It will be more frequent. Not daily, but maybe twice per week? We’ll have to see where we land with it.
The Morning WP (this newsletter) will continue like it is. This newsletter is longer. And will continue to be sent once weekly.
The Founder’s Memo is different.
Do you want to join me?
WordPress Quick Bits…
FluentBooking got a big update. Version 1.2.2 now has Apple Calendar integration, one-click Google integration, Microsoft Teams support, rescheduling options, booking frequency control, etc. This was a pretty big update. Amazing to see how fast they’re moving with this product. Read more about this update here.
Spencer Forman did a great interview with Matt Mullenweg (considered the “Founder” of WordPress). It was a frank conversation where Matt gave some insight into some of the inner workings of the day-to-day of WordPress and a few of the complaints. If you’re interested in WordPress as a platform, it is a good interview to listen to. It is over on Youtube.
Kadence Blocks Is Getting an Advanced Query Loop. There’s some nerd talk there, huh? But, this one looks cool. You will be able to build custom listings for custom post types, custom taxonomies, along with a lot of filtering options. This looks like it is going to be quite powerful, perhaps even replacing the need for something like FacetWP in some instances. Click here to learn more about it (and watch their video).
Fluent Forms was updated to 5.1.3. Some of the improvements for this release are improved performance, fixes for migrations from WPForms and Gravity, new support for ACF fields on post revisions, improvements to AirTable integration, and more.