This is a full tutorial on how to use Aweber to create email lists, send emails and newsletters.
Create Aweber Account
Aweber is free for the first 30 days so you don’t actually have to pay anything. But going forward there is a monthly cost associated with Aweber but its worth it because of all the functionality if you’re serious about email marketing.
Create An Email List with Aweber
Once you’re logged into your Aweber account, you will be redirected to your dashboard.
The first thing we want to do is create an email list. Even if you have a list you want to import, you need to create a new email list first.
- Click on Manage List on the upper right corner OR scroll down to the bottom to the GREEN button that says Create A New List
- If you go to the Manage List page, click on the button that says Create A New List
- Go through the steps (add company information) then click Next Step
- Name your list and add a description and click Next Step
- Add a confirmation message and click Approve Message and Create List
Create Email Templates
If you want to create an email template that you can reuse with different information, then this is the section for you.
Please note you can also customize the Aweber templates if you click on the button that says TEMPLATES on the right. But we are going to create our own following the steps below.
- Hover over Messages on the top tool bar and click on Email Template Manager in the drop down
- Click the button that says “Start with an Aweber Template”
- Type in a title for your Template
- Drag and drop whatever you want to customize your template (see more info below in italics)
- Make sure you click Save when you’re done
This is where you’ll drag and drop whatever you want to create your template
You can modify and customize the look and what the content has in your boxes. In the video tutorial for how to use Aweber I show you how to create a custom template.
You can create as many email templates as you want. Just make sure you save them all. When you create your messages (emails to send out) you can choose which template you want.
*Note you can also make a template when you create a message.*
Create Email Message / Newsletter
Creating a message is the same as sending out a campaign (if you’ve used mailchimp in the past). But Aweber defines a message and campaign differently.
To get to the messages page, you can do a few things.
- Go to your main dashboard by clicking on the Home button the navigation menu
- Click on the drop down next to Manage Lists at the upper right corner and then clicking on the list you want to send a message from. Then push the create message button.
- Choose the list you want in the upper right drop down, then go to the Message section in the navigation menu and choose Drafts and then click the button that says create message.
Once you push the button that says Create A Message you can choose from three options
- Drag and Drop Email Builder
- Plain Text Message
- HTML Editor
We’ll be focusing on the Drag and Drop Email Builder (similar to what we did in the Create a Template section)
- Type in a subject for your Template
- Drag and drop whatever you want to customize your template (see more info below in italics)
- You can preview your email message at any time by clicking on the blue button on the right corner titled Preview & Test
- Make sure you click Save when you’re done or Save and Exit to see the send options
Sending out your message is very simple. You can either schedule a time to broadcast (send out your message) or send it out immediately by clicking on the send options and choosing what you want to do.
After you send the message, just sit back and let the analytics roll in so you can see who opened and read your email and who clicked on what.
Create a Campaign (multiple timed message series for a list)
Campaigns are great to automate a sales pitch or just to email a list over a period of time a number of messages.
You have two options for your campaigns – either add people to the campaign when they are added to your email list or add people to the campaign when they are tagged to be added.
- Go to Messages and click on Campaigns
- Click on the button that says Create A Campaign
- Give your campaign a name
- Choose whether you want subscribers to be added to your campaign when they subscribe or when they are tagged. If tagged then you need to type in the tag
- If you choose for a subset list to be tagged then you need to go to your subscribers list and click on manage and add a tag to your subscribers by clicking on their name and adding the tag in the “Additional Notes” section
- Now you want to add the number of messages you want to send out in your campaign by dragging the boxes on the left titled Send A Message into the main section (add as many as you want)
- You need to create the messages so click on each message box and create your messages or choose from an existing message
- Now you need to schedule when these messages are sent out. To do that, you need to drag in the boxes titled Wait on the left hand side between your messages and schedule when the next “action” will be performed.
- Click inside the wait boxes to schedule when you want the next message to be sent.
- Click Save and Exit when you’re done.
And that is how you create a campaign.
You can also add or delete subscribers to new subset lists by tagging subscribers that receive these campaigns by adding the tag box and filling out the tag information.
Create a Tag and Subset List
To tag subscribers and create a subset list – so you can send messages out to certain subscribers, do the following –
- Go to your main Aweber dashboard
- Hover over subscribers and click on Manage Subscribers
- Click on the email subscriber’s name you want to add a tag to
- And on the next page where it says Additional Notes -> Add your tag there
- Click Save
- Do this over and over again to add tags to whichever subscribers you want to tag
Segmenting Your List
After you’ve tagged your subscribers or once your subscribers are tagged (two different things) then you can segment the list
- Hover over Subscribers and click on Manage Subscribers
- On the next page you’ll see a drop down that says “Select Field” and two other boxes next to it
- Choose “Additional Information” for the first box
- Choose “Is” for the second box
- Type in the tag in the third box
- Click Search
- Once the search is complete it will show any of the subscribers with the word you specified for their “Additional Notes” field. Next to “Save As Segment” type in the name that you wish to use to identify this segment of subscribers. Click the “Save” button.
Now you have a segmented list that you can send messages to
Autoresponders are follow up emails that are sent to your list. They can include whatever information you want.
All you have to do is create a message by doing the following –
- Hover over messages and click on drafts
- Create a message
- Once you create the message click save and exit
- Now go into your send options and click add to follow up
- Then choose when to send this message after someone has signed up
You can add as many follow up messages to send at a scheduled time after someone signs up as you want
Upload Files to Send Out
- Uploading files is really simple for messages. All you need to do is go to your messages page where you create a message.
- At the bottom you’ll see a paperclip
- Click on that and find the file you want to upload
- And click upload.
- Now the file will be sent with your message
View Aweber Analytics
With Aweber, analytics are pretty easy and require little to no additional installation other than sending out a message.
- You can view a report by just clicking on Reports and then clicking on whatever statistics you want
- You can also search for different statistics by subscribers if you hover over subscribers and click manage subscribers
- Then search a selected field like “Link Clicked” in the drop down
If you want better analytics to track where your subscriber goes to your site -> You just have to paste in some code
- Hover over reports and click on Settings
- Copy the code in the box you see on the next page
- Open up your website (most likely wordpress)
- Add the code to your footer.php above the </body> tag. It’s best if you have a child theme to put this in.
- Otherwise you can download a plugin to add this code 🙂 Great solution too.
- Then just go back to Aweber and go to Step #2 and add your website name
- Get Your Aweber API Code
Some additional things you might want to do with Aweber are below.
Send Broadcast After Follow-up Emails
If you want to send a broadcast after your follow-ups, the first thing you need to know is how many follow-up emails you have.
- Hover over messages, click on follow-up series, and count the number of follow up emails you have (the list should be numbered)
- Now go back to the dashboard and hover over Subscribers and click on Manage Subscribers
- Choose “Last Message #” from the select field drop down menu. For the middle select field drop menu, select “is”. Last, type the number for the last follow up message in your series. Once complete, click the “Search” button
- Name the segment with a name and click the “Save” button to save the segment
- Now hover over the “Messages” tab and click “Broadcasts”
- Create your broadcast message if you haven’t done so already
- Once you’re broadcast is created, go to the “Publish” section of the message and select the name of your custom segment you saved in Step 4
Now, when you send your broadcast message it will be sent to only the subscribers who completed your follow up series.
Send Blog Broadcast
If you want subscribers to automatically get an email with your latest blog post, then follow these instructions.
- Make sure you’re on your dashboard
- Hover over messages and click on Blog Broadcast
- On the next page, click on the button that says Create a Blog Broadcast
- Now you want to enter your RSS feed URL (if you don’t know this, you can just type in “http://www.yourwebsitename.com/feed”)
- After you’ve put in your RSS feed URL, you need to choose a template for your blog posts to be sent out with. In the drop down on the right side, you should be able to choose the template you want (you can preview the templates if you want)
- Now select when you want the email broadcast to be sent out in the Send Time drop down
- Then select the number of posts to trigger a broadcast or what day to send out a broadcast
- After that, you have the option to click if you want the broadcast to be sent automatically (yes if you check the box). If you want to review the broadcast before its sent, just leave this blank. And you can review the message in the draft folder before you send.
- Once you’re ready, just push Save Blog Broadcast and you’re good to go 🙂
Import Email List
- Hover over Subscribers and click on Add Subscribers
- On the Add Subscribers page you will see a button that says Import More than 10 Subscribers. Click on that.
- Next you’ll see a drop down to choose the list you want to import your subscribers to. Choose the list you want to use.
- Now drag the file that has all your stored emails into the Drag box or click to browse to find the file you want to upload
- The next page you see is where you see the information for the first subscriber that was entered. Next to their information you will see several drop down menu’s. From these drop down menu’s select the field that their information should be matched with. 🙂
- Click Next when you’re done
- On the next page, just add in the details of where you got these subscribers and click Next
- Now with your new subscribers, you can add them to your follow-up sequence if you want or a particular message.
- Once you choose from the step above, click Next
- On the last page, you’ll be asked if you want your newly imported subscribers to opt-in again. By default, No will be checked.
Export Email List
To export your contacts from AWeber just do the following
- Log into your AWeber account.
- Click Subscribers > Search.
- Click Search to bring up all of your contacts or use keywords to find a specific group of contacts.
- Click Export CSV at the bottom of the page.
- Save the file to your desktop.
All done 🙂
Extras: Optin Services and WordPress Plugins for Aweber
Now let’s talk about a few other things.
Okay, now that you know how to use Aweber, I want to give you some additional help.
There are plugins you can download in wordpress to use as your optin forms. These are fine. The one I recommend is “Optins Form” because of it’s functionality. But I don’t like that you have to pay to have more than one optin list.
If you’re going to pay for any sort of optin service, the best one I know of (and personally use) is LeadPages.
LeadPages is awesome because it makes a subscriber click a few times and invest into opting in. It works. I can say that with 1000% confidence. But you have to pay for this service but for me, it’s paid off and I am so happy I got it.
- Now what sucks about LeadPages is that you don’t get the super nice optin forms like right of the bat.
- But once you click on a link you do 🙂 and that means more to me.
- I rarely have optin forms on my pages any more – I don’t think they work that well nowadays.
- What I have instead are images or book covers or banners that say “Get this now!” and someone clicks on it and a leadbox by LeadPages pops up which I think is super powerful
Leadpages also offers some simple analytics about how many people click and how many people sign up so you can adjust your strategy.
I’ve been using LeadPages since July 2014. Before that, I just had an optin form. I’m still amazed at the growth 🙂
So really. If you can invest the $ and want to get more email subscribers – give LeadPages a go. I will talk more about this later but I’m happy with it and so are some of the most successful online entrepreneurs.
Extra Extra: How To Get more Email Subscribers
Back in the day, all you needed was an optin form that said “Subscribe to our weekly newsletter” or something like that.
But the world has changed! And people want something for free in exchange for their email address.
So try this strategy next time you want to increase your subscriber base.
- Offer a free cheat sheet with 5 or so simple tips to your service
- Offer a free ebook (doesn’t have to be long)
- Offer something…anything! 🙂 It will work a lot better than an optin form with no offer.
That’s all folks. Get those emails. Follow up. And get more business or traffic.
P.S. I didn’t talk about this here in detail but emails are far better than Facebook likes, twitter followers, and maybe youtube subscribers. So start collecting emails right now.