Getting more subscribers on Substack is more easily said than done. You can increase your Substack subscriber count in a number of different ways, but some methods are more impactful than others. A good newsletter list on Substack can lead to more sales, leads and traffic to your other content.
Recently, Substack has made it much easier to grow subscribers by adding newsletter tools that aren’t available elsewhere. It’s an actively changing platform that want to see its creators thrive and takes steps to help.
If you’re looking to increase your subscribers on Substack, look no further.
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What is Substack?
Substack is a newsletter platform that has quickly gained popularity over the last few years. It now offers newsletters, podcasts and a paywall for creators to publish content for paying members.
It was established in 2017 and has since gained traction as one of the premier newsletter providers in the world.
How to get more subscribers on Substack?
There are several ways to get more subscribers on Substack. The best method to grow your subscriber count is to simply promote your content in several different online spaces and social channels. However, these days it takes a little more effort and creative thinking to truly grow your Substack newsletter.
Use these proven tips below significantly increase your subscriber count on Substack.
Promote your Substack newsletter online
This first method is simple and you’re probably already doing it. Drop the link to your Substack newsletter anywhere you can. Tweet it out on Twitter, place it in a Medium story, you could even use it on Quora when answering a question.
The goal here is just to make sure you cover your basics. Increasing your subscriber count on Substack means hitting every possible method, even the most basic ones.
After you’ve promoted your Substack newsletter online everywhere you can, it’s time to dig in to the bigger tips.
Run a parallel system to get subscribers
A parallel system for a newsletter is basically another way of saying develop a system for generating leads. For me, it means creating a note on a form that says I can import your email address into my Substack newsletter after you sign up to write for my publication.
This is a parallel system because I need to gather emails for new writers who want to write for my Medium publication anyway. I’m just adding a note saying that those emails will be added to my Substack newsletter.
By doing this, I’m able to generate a nice chunk of subscribers because they are opting into my newsletter by wanting to write for my online publication, which is my parallel system in this case.
If you have your own kind of parallel system that generates the need for an email address to sign up or participate, think about using it to double down and grow your Substack email list.
Get other creators to recommend your Substack newsletter
Substack is a very forward-thinking platform and recently announced newsletter recommendations. Creators can recommend other newsletters to their subscribers. This is an extremely effective way to grow your subscriber count.
Reach out to other Substack creators and ask them if they can recommend your newsletter or you can swap recommendations for each other. Just make sure those creators are in a similar niche as your newsletter or it won’t make sense, and the subscribers you get won’t stay.
Keep your Substack newsletter free
Many creators want to make the move to monetizing their newsletter behind a paywall. While I understand Substack makes it extremely easy to create a paywall, you might want to avoid this if your goal is to grow your newsletter subscribers.
The truth is people like free stuff. The idea of a possible paywall will scare off a lot of new subscribers, even if you also have a free version of your newsletter.
By keeping your newsletter free, you attract any and all readers who want to see what you have to offer.
Offer high-value information in your Substack newsletter
This is an extremely obvious tip, but only publish high-value information in your Substack newsletter. Don’t write about basic information or waste any of your readers’ time. By offering valuable information, you’ll find more readers will share your newsletter and your subscriber count will grow.
Word of mouth is one of the best ways for readers to learn about new things. Offering valuable content is a great way to get readers to share your newsletter with others.
Use Substack’s custom buttons
Substack offers custom buttons that give readers a nudge to subscribe. Use them. It’s like a nice little call to action and pushes readers into giving their email addresses and signing up.
The great part about Substack’s platform is there are a variety of different buttons to help new readers sign up for your newsletter and subscribe.
Utilize the Substack app
The Substack app is relatively new and is driving even more readers to engage with the platform. Use this to your advantage.
Download the app and see how your newsletter looks on it. I guarantee it looks different than your online account and that’s OK. The goal is to understand what app readers are seeing and make sure you’re offering the best content available for emails, online and in the app.
You can also use a Substack button to help readers download the app. This can convert readers into more active followers of your newsletter because now your emails will be notifications sent straight to their Substack apps.
Join Substack’s Grow Fellowship
Substack had a Grow Fellowship to help creators gain bigger audiences. It’s unsure whether they will offer it again, but if they do make sure you apply. You’ll get helpful information and lessons from Substack itself, with the entire goal being getting more subscribers.
A huge driving factor behind why so many creators like Substack is because it can be optimized for search engines. Google can find your Substack newsletter and bring subscribers organically.
This works because Substack doesn’t just send newsletters to your readers, it also posts the newsletter online in a blog format. You can customize each newsletter’s slug, headlines and meta information to make it more attractive to search engines.
Many creators generate a ton of subscribers to their Substack newsletters from search engine traffic. It’s just like owning a blog except you’re getting subscribers instead.
Get other newsletters to write a blurb
Substack recently enhanced their endorsement features and now they allow recommending newsletters to leave a short blurb about your newsletter. These blurbs appear right before a potential subscriber enters their email and helps finalize the conversion process.
Blurbs on Substack’s platform look like this:
Substack is a wonderful newsletter provider, make sure to take advantage of all the opportunities it provides to help get more subscribers.
Many newsletter providers don’t house old posts or offer an app. These features can be leveraged to quickly get more readers and grow your audience.
Learn how to average 100 subscribers weekly on your newsletter.