If you are hesitating setting up email marketing because of the learning curve, then you can knock that off right now! Today I will show you how to use MailerLite to create your first campaign!

Why should you start using email marketing?

Email marketing is the way to get loyal subscribers, as well as people who will help you narrow down the focus of your blog.

Because if they stick around, it must be for a reason right? You will be able to poll your readers to see what they most want to read, thereby helping you with ideas of what to write about.

As well, if you decide to create a course in the future, you will already know what subject your course should be about. Win-win!

Why should I start now?

6 steps to getting started with mailerlite
Pin it!

The sooner, the better! And especially if you have a new blog, because as you learn and as your site grows, you will already know how to do the hard stuff (learning how to set up email) and the hardest part (writing and sending your first email) will be over long ago.

Every time someone comes to your website for information, you should give them a reason to stay. If they are truly interested in your content, you should establish a relationship with them so that you can give them more of what they want.

I think we all started our websites with the idea of helping people, and this is the main way to do that. You offer freebies and see if anyone signs up for them. If no one does, you create something else to give away. Eventually you will know exactly what your audience wants.

I sign up for stuff all the time, don’t you? You need info, you sign up for an email course to learn how to do stuff. So your visitors want the same thing from you.

And if they are enjoying what you have to offer, they will want more. They will sign up for email courses, and they will buy products that you recommend. That is why they come to your website, to learn! To get help! To get their problems solved by someone that they trust.

*This post contains affiliate links. If you click the link and sign up for MailerLite, I may receive a small commission at


Let’s get to it!

When I first started looking at email marketing options, I went with the one program that I knew would be free for a long time, which is MailChimp. It took a while to find the right information to help me set it up, but once I had it rolling I was good.

Then I took an email list building course that recommended MailerLite as a free email option (vs ConvertKit which is $29/month minimum), so I signed up so that I could get going on that course. I have never looked back.

If I had just started out with MailerLite, I probably would have put more effort into learning how to get more blog traffic and I would have a bigger list by now. But no, I stopped dead in my tracks using MailChimp, because all the cool automation stuff was not available to me, and I thought that this is it, this is all that I can do.

As well, you cannot merge lists with MC. Everytime someone signs up for a freebie, and if you have lots of freebies this part can be annoying, they get signed up to a new list. When it comes time to pay for MailChimp, you will find that one person can be on several lists. This eats away at the “number of subscribers” budget. In MailerLite, everyone comes from one main list and goes into segments (if you choose to use segments to sort your subscribers).

MailChimp also does not have all the bells and whistles that MailerLite has, which is why it was so easy to not move forward with it. I could not see how to get better results. That and the “no support” option.

MailerLite is simple to use, has amazing features and most importantly is FREE. Not that free is always the best, but I had read that many big time bloggers went for a few years without setting it up, so I thought there might be a big learning curve, therefore free is better to learn on if it is going to take weeks or months (it doesn’t!!), or at least that was my logic. I was operating with new blogger brain and did not know any better.

Benefits of Using MailerLite as your Email Service Provider (ESP)

Free for up to 1,000 subscribers

Unlimited emails every month

Email Automation (!!), Landing Pages, Popups

Integrations for Zapier, Shopify, Instafreebie, SUMO and WordPress

Bajillions of video and blog-post tutorials on how to use this amazing free product!

MailerLite help icons
Help is on every page ๐Ÿ™‚

Help is right there on the dashboard, in the bottom right corner, just a click away. If you have a more detailed question, MailerLite responds by email as well. There are tons of helpful videos on how to use MailerLite, available by clicking the ? icon.

Seriously even after 1,000 subscribers there are still a ton of benefits to using MailerLite over pretty much any other ESP. The next pricing tier is $20 a month for up to 5,000 subscribers. That is still pretty economical for a program with this many features.

Negatives

Affiliate program?? Everyone who signs up for the free program is obviously not paying anything for you to receive a commission on.ย However, you do receive credits and when someone advances to a paid plan you can apply your credits to your own plan, so that is a plus.

MailerLite sign up form
Look how easy it is! What are you waiting for??

Please go to MailerLite and sign up so that you can follow along with this post.

In order to use all the features, you will have to verify your website domain, and this may take a day, but usually only a few hours.

Here is a picture of the top left side of your dashboard. You can see your dashboard from almost every page.

MailerLite dashboard

 

Dashboard: The main page of your account. Find your recent activity here

Campaigns: These are the regular emails that you have sent out recently, or emails sent from RSS, which is what you set up if you want to send your subscribers a weekly email of your latest blog post(s).

Subscribers: All of the people that have signed up to your opt-ins. If you have segmented your audience, then you will see how many people are in each segment.

This is also the area where you will import subscribers from another ESP.

You will have to create a subscriber group when you first sign up. This is the main group for subscribers. In my case, it is named after my website URL because that is where my subscribers are coming from.

Forms: All the opt-in or opt-out forms that you can create for your website/blog. In here you will create all the opt-in forms that you could ever want. You can customize by using your brand colors, add thumbnails to your opt-in, and make them horizontal to fit across a blog post or vertical to fit in your sidebar.

Automation: You can set up a โ€œwelcomeโ€ series of emails here for when people sign up for the first time. I will cover this in another post, as there will be a lot of screenshots.

Automations are different from a campaign because you can create as many emails as you want and then set up when each one in the series gets delivered. This is how you introduce yourself to your subscribers and it is also going to be a thank you to anyone who signs up.

Or you can create an email course to send to subscribers, such as โ€œ7 days to a tidier homeโ€, and then send one email for each of the seven days.

Your dashboard gives you a snapshot of what has been happening recently with your account. You will see your most recent campaign, how many people have signed up with you, subscriber growth charts and your automation queue.

How to create a campaign in Six easy steps!

Step One: Click CAMPAIGNS from the upper left menu and choose the orange CREATE YOUR FIRST EMAIL button.

This will take you to the main page which allows you to choose which type of campaign to use.

Regular is where you write out an email and schedule when to send.

A/B Split Campaign allows you to send two emails that are similar but have alterations allowing you to test which one has better results.

Auto-Resent allows you to resend an email to people who did not click a link or open the email.

RSS allows you to connect your websiteโ€™s RSS feed to MailerLite. Use this to send out your most recent blog posts automatically to your subscribers.

The simplest choice is REGULAR for a campaign. Choose that and then decide on a subject line. You can personalize this and use emojis.

The subject line is is what your recipient will see when the email comes to their inbox, so use an appropriate subject line. Over time you will learn more about what resonates with your audience, but for now we just need to get started.

Related Post: Writing effective email subject lines (from my series of posts on using MailChimp)

Go ahead and put something in the subject box so you can move ahead with this tutorial. You can delete the entire campaign later or edit the information.

Make sure that the FROM field box has your registered domainโ€™s email address in it!

When you are ready, click the orange NEXT: Content button to move forward.

Step Two: You may be tempted to choose the Drag and Drop editor, but your recipients will appreciate a bare bones email more, especially since they can be read on any device. You can still add images and styling, so go ahead and choose Rich Text Editor.

Step Three: Write your newsletter. If you use the Personalization, you will not see it โ€“ it just shows up within the email as {$Name} or {$email}. And you will also not see it if you send a test email to yourself, but trust me it is there.

I know because I messaged support about it and he verified that it is indeed there.

You can change your font, font size and the color of any link text on the right hand side.

In the top menu area, you have various formatting options and can add photos, links, underlines and strikethroughs.

When finished, choose DONE EDITING and move to the next area.

Step Four: Choose your segment here or all subscribers and click NEXT: Review and Confirm

Step Five: From this next area you can send yourself a test email to check for errors or grammar etc. If you want to format or change the text, choose Edit. When finished, choose NEXT: Schedule

Step Six: Choose your sending options. If you choose Send Now, it is done. The email goes out instantly and cannot be retrieved for editing so be sure that you are done before choosing this option!

Send Later allows you to pick the date and time, and is a better option. You can still set it to go out whenever, but if it has not been sent, you can cancel it, do any editing, and then choose the send options again.

Alternatively, you can send based on time zones, so that everyone gets the email at a specific time based on their time zone.

If you have Google Analytics set up (you do, donโ€™t you??), then check the box to have GA track your campaign stats.

Related Post: Google Analytics Tutorial

When you are finished, click SEND. You will be able to see your email in the Outbox.

That is it! Super simple. You will see your email in a queue to go out. You can click on it, choose โ€œcancelโ€ and this will stop the campaign from sending and allow you to edit it.

After the campaign has been sent out, it will appear in the SENT folder. You can now view reports on this campaign, including open rate, clicked, unsubscribed, spam complaints and bounces.

Do not be alarmed if you see spam complaints. Some people, rather than going through the process of unsubscribing, will mark the email as spam. While this is kind of lazy, it happens.

Also, do not concern yourself with unsubscribes. They are a good thing, because that person is not a good fit for your content. Some people only want the freebies and then they are gone, so do not lose any sleep over the un-subscribers.

Soon you will have so many subscribers that you will not even notice the people who leave.

Click here to get started with MailerLite!

Ok, that is it from me. Now it is your turn – I want to know your thoughts on setting up an Email provider, who you recommend, what you struggle with or any other thoughts that you have on the subject.

Don’t be shy – tell.us.everything ๐Ÿ™‚ย  the good, the bad, and the ugly. Dont’t forget to add me on Pinterest

Have a great week and happy blogging!

-Irma

Author: Irma

A single mom and online entrepreneur, learning to navigate through courses, webinars, and PDF downloads to create a new life for myself, and to teach others to do the same!

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18 thoughts on “How To Use MailerLite

  1. Hi Irma, I’m so happy I came across your pin on Pinterest!
    It brought me to your amazing site, full of very useful information! I had signed up for Mailerlite back in May and it was only after I read your post, that I decided to go ahead and set up the email service.
    I had Mail Chimp for another site and I just couldn’t get my head around campaigns and the basic flow of emails. Mailerlite is so much easier to work with. I followed your instructions and I can say I’m so happy to get the pop-up and the welcome email done for my new site.

    I’m also with WA and I’ll make sure to follow you there as well.
    Thanks for the great content!

    Cheers!
    Giselle

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    1. Hello Giselle and thank you for visiting us today,

      I am glad that you found my post helpful and are enjoying Mailerlite. I love MailerLite and I am also happy to have made the switch from MC as well.

      MailerLite landing pages are super easy to set up, with all of their drag and drop functions, and I just recently went through the process of creating a newsletter with radio buttons so that my subscribers could answer a question for me.

      The help team walked me through the whole process and I was done with everything in less than an hour! Best of luck to you ๐Ÿ™‚

      Cheers,
      -Irma ๐Ÿ™‚

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  2. Hi, question, Is there no side widget opt-in form we can create with the mailer light?

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    1. Hi Stefan and welcome back!

      Yes, Stefan, there is. From the dashboard, choose Forms > Create Embedded Form. Give it a name that will make it easier to find later if you want to change anything.

      I named my form “sidebar” and added my subscriber group. When you get to the design area, the top part on the right gives you the choice of default, horizontal, or card. Choose default.
      Under that you will see FORM DESIGN. In here, choose Default, which gives you a narrow form for the sidebar. You can make it even more narrow or wider by using the + or – next to Width.
      Go ahead and type in your text from here, change your colors etc.
      When you are done editing, grab the html code and plug it into a sidebar widget in your theme. Check from there that it is to your liking being sure to add a strong call to action in the button design.

      Hope that helps, and email me if you have more questions, and I will help you as best that I can.
      Cheers,
      -Irma ๐Ÿ™‚

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  3. Hi Irma, thanks for your article passing on the benefits MailerLite delivers to a website.
    I keep contemplating whether to generate an email list to occasionally share a newsletter with members containing links to recently published posts. Iโ€™m sure this will improve visitor numbers & my blog presence plus it’s free – great news.
    My only worry about email lists concerns data protection, the predicament of keeping members names & email addresses in this current climate. Does MailerLite include an opt-out button for you or them to immediately delete members data or is there another way?
    Thanks for your time,
    Simon.

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    1. Hello Simon and thank you for visiting us today!

      From what I understand, the subscriber has to contact you to have their data deleted and this only applies to members of the European Union, not the rest of the world. I just sent out a custom email to my subscribers in the EU asking if they want to stay on my list. They said yes. Done. MailerLite has a system in place for that, as I would imagine all ESP’s do.

      If that person wants to unsubscribe, there is an option for that placed into the footer of email templates. As well, when the “thank you for subscribing” message goes out, it also has an unsubscribe link in it.

      Right now, compliance means telling people exactly what they are opting in for when they sign up, such as a weekly email newsletter with tips or your latest blog posts.

      I am in agreement with some blogger friends who do not think this compliance thing will impact us smaller bloggers very much and it is no reason to be intimidated by setting up an email campaign.

      Hope that helps!
      Cheers,
      -Irma ๐Ÿ™‚

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  4. Hi Irma. I just recently installed MailChimp to my website. I’m not sure yet which is the best. I’ll keep an eye on MailerLite as well. Thank you for sharing this information. All the best.
    Ivan

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    1. Hello Ivan and thank you for visiting us today!

      MailChimp is awesome if you are looking for a simple newsletter provider, and is free for 2000 subscribers. I wrote a series of posts highlighting it last summer. Best of luck!

      Cheers,
      -Irma ๐Ÿ™‚

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  5. Emil marketing has been something I have been slow to get going. Like you I have used MC because it gives you up to 2000 signups before having to pay. You mentioned a course you took mentioning ML. Can you elaborate?

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    1. Hello James and thank you for visiting us today!

      The course that I took is for list building, and the course creator used ConvertKit exclusively and only had one or two options available for other programs, and she recommended MailerLite as an option. I was thankful for that, as I am not willing to spend $29 at the beginning of my email marketing experience.

      There are plenty of reviews out there comparing MailerLite to MailChimp, but also quite a few comparing MailerLite with ConvertKit, because many people are unwilling to spend the money for ConvertKit.

      Cheers,
      -Irma ๐Ÿ™‚

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  6. I have used other methods for email lists before, but I like the idea of using mailerlite! Seems very straightforward and formatted to work well with my website. Thanks!

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    1. Awesome Jacob and thank you for visiting us today!

      Cheers,
      -Irma ๐Ÿ™‚

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  7. Hi, Irma,

    This information helped me a lot, as I was searching for appropriate email service provider. MailerLite seems like a perfect solution for me! Not only it is free at the beginning, but it has tons of functionalities, to create your email campaigns.

    What is your impression of their support, and is there any difference between free and paid subscription, regarding support?

    Thank you

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    1. Hello Tony and thank you for visiting us today!

      I have an ongoing conversation with support at MailerLite right now, and it has to do with sorting my users into GDPR groups or other groups, so that I can target them correctly. When I first asked for help, one person emailed me back quickly. I did not respond right away, but when I did, someone else responded. This is helpful, at least for me, that there is always someone there who can help.
      I was given very detailed instructions to follow and had most of it sorted right away.
      There is also a feedback mechanism – if you are watching a help video and it does not answer your question in a way that helps you, and that was answered almost immediately through email as well.
      I cannot speak to the paid level of support because I am not paying yet, but I am finding the free support to be awesome!

      Cheers,
      -Irma ๐Ÿ™‚

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  8. Great post tons of good information that are very informative and is of a great help to your reviewers.

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    1. Thank you Norman and thank you for visiting us today!

      Cheers,
      -Irma ๐Ÿ™‚

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  9. I know for a fact that email marketing works. It may seem slow at first but, things begin to pick up. I have seen people open emails 6 months down the road and make me a sale. Thanks for the helpful steps that you listed. Very well done ๐Ÿ™‚

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    1. Hello AJ and thank you for visiting us today!

      And thank you for verifying the effectiveness of email marketing. Amazing about people opening emails months down the road lol.

      Cheers,
      -Irma ๐Ÿ™‚

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