Growth Currency ⚡

⚡ How to make your first newsletter dollars—without a massive list.

published3 months ago
6 min read

You're receiving this because you subscribed here OR here or maybe here.
This email may contain affiliate links. I receive a small commission for recommending products I use & love at no extra cost to you.

[Read the browser version right here]

Manage Your Next Project With Basecamp.

This week's edition is sponsored by Basecamp.

Ever felt like the day is going by and you’re not getting anything done?

This is what happens when you manage projects with email. Information gets lost and nothing makes sense.

Basecamp solves this by making managing projects easy for everyone. Want to know how?

Try Basecamp Today »

This is GC⚡ #77 — your secret weapon for newsletter growth ⚔️

A special welcome to the 91 newest members of the Growth Currency⚡ newsletter community!

Thank you for giving me space in you inbox. 🙏

Did someone forward you this newsletter? Subscribe here »

[GC News & Announcements]

What's happening this week?

🚀 The 1KS Roadmap launched!

I launched the 1KS Roadmap in May. Over 450 people took the free course on how to get the their first 1,000 newsletter subscribers. But I've revamped it and partnered with Vineet Sinha to deliver the course... *drumroll* ...directly via Twitter!

This version provides more assignments and incentive to do the work with BONUS tips & templates.

Enroll now »

Social proof ↓↓ 😁

twitter profile avatar
Ian Efford 🌎
Twitter Logo
July 19th 2022

✍️ Great Founders Write: Write online to grow your business.

Ben Putano created the Great Founders Write cohort-based course to help founders, builders, and freelancers get 100% clarity on their messaging, personal brand, and improve their writing skills. The initial cohort is complete, but signups for the August cohort are now open.

Write your way to success »

▶️ [FREE] Notion Basics Course with Sara Loretta

Sara is a certified Notion consultant and a stupendous individual. And generous, too. Sara's put together a pretty killer Notion Basics to help get anyone started using Notion—for free. I already was using Notion, but I went through it and learned a TON.

Get the FREE course here »

[GC Editorial]
How To Make Your First Newsletter Dollars...

—without a big list or selling ads.

Don't kid yourself.

Monetization is the point of a newsletter either indirectly or directly.

Your newsletter’s goal is to drive revenue for you. Some newsletters drive users to a SaaS (Software as a Service) website, a coaching or consulting website, or product page on Amazon or Gumroad. Others drive revenue right inside their newsletter — directly.

And what’s the easiest way to drive direct newsletter revenue?

Affiliate sales.

What are Affiliate Sales?

It’s pretty simple: you sell a product or service for someone else — and receive a commission on the sale.

That’s an affiliate sale. And it's the first form of revenue I ever earned with my newsletter—with only a few hundred subscribers.

Affiliate Links

Affiliate sales typically only work with a unique, custom link.

For example, when I signed up for the Ship 30 For 30 (←affiliate) I was given a unique affiliate link. I shared the link in my newsletter and made a couple of sales, which earned $50 in commission each.

What can you sell?

You can sell anything, but you shouldn’t sell everything.

The most successful affiliate newsletters and websites only drive their users to products and services that are relevant to their users’ needs and interests. The more aligned, the better your odds at a sale.

Popular affiliate products & services to sell are…

  • SaaS tools & subscriptions
  • Amazon & ecommerce products
  • eBooks, online courses, & community memberships

But what affiliate products should YOU sell?

Read the rest »

Get a Fresh Start with the Best Marketing Platform for Creators.

Go and watch your first YouTube video.

Read your first blog post.

Find your first newsletter edition.

Listen to your first podcast episode...

Now, compare it to your most recent piece of content.

It’s night and day, isn’t it? You may have even felt a little (actually, maybe a lot) embarrassed.

As embarrassed as you are, that’s also how proud you should be, because that’s how much your content has grown—how much you’ve grown.

If you're like most creators, your marketing platform reminds you of that first creative effort. It has not kept up. You need a fresh start.

Get a Fresh Start with ConvertKit»

Your Growth Currency ⚡ This Week

"Knowledge is the currency of growth."

Carefully curated resources to help you: Start + Grow + Improve + Monetize your newsletter

Let’s get into it!


6 types of newsletters you can start today by

I found this gem in the Paved newsletter and had to share—especially since I just wrote about how finding a niche isn't a requirement when starting a newsletter. This post by gives you 6 (+1 bonus) types of newsletters you can start. I love this powerful introductory point:

By choosing a well-defined newsletter type or genre:

  • your readers will know what to expect in every issue,
  • you'll have clear models to follow and iterate upon,
  • and you can enter in-demand niches from a unique angle.


How to Grow a Newsletter with Dylan Redekop by Alastair McDermott

I went on the Recognized Authority podcast back in May to chat all things newsletters with Alastair McDermott. We discuss how to grow a newsletter, the different types of incentives we can offer subscribers to join the list, and why giving away value for free is crucial.


How To Create An Elevator Pitch For Your Business by Annie Maguire

"What's it about?"

Your newsletter needs an elevator pitch. You should be able to explain what your newsletter is about in a few sentences. This article by Annie gives you a framework for creating an elevator pitch—plus great examples for businesses she's worked with.


Paid newsletter best practices: Tried-and-tested tips from successful operators by Kaleigh Moore

If you're trying to grow a paid newsletter, or thinking of going paid—read this. Kaleigh dissects 5 paid newsletters with 5 main tips for helping paid newsletter operators.

A poignant snippet:

"Treat your newsletter as a product."

[#GC Affiliate]
Go pro as a full-time creator? Do it here.

"Where Creators go pro—together."

Doing the whole creator thing can be a long, lonely journey. Well, it doesn't have to be—and it isn't with Jay Clouse's Creative Companion Club (CCC).

It's a private community dedicated to supporting part-time creators to become FULL-time creators where the core principles of the community are Reach, Revenue, Resonance, and Relationships.

When you join the CCC, you get full access to the entire Circle community, plus:
→ Shared Focus Sprints (landing pages, lead magnets, community building, and more)
→ Direct, honest feedback from Jay and the community
→ Access to all past & future workshops
→ 1:1 Coaching with Jay (Hot Seats)
→ Community Swipe File

Sounds like fun? Learn more »

(Affiliate disclosure: the above is an affiliate link. I wouldn't have affiliated with Jay's community if I didn't believe in it.)

Thanks for making it to the end—I try and save some gold for this space.

Nick's made an observation.

twitter profile avatar
Nick Simard ⚡️
Twitter Logo
July 19th 2022

The problem, as I replied to Nick, is that "we" (as in, most of us on Twitter) have to revert to these tactics to get our tweets & threads actually surfaced by the algorithm changes.

But wait—there's more.

twitter profile avatar
Ada Powers is hirable
Twitter Logo
July 17th 2022

Seems these days, you go viral on Twitter—or you get zero.

What's the solution?

How would you rate this edition?
⚡⚡⚡⚡⚡ Electrifying!
⚡⚡⚡ A decent jolt.
Just static...

Hit reply and let me know why — I answer every one :) Or DM me on Twitter!

And in case you missed it, here are last week's TWO most popular links:

#1: How To Build Your Email List From Scratch with Matt Giaro (affiliate link)
15 newsletter growth tips by Aleyda Solis

Other Growth Currency⚡ Resources:

The 1KS Roadmap: A Free Course To Your First 1,000 Subscribers
The Ultimate Creator Database of Awesomeness
How To Start, Grow, and Optimize a Substack Newsletter
Advertise in this newsletter

Peace and platonic love,


Twitter | Medium | Instagram | TikTok