Good Old-School Toddler Training + Personal Experience
Long before the Internet materialized, Momma taught me not to blindly follow the crowd. In unmistakable language, she preached the value of thinking:
That’s the beauty of genuine wisdom. It finds increasing strength as time passes, as opposed to corrosion.
The same vibe insisting an email newsletter is “critical” adored the thrill of automated direct messages on Twitter, a scourge so profound Twitter changed its API to kill it. Likewise, the me-first-and-always mentality condones a punch in every site visitor’s face—i.e. the popup syndrome—as a mere irritant, cuz gosh, darn, it works. Really? Google’s response? Get a clue or watch your site disappear from search results.
50 years ago-—yes, 1969—the first eMail traveled from computer to computer. More recently, Google created the Promotions folder to <cough>tame</cough> nonessential eMail.
My personal experience with eMail subscriptions prompted severe reliance on disposable eMail addresses, courtesy of 33mail.com. The fact that disposable addresses enjoy intense popularity stands as the strongest rebuttal to what eMail newsletter purveyors would have you believe about eMail efficacy.
Combined, all of these factors triggered my decision to research alternatives to eMail-based blog subscriptions. The results confirmed my initial “there’s gotta be a better way” inkling. As I work in the background to implement the best of my findings, I share my research trail below.
Telegram: a Viable Alternative to eMail Newsletters
SMS offers what eMail does not: no-fuss immediacy. Why do I care? An example best illustrates my concern. As Valentine’s Day approached, I noticed meaty sales on WordPress.com upgrades as well as renewals. The likelihood of a related blog post being read immediately? PuhLease! eMail newsletter? Ditto, since folks treat the Promotions folder as anything but critical. But SMS-style communication? Well, think: how do you react to SMS versus eMail vs blog posts?
- MakeTechEasier: How to Get Your Gmail in Telegram and More with Telegram Bot
- GreenGeeks: How to Set Up Telegram to Be Used with WordPress
- BotPress: Telegram Bot 2.0 for WordPress: welcome BotPress!
- Cleveroad: How to Save Lots of Money Using Telegram for Business
- Paul’s Dev Blog: PART 1 Telegram Bot Tutorial – APIs and Webhooks
- WPBeginner: How to Integrate Your WordPress Site with Telegram
- Dignited: How to Create an automated Telegram Bot to post in your Telegram Channel
- BotAnalytics: Make Chat Better with These 20 Best Telegram Bots
- Process Street: How to Build Your First Telegram Bot: A Guide for Absolute Beginners
- ThingsBoard: Notifications and Alarms on your smartphone using Telegram Bot
- Medium: Telegram Is The Solution To Your Membership Business — Here’s Why!
Personal vibe: I avoid all things Facebook when I can. For that reason, I steadfastly ignore articles and tutorials about using WhatsApp as a blog-oriented eMail replacement. But I respect the reality that others may think differently. Hence, this Facebook-flavored alternative to Telegram, with a bonus: the basics provided lend an assist for the creation of a Telegram opt-in page. 🤗
- MobileMonkey: Tips for Creating a Facebook Messenger Subscription Opt-In Page
Sneak Peek of the Telegram Look
To experiment with the look of Telegram’s contents, I tapped my BuJo-focused Instagram account. IFTTT can be configured to include caption info. That caption data seems closest in appearance to WordPress data before the “more” tag. The results confirmed I’m on the right track.
I’ve attended no coding classes. I teach myself as I go along, despite the shivers of fear greeting me as I venture beyond my comfort zone. So why do it? Two reasons.
- My love of a challenge overwhelms the fear.
- I believe in pulling the best bang for my effort-bucks.
Intuition suggested indulging eMail newsletters would provide an abysmal RoI (return on investment).
Add: my Spidy sense distinguishes between those with a vested interest trying to sneak pinkies into my wallet, vs objective analysis by those committed to ferrying the best options on a particular subject.
My reward: a well-supported open-source scheme with privacy at its core. Indeed, a Telegram username suffices in lieu of a phone number. And, Telegram remains absolutely free. Free for me to manipulate and employ. Free for you to use. Contrast that with the hundred$ pulled, SaaS-style, by the email newsletter developers and their affiliates.