How to build a newsletter referral program with Substack

How to build a newsletter referral program with Substack

Since the announcement of The Newsletter Referral— our latest referral marketing template that allows you to integrate your referral programs directly inside your newsletters, we made quite a few upgrades.

Every week we come up with a new email platform that integrates with the template, and up ’till now, you could use The Newsletter Referral with:

The Newsletter Referral is really simple to set up and use. All you have to do:

  1. Create a Viral Loops campaign using The Newsletter Referral template.
  2. Customize it.
  3. Connect your campaign with the email platform you’re using.
  4. Turn your readers into ambassadors, get more email subscribers, and build a stronger community through word-of-mouth.

We’re always trying to support more email platforms for The Newsletter Referral, and today we announce something that fills us with pride:

The integration of Substack with The Newsletter Referral.

By connecting your Substack account with The Newsletter Referral, you can:
  • Build referral programs that run entirely from inside your newsletter emails without any coding skills.
  • Automatically reward your most loyal readers.
  • Generate unique referral links for your subscribers.
  • Keep your Substack lists in sync with your referral programs.

This article will guide you through embedding a referral program to your Substack newsletters with The Newsletter Referral template.

Do you want your campaign to be successful?
Read our actionable guide on newsletter referral programs.

If you don’t have time to read the tutorial, you can always watch the video version:

How to build a newsletter referral program with Substack

Integrating Substack with Viral Loops and starting your newsletter referral program couldn’t be easier; there are only three steps:

  1. Create a newsletter referral campaign in Viral Loops.
  2. Add the referral link inside your newsletters.
  3. Import the subscribers from your Viral Loops campaign to your Substack account.

Creating your newsletter referral program.

  1. Create a Viral Loops campaign using The Newsletter Referral template.
  2. Select Substack and then press the “continue” button.

choose substack platform

  1. Name your campaign.
  2. Set up the number of milestones and their corresponding rewards.
  3. Customize your Sharing Page and Subscriber Page.

Syncing your list’s existing subscribers with your referral program.

Your existing Substack subscribers will be able to join your referral campaign from the Sharing Page, and the friends they invite are redirected to the Subscriber Page to join your newsletter.

Substack does not offer any integrations (for the moment), so getting those referred subscribers back in Substack requires some manual work.

We made a little workaround to make your life a bit easier.

In the last step of your campaign’s setup, you can enable the ‘New Subscribers Digest.’

enable new subscriber digest

Once a day, we will send you an email with the new subscribers from the previous day so you can import them to Substack.

We won’t spam.

You will only receive the digest if there are new subscribers.

viral loops new subscribers digest

Once you receive an email with your new subscribers, you can import them into your Substack list.

Add a referral program inside your newsletters.

To add a referral widget inside your Substack newsletters:

  1. Copy the URL of the Sharing Page
  2. Go to your Substack publication.
  3. Create a new post.
  4. Add a new section under the main body of your email.
  5. Add a custom button.
  6. Paste the URL of the Sharing Page.

embed referral in a substack email

Before you go.

That was it!

Starting today, you can embed a referral program inside your Substack newsletters, reward your most loyal subscribers, and build a stronger community with word-of-mouth.

It takes only a few minutes to set up, and you can get your campaign live in minutes.

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