I Built a Newsletter for Thrift Books to Help Boost Lead Engagement

Image from MapMyCustomers

Last week, I was looking at Thrift Books, a used book service that I’ve followed for the past few years, and noticed that they didn’t have a newsletter or any sort of funnel in place to capture and nurture website leads. This was surprising to me as many online bookstores use newsletters to boost lead engagement. 

Having a newsletter is beneficial for a company because it can draw customers and help a company keep track of the people visiting their site. This is also another way for a business to market products. By sending emails with their new deals and products they can gain valuable sales. I decided to take it upon myself to create a newsletter for Thrift Books so they could reach more people and increase sales. 

Using Mailchimp 

I decided to use Mailchimp to build my newsletter. Mailchimp is an easy and quick tool to use. They have easy templates and you can create anything from a simple email to a landing page. Since it is so easy to use I could focus more on my content and not have to spend so much time on my designs. If I wanted to make more elaborate designs Mailchimp still has the capability. This gave me flexibility on my designs. 

I also made a pop-up using Mailchimp. In my mind, this is the best way to get someone to sign up for a newsletter. A pop-up will appear right as someone visits a site. A person’s eye is immediately drawn to it and will be more likely to sign up. This is also easier to see than say an email signup at the bottom of the page. The customer doesn’t have to go searching for the newsletter they are told right away. 

Another draw for the newsletter is giving a discount. I decided a discount would be the best way to get people to sign up. When there is an incentive like a discount the customer will be more likely to sign up. Then they can receive other emails that will maybe make them a repeat customer. 


This is the pop-up I designed using Mailchimp.

After they subscribed this message would pop up.

Test Emails

I created some test emails. These are examples of emails people would receive depending on what they asked for. 

Just Subscribed 

They would receive this email right after they subscribed.


This email has the discount as the lead magnet. They most likely subscribed for the discount. I put that first so they know they got what they asked for. Then I tell them about everything they can get out of the newsletter. I let them know that they can change their preferences so they can only get the emails they want. 

This shows the newsletter is about the customer. I end with the company values to let them know what Thrift Books stands for. The end of the email has the unsubscribe button letting them know they can unsubscribe at any time. 

Secondary Day subscription email 

This email would be sent the next day after they subscribed.


This email is just to follow up. I remind them they still have a coupon and books are great gifts. I mention gifts and books. This will get them thinking about shopping for gifts and keep Thrift Books in mind. 

Book List Email

This is an example of a book list email. I used loom to show the email. When you click on the link it takes you to Thrift Books website to where you can purchase it.


This email is for a newsletter subscriber that is interested in fantasy and sci-fi books. There would be a tailored email for every book genre that would be sent to the newsletter subscribers. If someone was interested in romance they would be sent a romance list, if someone was interested in teen fiction they would be sent a list about teen fiction, and so on. This helps the subscriber find a new read and potentially gets us business since I’m linking directly to our site. 

Email Survey 

This is a survey I would send someone after they purchased something.

   This is the message they will receive when they complete the survey, 


This survey email is to help get feedback on our website and customer service. Consistently improving the website helps customers navigate it and buy more things. Offering another coupon is an incentive to take the survey. 

Sending any sort of thank you can surprise a customer. Not everyone sends you a thank you email after you purchase something from them. The customer will remember that and be more likely to purchase from us again. 

Survey Completion Email 

When they complete the survey they will also be sent an email.


This is a follow-through email. Send them the coupon so they keep coming back.

Why All of This is Valuable

Thrift Books didn’t have a lead magnet. Why is this important and valuable for their business? Having a newsletter/a way to acquire leads is important for growth. When you have a way to communicate with your customers and follow up with them it makes their experience better. 

Different emails draw people to your content. Discounts, follow-ups, and book lists are all related to Thrift Books content. When someone receives these emails they are understanding more and more what Thrift Books is all about. When they receive a book list they know that someone spent time putting the list together. They can trust that the person knows what they are talking about. Adding Thrift Books’ mission and values to an email helps someone know what we are trying to accomplish. 

What I Learned

This was an amazing project. It really took me out of my comfort zone and stretched my skills. I learned how to use Mailchimp and I feel much more confident then when I started. Using emails to draw customers was a new thing but I created some great emails. Overall this was a great project that I really enjoyed. I will definitely be using my new email skills in the future. 

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