I screamed (in my head) when I read this lead to an article recently:
Do you have the phrase “sign up for my newsletter” anywhere on your website? Whatever you do, do not put “sign up for my newsletter” on your website. The last thing people want to do is sign up for another newsletter.The article was about building your contact list and I don't disagree with some of the tactics. I really disagree with this premise above. That last line is so NOT TRUE.
I bet that you are subscribed to several newsletters that you remain subscribed to because you get some kind of value. And you'll end your subscription when you stop getting value.
How do you feel when you sign up for one thing and get another?
If it's a newsletter, call it a newsletter. Tell them what they will get and how often. If you try to disguise it, people may be suspicious - and perhaps imagine something worse than what you're offering.
Think about it. Why would someone require my email address in order to give me a free download? We all get that, right? That they plan to do something with our email addresses?
You're not publishing a newsletter for the open rate. You're doing a newsletter because you want people to read it and connect with you. You want subscribers who are likely to do just that. I think that in this increasingly suspicious online world, being straightforward and authentic will stand out.