The Newsletter Journey of The Stakeholder Report

Well, isn’t this fancy, a new blogging platform, a new newsletter platform, and a whole lot of “I have no idea what I’m doing” thoughts running through my head. With that noted, this new CMS (via Sanity) is nice, and I’m glad to give it a try.

Let’s get into the newsletter-ness of the issue for now. I currently run a project management centric newsletter, The Stakeholder Report (TSR), on my PM site, Project Management Five. As I write this, I’m also working on issue number eleven of TSR while trying to clean up my email list of just over 300 subscribers. I’ll get into that in a moment, but first, the adventure to get to this point.

I started writing TSR as part of PM Five around June of this year. I was trying to do a daily news roundup of PM-centric information, however, that didn’t work out as it was too cumbersome to do so, and there wasn’t “real” news every day. So, after about two weeks, I moved to a once a week update that’s morphed into what I have today.

I was first using Ghost as my CMS (self-hosted), and it’s great! However, managing an internal site AND a newsletter become harder than it needed to be on there. And the lack of metrics make it difficult to manage. Honestly, if it wasn’t for the issue with trying to clean up an email list, I’d make Ghost work for me.

I then move over to Substack, which is also a great platform for people starting. They make it super easy to both collect email addresses and to create content. The editor is as easy as using a text editor, just click the buttons for different fonts, photos, etc. It’s stupid easy. However…, their lack of support for everyone to have their own branding via a domain name is a deal-breaker for many. Unless you have a user base in the many-many-thousands, you’re not getting your own domain name. You are stuck with yourname.substack.com. If you don’t care about having your own domain,, then this is a win! If you’re starting there’s no charge for their services unless you’re making money via a subscription.

I moved from Substack to WordPress, where I am now. WordPress doesn’t come without its own issues; but for now, I’m using a plugin (The Newsletter Plugin) to produce the current newsletters. However, I’m not sure if I want to continue down this road… I may move back to Ghost, but I’m still mulling this over, maybe after cleaning my email list.

While I know this isn’t much of an update, it’s where I am now. And it’s also a test of this new CMS via Sanity and Netfly. Bonus, Grammarly works within the editor too.