If you want to stay connected to your readers one of the best ways is to build a subscriber list so that you can send them new posts and link them back to your site. To do this you need a subscription form on your page and this will require an outside service to provide the sign up form and manage the lists and launch emails. A couple of the more popular ones are Aweber and Mail Chimp. Aweber is a more robust option but it has a monthly subscription cost while the basic Mail Chimp service is free if you have less than 2,000 subscribers.
In the interest of controlling my overhead costs I have opted for the Mail Chimp Service. It is free and easy to sign up on their website and they walk you through the process of setting up a list or lists and where the email notifications will go and so forth. They have some tutorials but it seemed pretty straight forward and I created the basic sign up form without using any tutorials. I may revisit this later and see if I can make a more customized form.
The next step is to go to wordpress.org and search for the Mail Chimp List Subscribe form (http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/mailchimp/installation/). On this page there are instructions as well as a button to download the plug-in. Follow the directions and download the plug-in then go to the plug-in area of WordPress and import the plug-in. You will need an API key from Mail Chimp which you can get by going to the account area in Mail Chimp and selecting the API key option. WordPress will want this when you activate the plug-in. Once the plug-in has been activated you can select it from the plug-in list and go into settings and get it set up. I did not change much except to turn of the monkey points option because I did not want the form to advertise Mail Chimp and I changed a border color to better match my website and the width of the border. In about a half hour I had a sign up form on my website with absolutely no expense.