The complete guide to making a successful email newsletter
When your business takes off, you’re going to have a bubble of customers or email contacts who have a genuine interest in either your product, service, blog or website. It is essential that your main aim is to maintain this interest from your contacts, and one of the best ways to create ongoing interaction with customers and readers is through using a high-quality email newsletter.
What is an email newsletter?
In the world of email marketing, an email newsletter is a specific kind of email sound out to all of a company’s clients and customers (who opt into the newsletter), to keep them in the loop with their latest products, new blog posts, social media activity, and any promotional activities whereby the reader can benefit from.
An email newsletter is a vastly popular email marketing strategy, with as many as 77% of all B2B (Business to business) companies currently managing an active email newsletter campaign. Email newsletters come in a variety of themes and formats, and will showcase the latest news for companies.
If it’s a computer retailer, they may update their blog online, posting new laptop reviews and linking their email subscribers in via the email newsletter. Email subscribers can certainly be a monopoly proportion, in terms of the demographics of overall visits to a company’s website.
Repeat customers and regular subscribers will usually be a big portion of a company’s overall website traffic, studies show that around 40% of all Americans are subscribed to an email list and/or newsletter of some kind, this is usually in order to receive regular savings and discounts from their favourite brands.
What style of email newsletter is the best?
The best kind of email newsletter you can use for your business is really subjective, especially based on whatever industry you’re in. In terms of the important aspects, you have to consider some of the following:
- A campaign that allows the reader their own choice for quantity of content per month.
- Don’t focus too intensely on sales pitches (loyal email subscribers are far more likely to buy your products or services regardless, compared to somebody who has just found your website at random)
- Does your brand have a colour, theme or style? This should be incorporated into all of the marketing emails you send, let alone your newsletter campaigns
- Every weekly/fortnightly/monthly newsletter must be of some importance and use to the reader, if you don’t have any new articles, products, services, deals, promotions etc, then your email subscribers are going to be wasting their time clicking through your email newsletters
A perfect email newsletter doesn’t have to be modified and resent every week, if you don’t have enough time to create new content and carry out promotional activities more often, that’s okay. But it is best to make sure that every email newsletter you send out is an enjoyable read, and is going to guarantee a high click-through rate. I know when I see newsletters that I’m hoping for either a discounted sale, or a trending or well researched article post, that is relevant, useful or benefiting to me.
Obviously, those two scenarios are industry specific, and I’m probably more inclined to expect discounts from a fashion retailer, and a well-researched article from perhaps an IT hardware reseller, that is highly subjective, but you get the idea.
The industries with the highest rate of un-subscribers compared to total subscribers are restaurants/catering (0.39%), and health and fitness (0.40%). These figures make it clear that consumer interests change often – You’re probably going to have more people signing up for your health and fitness newsletter in the summer months, as more people look to tone up their summer body.
Restaurants will have a high un-subscriber rate as people generally visit certain restaurants for one time only if a discount is available, and they will probably sign up to the newsletter again, once a new discounted offer comes to light.
How can I make my own email newsletter?
An email newsletter that works effectively can sometimes be a challenging thing to create without inspiration…
Let’s take InVision for example. InVision is a product design platform who make collaborating and creating products with your colleagues far easier. Their newsletters are sent out weekly to their email subscribers, which includes updates about the company, interviews and tips about the design industry, as well as news updates, and most importantly, content that is useful to the reader.
A weekly newsletter appears to be the optimum choice for quantity of content, reports have shown that sending four emails per month as opposed to one big newsletter in a month can significantly increase the proportion of recipients eventually opening your email/s, thus increasing the chances of click-throughs and ultimately, purchases of your products or services.
Ensure you provide plenty of time and opportunity, for your customers who get your other emails, to sign up to your newsletter. This could be in the form of incentives, such as discounts to a premium subscription for your service, or a free welcome pack etc.
Address every subscriber by their name, instead of just a “valued customer” or a “loyal subscriber”, we know that using first names to address the reader in your marketing emails can increase open rates and click-through rates by as much as 35%.
Getting the reader to click through is a great first step, props to you – The biggest challenge for any email newsletter campaign, however, is to maximise the duration your recipients read the newsletter for, or how long they check out your website’s new content for. Let’s take for example, you have posted a new blog which is an instructional piece, and your email newsletter hints to the reader to click-through and check it out, in your email newsletter “preview”, you don’t want to give too much away.
Quality over quantity is the way to go for an email newsletter, try to keep the purpose of the email newsletter short and concise, so it’s a no-brainer that the reader should click through to your website. A good example with online clothing retailers is where they preview a couple of items of clothing on sale, and the call to action is to invite customers to access a special discount on their entire summer range, or something along those lines. There has to be a clear benefit to the reader if they are to click-through to your website from the email newsletter.
The content spanning from your email newsletters has to be relevant too. There are so many companies that publish content on their website which might be incredibly benefiting for the company themselves, but is of no use to the reader. This happens as a result of the newsletter not being relevant, not trending, and not being important enough to sway the reader into opening any click-through links.
Another great thing to ensure, is that your email newsletter’s theme is consistent with the brand of the company, as well as the colour scheme of your website. Don’t go from a bright green newsletter colouring to your website that’s completely red – It’ll confuse the recipient if they are expecting your newsletter, and the colour scheme appears “off”, it could trigger them to consider it as spam, just like the spam emails you receive from people claiming to be Apple or Microsoft for example.
So, with a few tips and tricks from us, now is your chance to build your own email newsletter for your business. You can take confidence knowing that email newsletters almost always get a higher click-through rate than regular marketing emails. If you need inspiration on how to build your ideal email newsletter design, so it can line up with your brand and website, check out this link.
Alternatively, if you want to maximise your retention on click-through and open rates for your next email newsletter campaign, why not download our free call to action (CTA) list, so you can trial and error with multiple phrases and click-through tools, to see which ones work best for your newsletter.
Thanks for reading this post, and we do hope your next email newsletter campaign is highly successful. Please do get in contact with us if you need further expert advice on how to build your email newsletter template and content.