Before I found out how to create an excellent newsletter, I was trying to toss together bits of information that I thought people would find interesting while promoting my services. You can guess that that didn’t work too well. When I looked at the analytics, they showed me that people would open the email newsletters about 60% of the time.
This was a pretty good open rate for me, but when my e-mail captures started to slow down, so did the open rate. Turns out people only opened the first newsletter, and their interest decreased drastically
I thought to myself “Well I just need to increase my e-mail list”, rather than focusing on the actual newsletter. This went on for several weeks.
It took me awhile, but I forced myself to take a critical look at my newsletters. That and having a sit down meeting with the team. I wanted honest feedback, and not just being satisfied that consistent new letters were going out.
1) Is the Content Worth Reading?
You probably think “Yes, or else why would I send it?” We read often that consistency is key to retain your audience. Somewhere along the way of maintaining that consistency, we compromise the quality of the content for quantity. It happens more often than you think.
Consistency is key, I won’t dampen that point. But what’s arguable as or more of a key factor is read-worthy content. Your content you be:
Novel, meaning it should be new. You don’t want to be repeating what others have already said, especially if you’re targeting a specific demographic or niche. Chances are the people you are targeting will be subscribed to similar content, brands, and products. Be at the top of your information, have specific information in regards to what’s happening in YOUR company. It doesn’t always have to be the latest news in an industry, because that type of content is probably being covered by someone bigger.
2) Write for the Audience, Not for Yourself
On the topic of the targeted audience, your content should be tailored to your readers. You’ve researched the e-mails you’ve captured, honed down on the potential customers you want to market too, which means your content marketing should be on the same page.
What you might find personally interesting, might not be as interesting to your distribution list. If they’ve provided their e-mail for your company, they’ve told you they have an interest in your brand. Keep them updated on company news, new products, services, but mostly keep up with their lifestyle. Your content should be 90% educational, and 10% promotional.
Balance is key, with life, with marketing. I remember subscribing to my favourite clothing store, a high-end brand that sold suits. When they sent me my first newsletter I was intrigued. I opened it and read it, but it was only about their latest stock of suits.
I quickly got bored. I would get 1-2 newsletters a day, all promoting sales, and new shipments. I didn’t take me long to unsubscribe. I was initially intrigued but quickly realized that their e-mails were just spam to me. If they had focused more on their company, on fashion style, tips, perhaps insight on how they produced their suits, I would’ve been more likely to still be subscribed. Less is more.
3) Your Headliner Should Be Engaging
Surprise, surprise. If you’re reading this blog, you’ve probably read others that have the same thing. I wouldn’t say it unless I thought it was truly important. But I won’t just say headliners are important and then leave you. Here are some tips.
It should be revealing. It should tell a little bit of what’s inside the newsletter. Catchy, but not click-baity. I like to use the best part of the newsletter for the headliners. Similar to how Youtuber's name their videos. Reveal a bit on what it’s about, not just that it’s a newsletter.
4) Keep it Short, Simple and Sweet
What kind of newsletter is it? Do you have a structure or a theme? Or perhaps it’s a mess of tied together bits of information. The best newsletters are the ones that have a purpose.
Figure out what that purpose is, what kind of information are you providing your readers and you're golden. Keep it to that purpose, don’t go on and on. Your newsletter shouldn’t be a 5-page essay, it should be a quick update that is fun and interesting to read.
If you’re looking for more tips give us a shout! firstname.lastname@example.org