You send a regular eNewsletter, but are you getting results? Read this post to find out how to increase the return on your investment in time and money on your newsletter.
1. Set clear objectives for your eLetter
What do you want to accomplish with your eLetter? You can achieve many different objectives with an email newsletter. Provide news about your company and employees? Educate your customers about your products and services? Add value for your readers by providing business how-to’s? Add value with personal how-to’s such as stress management, leadership, time management and/or health tips? Build a relationship with your customers?
2. Know how your audience reads email
More people read their email on smartphones and mobile devices. While eLetters can give you an opportunity to provide snippets of articles with a link to read more on your website, your readers may not want to do the extra work to click through and wait for the article to load. The article abstracts or snippets allow you to keep the email brief and drive traffic to your website (and clearly track what people read and how long they spend on your site), but if they don’t click through you may need to provide entire articles in the email. Getting your audience to read the articles may be more important than driving traffic to your site.
3. Keep it short and “scan-able”
Not everyone has time to read, so if you put full articles in the email, keep them as brief as possible. Use a table of contents so that people can scan easily. Use bullet lists and bold font to highlight key points. Make sure the eLetter provider you use makes email “responsive,” which means the email is adjusted depending on what mobile device is used to view it.
4. Include calls to action
You don’t want your eNewsletter to just be a sales pitch, but if you’re adding value with helpful articles and information, you should still include some calls to action. You can be subtle about these and just invite readers to “learn more,” “get more information,” and link to a nice landing page that asks them to fill out a brief form and clearly states what they will get (a phone call, an email, access to download something, etc.)
5. Know what your audience needs and wants
The more you understand your customers and prospective customers, the better you’ll be able to fit newsletter content to what they need. Write to your readers as well as to your objectives. Watch what your readers read and click through to take action. Creative and entertaining writing helps with engagement.
6. Use creative and compelling subject line, visuals, and headlines
Grab your readers attention with a creative subject line. Then include great images and interesting headlines to help them navigate to what they want to read.
7. Find out the best time to send your eNewsletter
You may know or you can analyze over time the best day and time to send your eNewsletter. Try some different options and watch the open and click-through rate. It used to be that Tuesday – Wednesday – Thursday were best days because Monday email was overwhelming and people didn’t have long attention spans on Fridays. At one time Sundays became a key day for people to check email and inboxes weren’t full since not many business sent Sunday emails. Now with many people reading emails on weekends and at night, there are more opportunities for timing your email right.
It’s a good idea to survey your email audience to find out what will work best for them. Short of that, make sure you use your email analytics to gain intelligence on popular subjects, best days and times to send email, click through rates and more.
I hope this post helps you increase the results you get from your email newsletter, whether the results you want are website traffic, reader engagement, lead generation or even sales. You might also want to read my recent post, 5 Ways to Systematize Your eNewsletter Production Process.
Do you need help getting a email newsletter or other marketing started the right way? Contact New Incite today. We’ve helped hundreds of businesses improve marketing through strategic planning and creative execution.