A blogging asset, newsletters are favoured by most bloggers, digital marketers and brands these days. Newsletters carry the power of attracting and retaining the audience for the long term and therefore acing this strategy is essential. A good newsletter works as a communication tool between the reader, customer, contractors and you.
Having newsletters is a one-step forward towards success, therefore as a content writer, your focus should be on including relevant content that attracts visitors and helps build a long-term relationship with them. The crucial points that one should keep in mind when reading about newsletters are:
- Having an aim to achieve
- Developing an effective strategy
- Ensuring consistency
- Framing and Implementing an actionable plan
Once you are clear with these steps, later you have to work towards analyzing and optimizing your newsletters for the success of it.
If you want to drive your sales by generating quality leads, having newsletters is a great strategy for the same. Continue reading this article further to know about the purpose of having a newsletter for your brand, what are the essential steps to form it and the most effective strategies for its execution.
What is A Newsletter?
Often used by bloggers or marketing professionals, newsletters are printed or digital reports that are regularly delivered to subscribers or people who have shown keen interest in.
Bloggers and professionals use this tool to build value by delivering high-quality content to their audiences. In comparison to the blog articles, newsletters are detailed, data and examples driven, and contain actionable content. Similar to a social media feed, e-newsletters contain content in a vertical column format to optimize on the readability of the text.
A newsletter is used to communicate directly and regularly with the subscribers. Started with an aim to deliver information to the relevant audience, these reports contain in-depth text and images, often related to news, topics, updates, etc. that helps keep the audience engaged.
It is mostly sent in an email, as an attachment to the emails or as a link that redirects the subscriber to a relevant page. It is basically a long-term service of valuable content that interests the reader and helps build relationships with them.
In these times, it is a tool used to push conversions and promote businesses. It is considered as one of the main tools of email marketing that is used to build a contact list. When used correctly, it helps generate better results and reduce the cost for businesses.
Why are Newsletters Needed?
Newsletter as a tool for people who have a website, blog, or e-commerce site. It can be used to advertise a product or service, provide content or articles, give updates, talk about an event, or to remarket a campaign.
Known as permission-based promotional messages, newsletters help acquire and retain an audience. For any blogger looking to monetize their blog or businesses wanting to build a contact list, this is one of the best tools. Apart from sharing valuable content, it helps in building brand awareness, nurturing relationships and generating leads.
A tool that reaps a huge return on investment, the purpose of newsletter campaigns in general can be to:
- Keep regular contact
- Increased traffic to your blog/website
- Higher brand awareness and brand recognition
- More sales
- Improved promotion of social media profiles
- Create visiting habits with various content
- Form strong and long-term customer relationships
- Enhanced ROI
Newsletters carry less risk as a strategy, therefore, it is better to experiment with it to maximize the results. As a brand, you have to find your way out to leverage more benefits from this tool.
Are Newsletters An Effective Marketing Tool For Businesses?
When it comes to digital marketing, having newsletters are your email marketing campaigns is important for businesses. It helps businesses personalize communication with their customers. You can give an update about your business, product/service, or provide educational content about the niche that you are operating in.
Newsletters carry a call-to-action, it could be asking them to go and read a blog post, making a purchase. The ultimate goal for businesses is to generate leads and get conversions. According to Mckinsey, email marketing is a better technique to acquire customers compared to social media marketing.
Having is an email list is better and safer than counting on followers for brands. As the chance of losing access to followers is higher and an email list is something that you own. You can easily track your prospects and account for their level of interest in this method.
An old and a popular form of marketing, email marketing is used by nearly 70% of the businesses. Here is how and why businesses use newsletters:
- Greater coverage as everyone on the internet uses emails. If used smartly, your newsletters can cover a significant space in their inboxes. A good method to get more attention in a short span of time.
- Higher effectiveness as email marketing yields a better return on investment. Help engage an audience and play a vital role in the success of the brands.
- Personalized emails to appeal to the audience leads to greater chances of lead conversions. Helps cater to the needs and expectations of the audience.
- Helps build credibility and establish yourself as an authority in your niche. You can talk about the current trends, news, updates and certain heavy topics related to your industry in the newsletters for better understanding of the readers and to gain their trust.
- Unique and genuine content helps cut through the competition and stand out as a brand. The more and better content you give to your audience, it will reap better results. A good channel to build long-lasting relationships.
Other numerous benefits of an impressive email marketing campaign for brands include:
- Quick response rate
- Faster implementation compared to traditional methods
- Improved SEO
- Easy communication tool
- A good way to test a variety of marketing content
For all businesses, email marketing campaigns are scalable, i.e. you can start with a small list and a single message and move on to increasing content for a long contact list. As said, the strategy carries minimal risk and gives greater benefits.
Steps To Writing A Perfect Newsletter
Our inboxes are filled with thousands of emails every day. To ensure that your newsletter is opened and read, and does not end up in spam, it is essential that you have a unique message and that begins with a clear purpose in mind. You only have a few seconds to grab the attention of the user and to make your campaign successful. Hence, it is critical to follow the steps to curating a perfect newsletter.
1. Determine the specifics of your newsletter
As Stephen Covey says ‘Begin with the end in mind’. Before you begin on any journey, ensure that you know what you want to achieve out the campaign, only then will you be able to move in the right direction. Apart from knowing the overall aim of your strategy, you should figure out the goals of every newsletter that you want to send in the year.
Each newsletter can follow a different theme and go out with a different goal that aligns with the purpose of your overall strategy. The content or the specifics of each of your newsletter will also vary with the theme. As a marketer or a blogger, these are the few questions that you should address before you start with your planning:
- What do you wish to achieve out of this specific newsletter?
- What are the resources needed and in hand to implement this campaign?
- What is the target audience?
- What is the call-to-action that you want to focus on?
- What is it that you are addressing as a brand – sales or education?
Defining the specifics and creating the content will get easy and quick once you figure out the answers to these questions. Content created by keeping in mind the answers will appeal more to the target audience due to high relevancy.
2. Outline valuable content
Most of the audience subscribe to the newsletter with an educational purpose. People want to gain more knowledge, know of the updates and be aware of the current trends, and therefore they show loyalty to you.
Create content by keeping in mind the audience. Consistently only sending about sales messages or promotional content will hamper your chances of a long-term relationship. For better sales and seeing the larger picture, informing them about your products and offers is essential, but ensure that it is not the primary focus on your newsletter.
The idea is to maintain the right proportion of education and promotional content in your newsletter. If you are just getting started with the campaign, balance it will 90% educational and 10% promotional content. Later on, as you build a more enhanced email list, you can change the ratio. For now, focusing on relevant, valuable, and unique content that is regularly sent to the subscribers is crucial.
3. Add a primary call to action
Newsletters are a mix of various informative pieces, and therefore you would want to include multiple calls-to-action (CTAs) in it. Do not give in to the temptation to include many CTAs if you want effective results. Not every CTA in your newsletter should get equal focus on importance.
CTA is any action that you want to readers to take once they go through your content, it could be to read a blog post, forward an email, fill a survey, make a purchase or anything else. Keep a primary CTA that you want your subscribers to do and aligns with your purpose. The other CTAs in your newsletters can be optional and only done if the subscribers can time and interest.
4. Include optimized images
Newsletters can be seen as overloading of information and might not appeal to the audience if the visuals are not considered. Adding good and relevant images to your well-written content will up the game of your newsletters and make them more interesting for the readers.
The idea is to add images that align with your content and not just for the sake of it. Add infographics, charts, graphs, etc. to make it visually more appealing. High-resolution images with added Alt-text is recommended to use as the readers get an idea of what you are trying to present.
Your newsletters should be simple and easy to consume for the readers. A complicated design is not appreciated, ensure to keep needed space within your content to make your newsletter visually interesting and to increase its readability for the subscribers.
5. Know the best time to send your newsletter
A primary reason for increased users unsubscribing is them getting too many frequent emails from you. Hence, you should thoroughly plan your email newsletters to not scare the subscribers away. Maintaining consistency is important, but ensure to not overdo it. Create an email marketing campaign to have a clear idea of how you want to take this campaign forward.
You can gain an idea from your subscribers too on how often would they want to receive the newsletters by asking them about the frequency in the subscription form itself. Another method to figure it out is by understanding the schedules of your target audience by knowing their wake up and sleep time, daily habits, working time, etc.
The chances of high open rates are increased if you send the newsletters on a perfect time. Otherwise, your newsletter will just end up in the pile of emails. You want to be relevant and not just create the content for the sake of it.
Curating a perfect newsletter
What is an ideal structure to an email newsletter?
You can use an existing template that is available online or create one by yourself. These are the basic components of a newsletter that one should have.
- Subject Line
- Sender’s name
- Unsubscribe link
Apart from these elements, give your newsletter a more personalized feel for the readers.
On the basis of the information that we have gained above, when drafting a newsletter, these are the points that one should keep in mind:
- Include a variety of topics
- Personalize newsletters for your audience
- Provide valuable content
- Keep information up to date
- Focus on one niche
- Offer exclusivity
- Have a simple design
- Add relevant images
- Perfect your timing
While once you have drafted a newsletter and executed the campaign, analysing it is really crucial to determine its effectivity.
Measuring the success of your newsletter
To know the success of your newsletters, you must have a good plan to analyze it. For any campaign, testing out what is working and not working in your favour gives you an overview of what you can improve or leverage on. There are various email marketing platforms that present various metrics to evaluate your effectiveness.
To get border view of your success, know the:
- Open rates of your emails
- Number of clicks for the links within the newsletters
- Count of people who is unsubscribing from your list
Evaluate these statistics after sending out each newsletter. It will help you in knowing the areas which you can work on or optimize the ones which are paying off. Ensure to take relevant steps for the specific areas in which you are not performing well to achieve success.
Having an email list is critical for a brand. Regular contact with your audience helps build trust and long-term relationships. Post that you can push them to take the desired action. Follow the above mentioned steps to build your loyal audience.
Know that only a newsletter with valuable content and relevant details can make your strategy successful. Delivering value is easy with effective planning, quality content and perfect timing.