In years past, phone calls from telemarketers during dinner were the ultimate invasion of privacy. While phones are mostly silent now, there are new etiquette rules when it comes to making contact with a client base. E-mail is one of the most effective ways to reach a target audience, but it is also a method that requires proper planning. Users want to protect their e-mail, and actually feel violated when spam infiltrates. Therefore, you need your message to have a purpose; otherwise it will quickly end up in someone’s “trash” folder. To create a useful, well-received newsletter, use the following strategies:
Know your brand voice
E-mail newsletters are an extension of your brand, and they’re the perfect chance to remind people about what your company stands for. Make sure that the messages in any e-mail correspondence correlates with the types of things you’re writing on your website, on your social media platforms, and in marketing materials. If your brand is known for its whimsical, light-hearted approach to the business, a client will feel confused upon reading an e-mail newsletter full of jargon.
Pick the right subject line
Internet users operate quickly, so you only have a matter of seconds to sell the reader on why they should click on your message. The perfect subject line helps to draw a reader in. It should be eye-catching, but also informative. All of the clever puns in the world won’t matter if the reader gets no sense of why the correspondence is worth reading. Get the point across, make it descriptive, and ensure that it reflects the company brand.
Start off strong
Just like any type of reading material, the first sentence counts. Start with an interesting tidbit of information that will leave the person wanting to get more detail.
Make it look professional
No matter how interested your readership is in what you have to say, an e-mail that’s full of jumbled fonts, images that won’t load, and broken links will leave them hitting “delete.” Make sure the formatting of your newsletter is professional and easy on the eyes. Uniformity from one newsletter to the next helps to further your brand identity, so keep the document the same each time you send it out.
Send it regularly
The right newsletter is sent out consistently, but not too frequently. If you disappear for three months but then start sending out two messages a day to make up for your absence, you’ll probably find that most people opt for the “unsubscribe” option.
People like to look at images. Consider the websites you frequent on a daily basis. They’re probably full of useful information as well as photos. Some carefully placed images help to break up the text of the message, thus making it easier to read. Choose your pictures carefully; they should relate to what you’re talking about in the newsletter.
Give it a purpose
Readers want to hear from you when you have something of interest to say. Every weekday, I get the same e-mail from the same company advertising 10 percent off of my order. While this message caught my attention the first time around, after receiving the e-mail daily, I no longer find this deal unique. When you offer a discount to your subscribers, make sure it’s actually a deal worth mentioning. If it’s just one never-ending promotion, they will get tired of seeing it in their inbox. Each newsletter should have a purpose, whether it’s unveiling a new product, promoting a giveaway, or issuing a discount. Customers want to read a newsletter that gives them some type of benefit.
Think about your audience
Just like with the rest of your branding, you’ll need to consider your target audience before firing off your next message. This allows you to more effectively connect with the desired group. If you’re writing a newsletter aimed at young moms, you’ll want to include information that is relevant. Details about children’s toy recalls, new baby food products, and car seat safety are of interest to them; information about retirement packages is probably not.
Keep it brief
Any newsletter author should live by the quote, “Brevity is the soul of wit.” People are busy, especially when they’re scanning through their inboxes in the morning. If you inundate your subscribers with a short novel of a newsletter, they’ll lose interest. However, if you make your correspondence snappy and to the point, they’ll probably open it the next time it arrives.
Include a call to action
In order to make the most out of your mailing, you’ll want to help guide readers to a particular action, whether it’s downloading an e-book or signing up for a new course you’re teaching. This message will make your newsletter worthwhile for both your business and your readers.
Carefully crafted, informative newsletters help to further a customer’s connection with your brand. Include special offers and compelling content in each e-mail and you’ll find yourself with a growing list of interested people.
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