A comprehensive digital marketing strategy will incorporate email marketing in the form of an email newsletter. An email newsletter will give you a simple way to keep in touch with your customers to let them know what’s happening with your brand, your business, and what’s new in your industry.
The first step is to get yourself some email marketing software (never do your email marketing campaigns through email service providers; Outlook, Gmail etc) so you can easily create, send and track your campaigns. There’s plenty out there, most are on a monthly subscription model with monthly costs increasing based on your database size. Our email marketing software is different in that you’re only charged on the emails you send, and this cost is minimal providing a very, very cost effective alternative. You can also send SMS campaigns and even direct mail through the same software at no extra charge. But enough of the selling….
You also need to create an email list. This is a list of recipients by name and email address. These list members have actively or passively subscribed to your newsletter by giving you their email address at the checkout, point of sale, or another sign-up opportunity. They are willing to receive your email correspondence; just be certain to make it easy for them to unsubscribe if they so wish at a later date.
Once you have taken care of both the above aspects of your email marketing campaign, you need to create your newsletter:
Personalise – a quick and simple win is to use the recipient’s name in the salutation – this makes the newsletter feel more valuable and as if it was written specifically for them. For even greater personalisation, segment your database and tweak a section of your newsletter content to appeal to that segment e.g. you have your database segmented by roles (teacher, doctor etc) and a piece of content within the newsletter directly appeals to that role. It doesn’t have to be the whole newsletter, just a portion within the overall template.
When asked to prioritise one capability that will be most important to marketing in the future, 33% of marketers answered: “personalisation.” – Adage
BE RELEVANT AND INFORMATIVE
Be Relevant and Informative – tell stories that are of high value to the reader and that are compelling. Content needs to be interesting, informative, and evoke emotion of some kind. Include brand or company news, personal interest items, important dates and deadlines, showcase new services or products, and broadcast upcoming sales, contests, etc.
Include an array of the following for interest: blog posts, how-to’s and tips, fun facts, photos, reviews, videos, sneak peeks, infographics, resources, contests, contest winners, and calendar highlights.
According to the Nielsen Norman Group, more than 40 percent of users said that each of the following aspects make for valuable email newsletters:
- Work-related news or company actions (mentioned by two-thirds of users)
- Items about personal interests and hobbies
- Items about events, deadlines, and other important dates
- Reports on prices or sales
DON’T GO THE HARD SELL
Don’t use your email newsletter for the hard sell. Instead, send selling content in separate emails that are promotion-specific. You don’t want to appear pushy when you send your newsletter – it’s the place to instead build customer relationships.
Think of your newsletter as a trusted friend that your reader has let into their “home” (i.e., the inbox). If someone lets you into their home and you instantly transform into a pushy salesman, they’re going to think twice about opening the door for you again. – Vertical Response
Be concise – otherwise people won’t read it! Make your content visually appealing, uncluttered, and easy to scan with subheadings. Invite them to visit your website or blog to learn more in a clear call to action.
The average person spends 51 seconds reading an email newsletter.
Ben & Jerry’s
And here’s an example of a very good email newsletter – okay, it is for ice-cream, and a very cool one at that (pun excused), but you still have to get it right or people will unsubscribe.
It’s very visual and wonderfully concise driving you to click on the links to find out more, which then allows them to build a further segmented database around link clicks and gets people cookied for remarketing purposes.
It has relevant, seasonal content plus informative content with not only fun facts, but some more serious information around discrimination and then some product focused content on how to get the best out of your ice-cream, but no hard sell anywhere. We love it!
You can create beautiful emails just like this within the ClickSend marketing platform, and we’ll help you along the way as much, or as little, as you like.