Do you have a newsletter yet? If not, you’re missing out on one of the simplest way to generate more leads. Make sure you put a newsletter sign up in every possible place that makes sense on your website.
With these newsletter, not only do you have a captive audience (people have to opt-in to your newsletter) but email pathways are a great way to avoid getting lost in all the Internet noise. Don’t make it all about you. Instead, share with your contacts your insights, recent wins you created for your customers and industry news.
5 Reasons Why You Need an Email Newsletter
- Email newsletters drive sales – When a recipient views your email, you’ve got the opportunity to highlight a product, explain the benefits, and connect them to a point of sale in moments
- You can connect with your customers – Customers want to connect to the businesses and brands they like. Connecting to your customers in person is a matter of being personable, presentable, and professional—and that’s easy to do via email as well. Your newsletter can provide great value, beyond sales, by informing your customers with interesting content that resonates with them.
- You can boost your social media following – According to a recent blog post from Salesforce, emails that include social sharing buttons have a 158 percent higher click-through rate. Social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ are integral to your overall marketing and growth strategies.
- You can increase traffic to your website – If you want people to visit your website, it’s simply not enough to hope that your customers will gravitate to your site organically. Your email newsletter plays an active role in site traffic and sales.
- Creating an email newsletter is easier than you think – Selecting a single (and simple) goal for your newsletter means it’s easy to build and stay on schedule, and you avoid sinking too much time into it. Single-topic emails are also easy for readers to digest and keep up with, whether your goal is monthly, weekly, or daily sending.
7 Golden Steps to Creating an Effective Email Newsletter
- Be informative – Being informative and relevant is the end-all, be-all in the newsletter realm. Telling useful and/or compelling stories is also how we catch up with friends. If your email looks like a newsletter, but isn’t full of valuable, interesting, educational content, then it isn’t really a newsletter, nor is it a very good friend. But what do people consider valuable content?
According to the Nielsen Norman Group, more than 40% of users said that each of the following aspects make for valuable email newsletters:
* Informs of work-related news or company actions (mentioned by 2/3 of users)
* Informs about personal interests/hobbies
* Informs about events/deadlines/important dates
* Reports prices/sales
- Lose the (sales) hype – People like to be informed of sales, but selling shouldn’t be the main focus of an email newsletter – send your offers in promo-specific emails. Think of your newsletter as a trusted friend that your reader has let into their home/inbox. If someone lets you into their home and you instantly transform into a pushy salesman with a pitch, they’re going to think twice about opening the door for you (i.e., opening your newsletter) again.
- Keep it brief & aim for a click – Guess how long the average person spends reading a newsletter? 51 seconds! Don’t let that get you down though – attention spans are spread thin. Keeping your content scannable with content blocks, brief blurbs, snapshots, takeaways and/or bullet points and including call-to-action buttons will give your readers’ eyes a scanning sigh of relief. But remember, friendship is give and take, and you deserve something too! Satisfy your readers with just enough info, but leave them eager to learn more. Lead readers back to your site/blog/social media network for more info. The point of a newsletter isn’t to make a sale, it’s to build a relationship with your audience, to inform/educate, and snag some clicks … which, with any luck, will eventually lead to a sale.
- Be reliable and consistent – Flaky friends – We have them, love them, but they’re unreliable, unpredictable, and the more they flake, the less likely we look to them for friendship. The same goes for your newsletter. If you tell readers to look for your newsletter each week, you better be there.
- Have a compelling opening line – First impressions are important for establishing any type of relationship, professional or personal. How you introduce yourself to someone can either pique or fizzle his or her interest in continuing a conversation. The same goes for your email newsletter’s subject line. If the subject line isn’t compelling, interesting, intriguing, thought provoking, etc. your reader may not make it past “Hello.”
- Respond – Nothing’s worse than talking to a friend who clearly isn’t listening – You ask a question and all you get are crickets. Using a “do not reply” email address when sending out a newsletter indicates to recipients that any responses will not be seen or answered. Allowing customers to reply to your email newsletter, and responding to those inquiries or comments lets your readers know a friend listening on the other end.
- Let them opt-out easily – Break ups are rough, but would you rather someone break up with you calmly, or unknowingly throw you under a bus? A person unsubscribing from your newsletter is just a fact of life, and it’s nothing to take personally. However, the harder you make it for someone to unsubscribe, the easier it allows them to click that seemingly insignificant “spam” button, and under the bus you go.
If you are reading this hopefully you received our first newsletter using the above guidelines. We would love to have your feedback. Did we manage to hit the mark, could we have done anything better?
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