07 Dec Creating an E-Newsletter People Actually Read
Are you thinking of creating an E-newsletter? Before you go diving in at the deep end, check out this article for some hints and tips on how to maximize productivity and responsiveness.
As with all marketing, research needs to be conducted to assess whether sending E-newsletters is appropriate and worthwhile in your industry.
You can start by looking at influencers in your industry to determine if there are any existing E-newsletters that people subscribe to. Analyze the content and tone and make an informed decision on whether E-newsletters are the appropriate form of communication between you and your target audience.
When it comes to health care, the Mayo Clinic is an excellent source of information and regularly sends meaningful, well-timed messages to its subscribers, click here for an example.
Take some time to re-examine your goals
Are you trying to increase the number of leads? Better qualify leads to speak with salespeople? Gain more clients? Retain more customers? Boost page traffic?
If your industry isn’t really interested in email newsletters, or if your goals don’t align with what a newsletter can accomplish, your time might be better spent creating something else like a lead generating campaign or a blog article. Gather some data, create a strategy, and discuss your options with your marketing team.
Figure out what kind of newsletter you want to send
A common problem that often arises with E-newsletters is that they’re often cluttered and obscure due to the fact that they are promoting every surface of your business. Product news mixed in with PR stories, blog posts and events can be overwhelming. Newsletters should have a common thread to blend all information seamlessly.
A way to help reduce haphazardness of an email newsletter is by keeping it to a specific topic, instead of it being about your company in general, try dedicating it to one theme or motive.
An example of a topic-based newsletter could be Mayo Clinic’s Cardiovascular Physician Update that is published bi-monthly. Although the Mayo Clinic writes about every medical topic documented, they offer a specific newsletter for people who want to stay up to date on Cardiovascular Physicians. This is called a niche, a topic aligned with a specific interest, so the articles have an opportunity to get more engagement than they would in a newsletter featuring content from all over their website.
Provide balance to your content
Odds are, your E-newsletter subscribers may not want to hear about everything you have to say, 100% of the time. While they may appreciate you and want to hear from you, there is only so much before you’re tuned out, or the dreaded unsubscribe button is clicked!
Try to balance your content with informative and promotional content. Try not to be the company focusing solely on self promotion. Try implementing educational, relevant and timely information.
Once you have figured out your newsletter’s focus and content balance, make sure you’re properly advertising their existence on your landing page. More importantly, get specific. Tell the potential subscribers exactly what will be in the newsletter as well as how often they can expect to hear from you. A suggestion, could be to provide a preview link of past newsletter so they can get an idea of what you’re producing.
Get Creative with Subject Lines
Even if your subscribers sign up for your emails, there is no guarantee that they will open your emails once they get them. Several marketers try increasing familiarity with their subscribers by keeping the subject line the same each day, week or month that they send it. Let’s be honest, those subject lines get old for subscribers, and fast. Usually there are no incentives from the subject line to click on that specific email, right that moment.
If you need some assistance with your email newsletter subject lines, check this out.
Part of what makes a newsletter is that you’re featuring multiple pieces of content with multiple calls-to-action (CTA). However, that doesn’t mean that you should let those CTA’s share equal prominence. Instead, let there be one top CTA, the main focal point that you would like your subscribers to participate in. Other CTA’s should be “incase you have time” options, whether it’s to click through or to see a blog post or just to forward the email to a friend, make it simple for your audience to know what you want them to do.
Keep Design and Copy Simple
A newsletter can easily get overwhelming and cluttered. The trick for email marketers to remain organized revolves around two things: concise copy and enough white space in the design.
Concise copy is vital; subscribers will lose interest within sixty seconds. The aim is to send your reader to your blog or website so that they are able to consume the content as a whole. Concise copy gives your subscribers a taste of your content, just enough that they want to reach out and learn more.
Don’t Make It Hard for People to Unsubscribe
It seems counter-intuitive, but it is important if you want to maintain an active, engaged subscriber list. Don’t use strange language like, “Edit your communication with us” and please don’t hide an unsubscribe or make it difficult to locate. Besides keeping your list healthy, having a clear unsubscribe protocol will help ensure your email is not marked as spam before it hits the rest of your list’s inbox.
In order to find out what works for your company and your email list A/B tests can be conducted to compare the effectiveness of two different styles of e-newsletter.
A/B split testing allows you to create two versions of your email and split your email list into two random test groups and the rest of the audience who will receive the winning version of your email. Each test group is sent a different version of the same email. An example, could be the same email content sent out to both groups but with contrasting subject lines. Opens and clicks are used to decipher which of the test elements are the most effective and the winner is sent to the remainder of the audience.
ClickMD Marketing is an agency specializing in the medical industry. Contact us today for more information on how we can help. Your patients are only one click away!