Whether you’re selling products or information, email marketing is a great way to get your message out. The trick is to get newsletters opened instead of automatically junked or diverted into the spam folder.
An old saying goes… you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.
Or can you?
Can you actually create a newsletter as a marketing tool and ensure it is opened, read, and acted upon?
A newsletter may be a common way of email marketing, but it involves amalgamating several types of marketing, so canny choices can help your chances big time. Let’s look at some tips to make your email newsletter more likely to be opened.
Subject Line is Everything
The first thing seen is the subject of the email. Nobody wants dry and boring; they want to be called to action. Be short concise, and to the point. And for the love of the email newsletter marketing gods, be creative!
As an example, imagine you sell cat products and your newsletter is focusing on catnip. You don’t want a subject line that reads: “Your feline companion is, like most cats, friskier with catnip, but which cut is best?” It will be in the trash faster than Mittens can pounce on a toy. A subject like “Greatest Ideas to Drive YOUR Cat Mad” is snappier.
Focus It Right
Sure, sounds simple. Just remember two important things: (1) no one wants to read a word salad and (2) no one will ever complain that your writing is too simple.
To avoid it appearing congested, unfocused and cluttered, have a common thread running through the newsletter. Don’t merely talk about your company. The less you talk about yourself, the better your chances of nudging a reader to take action. Focus on one thing your company does and make it sound so appealing that recipients have no choice but to look to your company for their needs.
Educate, Don’t Promote
One of the biggest problems with email newsletter marketing is that too many of them come off as advertising.
“You can do this”, “you can do that”, “we’re great because”, “buy this”, and so on. It’s self-serving and can be irritating.
Consumers read a newsletter because it has something of interest to them. They subscribe because of this interest and keep reading because of this interest.
If you want your newsletter opened, read, and acted upon, provide useful content. A how-to section, an op-ed, some other stories… whatever fits into the vertical you’re trying to promote.
A good rule of thumb is to provide 90% actual content with 10% promotion mixed in. If you go more than that, you run the risk of turning off the consumer.
Full Disclosure Works Wonders
Sometimes getting someone to read your email newsletter is as simple as getting your subscriber landing page right. No one wants to subscribe to potential spam. Provide subscribers a short sample of what they’ll find in your newsletter. Give them a detailed list of what to expect, making sure to include:
- how often they will get the newsletter
- a summary of sample headlines, stories, and general content
- a rundown of the categories you’ll include in the newsletter.
Be as specific and open as you can about what your newsletter is and isn’t. This way, when people subscribe, they know exactly what they’re getting.
How does this help you? Well, they won’t bother to sign up unless they have an interest in it, so you won’t be wasting your time. Once you do this, it’s up to you to keep your email newsletter marketing campaign on point.
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