An email newsletter has long been a great way to promote your business. It’s quick to create and is a free marketing strategy. If you haven’t created a newsletter for your business, it’s time to consider starting one.
A series of email newsletters can be a strategic long term marketing move. You want to connect with your subscribers at least 12 times. Eighty percent of paying subscribers will make their purchase between the 5th and 12th contact. Although you are not likely to win a lot of clients through emails alone, these messages can keep your client engaged and eventually become paying customers.
The Purpose of a Good Email Newsletter
When deciding on a newsletter topic, there are a few important things to consider: your target audience, your intended purpose, the content, designing with mobile devices in mind and an attention grabbing subject line.
We’re going to give you a step-by-step breakdown of exactly how to create your own email newsletter.
So, what can a newsletter do for you and your business?
- Connect you with potential clients
- Establish you as a leader or expert in your field
- Build trust in you and your business
- Build brand awareness
- Determine consumer needs and interests
- Increase traffic to a designated site
- Generate more sales
Now, how can you accomplish those outcomes with your email newsletter?
- Provide relevant news, tips, and information
- Publicize events
- Promote products and services
- Make special offers
- Cross-promote partners and business contacts
How to Create Your Email Newsletter
Now that you know the success that can be gained through newsletters, here is a step-by-step guide of how you can make your own for your business.
Step #1: Establish Your Newsletter Goal
First you need to determine the main goal of the newsletter. Ask yourself how it fits into your current marketing strategy.
You may want to announce your company’s launch or promote a new line of products. Whatever your goal may be, keep it in mind as you create your newsletter.
Once you decide on your goal, the next move is to plan your content.
Step #2: Define the Content
Emails should be one of two things: Educational or Entertaining. Or a combination of both!
A couple years ago I was working with the owner of a printing business. He had mastered creating outstanding content while making it very interesting. He was able to achieve a 60% open rate for his email newsletters, which is impressive!
Make sure your content is useful and relevant for your intended audience. Don’t always focus on selling something. By offering helpful & engaging material you will build trust with your clients. You don’t have to create brand new copy each time. Re-purpose existing content from your blogs, articles, and marketing brochures.
Think about how often you want to send out your newsletter and its ideal length. Next, you’ll want to create an outline to follow for each release after it.
Step #3: Layout a Template For Your Email Newsletter
You can use an email service provider’s template but we recommend you create it to reflect your brand’s look-and-feel. This helps establish your brand and your potential customers will quickly recognize that it comes from your company.
Next is the format.
Pick from this optional list of formatting elements and characteristics:
- Text (fonts, colors, sizes)
- Layout (length, margins, justification)
- Highlighting (bold, italics)
- Imagery (logo, photos, cartoons)
- Lists (bullets, numbers)
- Repeatable section titles
- Links (to landing pages, videos, web sites)
Again, remember to let your brand’s look and feel drive the design of your newsletter.
Very important > your email template must be mobile-friendly.
Once you have the format down, start gathering your content.
Step #4: Add Your Body Content
Using your template as your outline, start filling in your text and images. Size images or artwork so that it doesn’t overtake the size of the text.
Ask for feedback of your newsletter draft to few trusted people. Ask them to give honest feedback, including pointing out typos, poor grammar, and factual errors. You could follow up with a short of list of questions such as:
- Did you enjoy or appreciate the content?
- Was it professional?
- Did you learn something?
- Was it too long or too short?
- Would you like to continue receiving it?
- What part of it did you find most valuable or interesting?
Step #5: Create a Powerful Subject Line For Your Email Newsletter
One of the most challenging parts about an email newsletter is deciding the subject line. It should be compelling, relevant & click-worthy. Subject lines need to express the idea without telling everything while compelling the reader to want to see what’s inside.
A few questions to ask for the all-important subject line in an email newsletter:
Is it attention-grabbing?
Does it relate to the email recipient’s needs or interests?
Will it help them solve a challenge?
Will it spark their curiosity?
Does it match the email content?
Is it a mobile-friendly length of under 40 words?
Can we personalize it by including their name?
Is the spelling, grammar, and punctuation correct?
Did I avoid using CAPS or special characters (!!!)?
Try eye-catching words and phrases such as: sneak peak, secret, hidden, solution, little-known, exciting, must know, avoid these mistakes; free, clearance, and discount always get my attention. Avoid click-bate language. Whatever you do, don’t let your subject be unspecific or boring.
Test out your subject lines to make sure they don’t land in the recipients’ SPAM folder. “Free” can sometimes trigger a spam filter.
Practice Makes Perfect With Creating Newsletters
Over time, you’ll learn what is and is not working with your email list.
NOTE: Don’t forget to keep it legal. By law you are required to include an “unsubscribe” option in each email, along with your contact information.
Once you have created your educational and entertaining email newsletter and gathered your intended recipients, you just need to send it. However, your work doesn’t stop there. Make sure to analyze the results. By tracking open rates, click rates, etc., you’ll learn how you can improve next time.
What email newsletters worked for your business? Do you have advice you would like to share with other business owners? Reply in the comments below.