When it comes to connecting with customers and establishing your brand, nothing delivers more bang for your buck than the monthly email newsletter.
Newsletters are a powerful, cost-effective way to engage your audience and establish your business as an expert in your industry.
But what exactly makes for a great newsletter? There are some universal best practices that help make any newsletter a success, and we’ll explore those in this blog.
Include Relevant and Valuable Content
The most important part of any newsletter is the content. You’ll want to include subject matter that’s relevant to your readers and speaks to their interests. The goal is to provide useful information that will keep them engaged and coming back for more.
How do you know what will best serve your readers? In large part, the answer comes down to knowing your audience and how they relate to your brand. What are they interested in, where do they live, what are some challenges they face in their lives?
For instance, if your company sells reusable shopping bags, chances are you’re targeting people who care about the environment. An article about the environmental impact of plastic along with tips on how individuals can make a difference would likely be well received.
Sunflower Natural Foods started sending out photos of sunflowers from around the world with every newsletter beginning in January. Most of their subscribers live in Vermont. January in Vermont can be brutally cold, dark, and dreary – a month when many Vermonters need a reminder of summer. The positive feedback from readers was instantaneous, and the sunflower photos quickly became one of the features Sunflower’s subscribers look forward to the most.
Digital imaging company Canon regularly includes video tutorials for upcoming products and links to register for live product demonstrations in their newsletters. This demonstrates their understanding of their customer’s desire to be informed not only about the latest products but also about the most effective ways to use them.
Use Clear, Consistent Branding
One key benefit of the monthly newsletter is that it helps cement your brand in the reader’s mind. Your newsletter should consistently reflect your brand identity both visually and in its tone.
What’s the best way to ensure your branding is consistent? Keep a Brand Style Guide to reference whenever you create marketing material for any platform.
At a minimum, your brand style guide should include your brand’s logos (with as many combinations of the symbols and text as you can imagine), colors, and fonts. To take it even further, include your brand’s tone and voice, photos and videos, mission and strategies in your brand style guide.
Your newsletter is a wonderful place to let your brand’s personality shine. In addition to our logos and colors, Eternity’s newsletter features marketing articles written by its staff. Our positivity and team-oriented approach is highlighted in the team photo and the “Onward & Upward” sign-off at the end of each newsletter.
Make it Personal
Personalization is a crucial component of a successful email newsletter, and there are many ways to tailor your email to the subscriber.
Include the recipient’s name, if not in the subject line itself then place it in the newsletter itself. Don’t overdo it though – an email that repeats the recipient’s name over and over again is just as awkward as it would be in a spoken conversation.
Segment your subscribers and send them content that is relevant to products they’ve purchased or shown interest in, or even events they’ve attended.
Did someone register for your email after purchasing a bunch of organic fertilizer? Include an article in their newsletter about the benefits of non-gmo food. Did someone opt in for emails at a yoga retreat your resort hosted? An “Asana of the Month” would be a welcome feature for their newsletter.
A word of caution regarding your newsletter (and any other email marketing campaigns): Always respect the customer’s privacy.
Be transparent about the data you collect on them and how it’ll be used to enhance their experience and make sure they consciously opt-in before collecting any data on them.
Make sure you have strong security measures in place to protect your customer data. This cannot be stressed enough – protecting your customer’s information is critical. Some aspects of user privacy are legally required, and user data protection is essential for building and maintaining trust with your customers.
Ready to Start Sending?
Email newsletters are a powerful tool that are sure to help your business establish connections with customers. There are almost endless ways to be creative with your newsletter too, and interacting with customers this way is a ton of fun! If you’d like to talk some more about it or get help building your email campaign, let’s connect – we would love to hear from you!