Producing engaging email newsletters: 5 key tips for businesses

As social media platforms rapidly emerge and enable new forms of content, it’s all too easy to forget the humble newsletter! Of course, email communications remain a popular medium for businesses. In fact, as usage is expected to grow by 2-3% in 2022 the future of electronic mail still looks promising! However, unlike personalised ads or special offers, newsletters present an opportunity to really showcase your business and understanding of your sector to your customers.

In this blog, we outline five useful tips to help you produce newsletters that resonate with your audience.

1. Nail the subject line

Mailchimp estimates that consumers only open 21% of emails, so the subject line represents your make-or-break opportunity to convince them to read your newsletter! It’s crucial to make this line interesting or relevant to a problem the reader has. An intriguing (yet not misleading) subject line, such as “How to boost your follower count in just a day”, is more exciting than “January newsletter”. 

2. Create appealing CTAs

Newsletters may not always be sales pitches, but with a strong call to action, you can secure click-throughs and further engagement. 

A simple “click here” or “learn more” is unlikely to entice audiences to visit your website. A strong CTA is one that clearly shows a benefit to the reader – so try to write from their perspective. For instance, “Follow us on Instagram!” doesn’t do much for your audience, as it seems self-serving. Instead, “Receive the latest marketing tips and news by following us on Instagram!” emphasises what the reader gets from engaging with your business. 

3. Get the frequency right

Businesses need to strike a balance to ensure their newsletters aren’t too short or long. To maintain interest, it’s also important to avoid bombarding readers with bi-weekly newsletters – or neglecting them with infrequent ones.

It’s best to avoid sending out newsletters too regularly – such as multiple times a week. However, consumers expect at least one newsletter per month. The frequency you opt for will depend on your business, but it’s important to ensure your newsletters are of high quality and have something valuable to say each time. 

4. Write to educate – not to advertise

A good newsletter should be unmistakably a newsletter, instead of yet another advert in someone’s overflowing inbox. It’s important to remember that the core purpose of a newsletter is to convey useful information that’s relevant to your business

Avoid referencing your products, services, and prices, as this will show readers that there’s more to your company than trying to make a sale. Instead, show a wider awareness of your industry, perhaps by addressing news or trends in your sector or by sharing links to your own blog posts on valuable topics. This is a simple way to demonstrate your expertise in more detail, which can help build trust in your brand. 

This approach doesn’t involve any direct promotions. However, with a well-worded CTA, you can still use your newsletter to generate interest in your products and services. 

5. Don’t call it a newsletter!

To perhaps contradict some of the advice given above, one of the main problems with sending out newsletters is that your customers probably already receive several other newsletters.

So, experiment with what you call your newsletter. For example, call it a “Tip of the Week” email, or a “What’s hot in Social” update. Labelling it as something other than a ‘newsletter’ might make the crucial difference between someone opening it or deleting it.

Tools like MailChimp allow you to take advantage of simple A/B testing. So, follow the advice in our first tip and trial a few emails with different titles. At NSDesign we send regular “Blog Updates” to our email subscribers (using clever automation) as well as more obvious email newsletters, so mix it up and see what gives you the best results!

We hope this blog helps focus your thinking about your newsletters and wider email communications. For more digital marketing advice, talk to our expert team!

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