The famous adage from The Wizard of Oz, “Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain” does not apply to our thousands of SEOversite newsletter readers. Behold, as we look past the smoke and mirrors to unveil ten e-newsletter best practices for businesses working to create effective email blasts. E-newsletters can be a time-consuming drag with limited results for most businesses. Yet others have proven they can be a marvelous tool in a business’s repertoire for establishing brand voice, creating valuable content for your website, promoting news and events within the organization, selling products and services, and staying on the radar of your valued clientele. Read on for 10 tips to help you master e-newsletter marketing…
Email Blast Must Be Consistent
- e-Newsletters should be a reliable and consistent piece of your marketing plan. Make sure if you are providing a monthly newsletter it is actually monthly and not weekly or bi-annually. If you can only commit to a quarterly newsletter, promote it as such. If you are not in e-commerce, there is a high degree of likelihood that sending multiple emails per week or day will create numbness in your readership, less engagement, and more deletes and unsubscribes.
Check Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself
- Whether you are in the rubber ducky business or a top Dermatology practice, newsletters provide you with a platform to promote specials, new products and services, events, industry trends, address common obstacles before they come up, and continue to build your brand. The problem comes when we try to consolidate all of that information in one email. A confused mind not only says “no,” it clicks delete, and unsubscribes. Think about what you are trying to accomplish with your newsletter and narrow the scope to one key topic and ideally one call to action. Doing so will help your customers focus on your message.
- Most email marketing programs come with cool template functions. Make your life easier and your newsletters more effective by creating one simple and easy to read template. Separate the article from hot news and specials to help customers navigate. Since a large amount of your subscribers will be reading the e-newsletter on their phone or tablet, make sure the template seamlessly transitions from desktop to mobile. Keep the template visually similar each month for simplicity and to continue establishing your brand, updating annually (if needed) to keep it fresh.
Content is King
- Variety is the spice of life — and marketing. Keep readers engaged by changing topics and focuses. SEOversite matches business with effective web teams for free – that’s our business model. Our monthly newsletters, however, provide a variety of content that should be valuable at least half of the time to each reader. We might talk about personal motivation one month, search engine optimization tips the next month, offer a special or call to action the third month, and provide insight on website design trends the fourth month. Our readership largely continues to follow, open, and read our content as they know we work hard to keep fresh content arriving in their inbox with a strong likelihood it may apply to their needs.
- Let’s be honest, many of us are looking for a deal — 19% of consumers reported that they read every email newsletter that they receive to see if “something is on offer”. Take advantage of your customers desire to get a deal by providing specials on occasion. Consider offering specials only to those who subscribe to your newsletter, but do so sparingly. Think about the 90:10 rule when it comes to your e-newsletters: 90% should be informative and 10% promotional.
- The subject line of your newsletter is the first and possibly only opportunity you have to capture your audience. Without a good subject line people won’t be motivated to open the email and get to the meat of the newsletter. We at SEOversite are quite punny. Others go for shock factor. Regardless, you need to distill down the content to one sentence that will tempt people to open the email. Click bait is frowned upon, but keep subject lines engaging.
TLDR (Too Long, Didn’t Read)
- We are a wordy bunch. Our prose can flow like a twig on the shoulder of a mighty stream, so we have to be conscious to limit our monthly information drops to 500-1000 words. More than that is difficult for your readers to take in — especially in a newsletter format. Using numbers or bullet points is a prudent choice as you can see here in our 7th tip of this newsletter.
Optimize for SEO
- The SEO benefits of e-newsletters are robust. By adding more content and links to your web presence, you are helping Google recognize your website. Use headers (just like a newspaper headline), optimize the content by using key words (like we have done here “Optimize for SEO When Writing Email Newsletters”) and link to your web page and social media for added SEO benefits. Most newsletters with valuable information are “evergreen content” and should be posted to your website permanently to improve SEO.
Timing is Everything
- The optimal day and time to send your e-newsletter is going to depend on your subscribers. Some email programs such as MailChimp provide a feature that calculates your list’s optimal time based on previous opens. The best way to figure it out is to test it. We have discovered that sending our e-newsletters on a Saturday around 10 AM produces the best open rates for our clientele made up of business owners, managers, and salespeople, but you may find Tuesdays at 11 AM is your optimal time.
Post it, Share it, Link it
- Multiply the benefits of your works by linking, posting, and sharing each email newsletter. Post the content on your web page to help build your content (to improve your SEO) as well as create a library of useful industry knowledge. Share and re-share the content on your social media feeds such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn. It will help you gain exposure and hopefully more newsletter subscriptions. Link the newsletter on your personal social media feeds as well as have all of your employees feel encouraged to like and share as well. A recent post we placed on LinkedIn had over 1400 views in a week in addition to other places we posted the information simply by liking and sharing in a new location.
e-Newsletters are a great tool in your marketing toolbox. Focusing on quality content, a true brand voice, and best practices before simply offering a bunch of discounts will help you on your path to success. For more tips and information on maximizing your online presence, from email newsletters and video editing, to website design and search engine optimization support, visit www.seoversite.com or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.