How To: Write a Brilliant Newsletter

09 September 2019

Email newsletters can drive traffic, give content more exposure, raise brand awareness, provide your customers with value and more. They’re also one of the trickiest forms of digital marketing to master, but with our help you’ll be writing brilliant newsletters in no time. 

1. Make it count

Think about the number of emails you receive every day, the great flood of newsletters that wash in, all demanding to be read. The competition is fierce, so when someone does open your newsletter it should do as much for them as it does for you. Keep it relevant, relatively short (a paragraph of two is normally optimal and full of links to timely content, promotions and other resources.

2. Craft a great subject line

Writing a subject line this a delicate balance between being boring and indulging in sensationalism. Go OVERBOARD with capitalisation and HYPERBOLE that your readers SIMPLY WON’T BELIEVE is something best reserved for tabloid headline writers. The golden rule to remember is that great subject lines intrigue, but they don’t misrepresent, so you need to be able to deliver anything you promise.  

3. Don’t Spam

How much is too much? A common trap that businesses fall into is to think of their newsletters as a numbers game. If only 1% get opened and 0.5% generate any sort of action, surely it makes sense to send out as many emails as you can, right? Wrong. Unless you’re generating brilliant and topical content every day, then sending out a newsletter a day or even every 2 days isn’t going to work. 

Whilst it makes sense purely in the numerical side of things, the practical result is that people are going to get sick of seeing your clog up their inbox. They’re going to think of you as spammers, which not only increases their likelihood of unsubscribing from your newsletter, it also damages your brand image. Depending on the amount of content you have to share, a weekly or monthly newsletter is much more appropriate. 

4. Embrace consistency

Consistently publishing content at the same time on an obvious schedule is a surprisingly powerful tactic. It creates a sense of reliability and schedule that’s often lacking in the free form chaos of the digital world. You can see it commonly employed by bloggers and podcasts, but it also works well for newsletters. If your readers know when your newsletter comes out every week/month, they’re much more likely to look for it in their inbox. 

Consistency isn’t just about timing though. It’s about creating the same tone and impression that you do with your main site, helping to reinforce your existing branding. No one wants their accountant to be sending them emails with emojis in the subject line.

5. Measure, measure, measure

Using a third-party tool for your newsletters, such as Mailchimp, opens up a whole new world of possibilities. Your email marketing campaigns are suddenly a goldmine for potentially useful data. Open rates let you track how many people are opening your emails, allowing you to see if your subject lines are having the desired effect. Bounce rates let you easily see which emails on your list are no longer in use. 

Click throughs and conversions give you the power to directly track if someone has visited your site and made a purchase/booking thanks to your newsletter. With this data in hand, you can test and tweak until you find the perfect way to craft brilliant newsletters for specific customer base. 

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