You may have seen it a hundred times. You navigate to a website, start scrolling, and then get a pop-up to sign up for that business’s newsletter. Or, you purchase something online, get a confirmation email, and on it is a button urging you to receive their weekly emails. It seems like almost every company, no matter what industry they are in, has an email marketing strategy.
There’s a big reason for this, and that’s quite simply that it works. According to a DMA study in 2019, $1 spent on email marketing receives returns of around $42. That’s a big opportunity! Not to mention, putting a newsletter together on a regular basis isn’t typically very time consuming. Maybe you’ve been thinking about starting your own newsletter and don’t know where to start. Or perhaps you hadn’t thought of it before and are now interested. Today’s blog post will take a look at a few steps you can take to get your content into customers’ inboxes.
Step 1: Research
Before diving straight in, it’s a good idea to take a look at what other business’ newsletters look like. A good idea is to take a look at companies that are similar to yours, maybe even your competitors. What kind of content do they include? How do they add value for their customers?
It’s also good to do some more general research to get an idea of the many different styles. What do you think would work for your brand? How can you take what works well for other businesses and make it your own? You don’t have to be super original, but make sure that it is consistent for your brand and will resonate with your customers.
Step 2: Define Your Email Audience
If you have buyer personas, now would be a good time to bring them in. You should know exactly who you’re targeting with your emails. This goes beyond the vague audience of your customers. You should have defined demographics and psychographics that every newsletter, every piece of content will be targeted toward.
An efficient way to decide what content your audience might like is to take a look at your other platforms and see what has performed well in the past. It should be fairly straightforward to replicate this in your newsletter. You can also ask your customers directly what they would want to see, either through social media or in a survey.
Step 3: Start Creating and Build Up Your Email List
This process doesn’t ever stop, but it’s especially important as you start creating your newsletter. You want to build up your mailing list as much as you possibly can before the first email even goes out, that way you can begin maximizing your returns right from the start. Possibly the best way to tell your audience about it is to post on social media and add a prominent link on your website.
At the same time, you want to begin putting your first newsletter together. That way, the people who sign up won’t be waiting for long before getting their emails. Take the research you did in step one, and begin building it up from there.
The actual content of the email will be up to you, but a good rule of thumb is to add a call to action for people to share the newsletter with their friends, or to sign up to receive emails if they haven’t already done so. Always be sure to have an unsubscribe button.
Step 4: Edit and Send Your Email
Once you think your newsletter is ready, get a trusted individual to look it over for you. They can provide some much needed outside perspective. It is also a good idea to send a test email to make sure your images and designs will display properly and that it doesn’t get sent to spam.
Once you’re prepared, all you need to do is hit send. There will no doubt be an influx of feedback as your audience begins receiving your emails, so be ready to listen. The newsletters are for them, after all.
Step 5: Review and Adapt
After launching any sort of campaign or strategy, it’s important to take a look back and see what worked and what didn’t. Take the feedback that customers sent you from the last step and see if you can implement it in any way. It’s good and important to stay fairly consistent within your emails, but don’t be afraid to make tweaks as you continuously learn what works best for your company.
And, inevitably, once one newsletter goes out, it’s time to get started on the next one. Begin thinking about what content you want to go into the next one. How you can build on the last one to make it even better?
Email marketing is a huge opportunity for small businesses in all industries. Your newsletters don’t have to be fancy or complicated. They simply need to reflect your brand and provide content that you think your target audience will benefit from.
At Vervology, we understand that you may not have the time or resources to put an email marketing campaign together. If you think your business could benefit from a newsletter, but need some additional help getting started, feel free to set up a consultation with us. We’d love to help out.