Writing a successful email newsletter, or e-newsletter, isn’t always sunshine and rainbows. In fact, there are several key components you have to worry about all at once, such as writing compelling copy, creating an engaging design that works on all devices, making interesting subject lines, and more.
Of course, you may be wondering why it’s even worth creating an email newsletter in the first place. After all, the rise of social media and online ads has made email marketing pretty redundant…right?
While it’s nice to think that email newsletters are out the door, the exact opposite is true.
Email marketing remains one of the most effective avenues to generate revenue, even with the popularity of other types of marketing. In fact, according to WordStream, for every $1 spent on email marketing $44 is made in return.
It’s for this reason email marketing should, if it hasn’t already, become part of your overall marketing strategy for your business or personal goals.
Here are a couple of important steps you can follow to create a successful email newsletter:
Before you begin typing out the content that will go into your newsletter, you must decide on what goals and targets you are planning to reach once it’s sent. Who are you planning to reach with your newsletter? Are you trying to generate leads or traffic to your website?
Your email newsletter should fit your overall content strategy, and you should keep a list of individuals you want to communicate through this email. Once you have decided on your goals and target audience for your email newsletter, it’ll be easier to create the right message and measure performance.
Setting your goals helps you gather the right content for your email newsletter. When you’re gathering your content, it’s important to create an effective content schedule that includes what you’re going to include within your newsletter, who you’re sending it to, and the approximate time you will be sending it out.
Great places to search for content are your business’s blog, social media accounts, and training documents.
Email marketing has come a long way since the days of creating email lists on an Excel spreadsheet and outdated Outlook messages. With email marketing tools like Mailchimp, Constant Contact, and Campaign Monitor, you are able to create contact lists, attractive email newsletter templates, and add in other key features that will make your newsletter clickable to users.
Some of these options also have a free trial plan to try out their services, which can help you choose the one that meets your newsletter goals. Other great email newsletter tools you can use are GetResponse, Benchmark, and Aweber.
Now that you have decided on an email newsletter tool, it’s time to dive into design! It’s important to create an attractive HTML template that reflects your business’s brand. Users should also be able to read and click on features within your newsletter as well. And of course it MUST be mobile-friendly as well.
The email marketing tools we’ve offered on step #3 offer templates that can be changed and edited to your liking. Your newsletter doesn’t need to look too flashy, but the end result should look professional and easy-to-read.
If you need some inspiration for email newsletter templates, check out these examples from Hubspot.
Remember that all email providers read code in a unique way. Your email newsletter may look great on Outlook but look clunky on Yahoo! Same goes for Gmail and other email providers. This means you will need to test out your newsletter with different providers before you officially send it out to your contact list.
You may need to create fake email accounts for each email provider or use tools like Litmus to test your newsletter manually.
After you send your email newsletter to your selected contacts, you should measure its performance a few days afterwards. Most email newsletter tools have reporting features that allow to track and analyze how your newsletter has done.
You should observe the statistics carefully. Check the parts of your email that received the most clicks and helped you reach the goals you set in step #1. You should also note the content that didn’t receive too much attention. Based on these observations, you will have an idea on your newsletter’s strengths and create better newsletters in the future.
On the contrary to the naysayers, email marketing is thriving, even with the popularity of social media and newer forms of marketing. As long as you avoid over-communicating with your target audience and obey laws, email newsletter will become a useful aspect of your content marketing strategy.