Four ways to improve your email newsletter

Email newsletters are more popular now than they’ve been in many years, thanks in part to a surge in new platforms. 

Writing a newsletter may seem like an easy addition to your content marketing program, but there are four fundamental components to growing an email newsletter you’ll want to keep in mind: 

  1. Understand your goals 

Is your plan to monetize your newsletter directly by selling paid subscriptions? Or will it be indirectly profitable by funnelling potential clients back to your core business? 

If you’re going with paid subscriptions, you’ll need to optimize your occasional free content for mass reach, knowing only a small percentage of your total potential readers will subscribe to the paid edition. Create free content with virality and wider sharing in mind, and focus your paid content on quality, consistency, and frequency to reward your paying readers for signing up. 

If you’ll be using the newsletter as a marketing channel for your main business, you’ll want to focus on depth instead of mass reach. You’re working to grow an audience of people who appreciate your expertise enough that they’ll want to purchase your product or service, which requires specialization and focus. A smaller but more dedicated following are more likely to become customers than a large but casually-engaged audience. 

  1. Focus on your subject lines 

The quality of your subject line is the biggest contributing factor to your email open rate. Craft your subject lines to stand out in a crowded inbox and promise a benefit that makes opening the email more enticing. But don’t forget to fully deliver on the subject line’s promise or your audience will feel duped. 

  1. Ensure skimmability 

People get too much email as it is and they skim it all. Make your email newsletter easily skimmable, so someone can get the major points (and the call-to-action) without needing to read every word. The goal is to interest, educate, and entice your audience. 

Separate main points into their own paragraphs. Italicize and bold where appropriate, and don’t forget bullets or numbered lists to grab the eye and make the content more digestible. 

  1. Maintain consistency 

Most of your audience will be semi-interested at best—everyone’s busy and few people are longing for more email marketing in their lives. But a certain percentage will be loyal and engaged followers, looking forward to each new edition. 

Reward and encourage their interest by remaining consistent with your schedule, your content themes, and your audience focus. 

You’ll always want to experiment with improvements and adjustments over time, but don’t be arbitrary—if you have a consistent schedule, do your best to stick with it. If your audience is clearly engaged with a particular vein of content or a precise style, improve upon it but don’t abandon it out of boredom. 

You want your content to stay fresh and you’ll always be at risk of alienating those who resist any type of change at all, but don’t undermine your success by sending your emails at random intervals or flipping between content themes or styles on a whim. 

An Email newsletter can be incredibly valuable in your marketing mix, and if you keep these core concepts in mind you’ll be more successful and have more fun along the way. 

If you need support with the content marketing strategy of your business, contact us and we can help.