Do you have a business newsletter? If you don't, what's holding you back? Is content the issue? Are you just not sure what you're going to tell your customers in every newsletter?
Newsletters are a great way to stay connected with your audience, especially if you have a long buying process or you run a business that thrives on repeat business. If either of those things is true, sending out a newsletter can keep you top of mind even when your customers aren’t quite ready to buy what you sell. Newsletters are a good nurturing and connection tool when you offer your audience something they want.
This comes down to content.
You want to make sure that you offer your audience something of value. To help with that, we've detailed a few things that you should put in a newsletter to get more opens.
Top Items You Want in Your Business Newsletter
Before we get into the actual content of your newsletter, we do want to mention one extremely important thing. Your content won't matter if people aren't clicking to open.
So the first thing that you want to make sure your newsletter has is a compelling subject line. When people are making decisions about opening a newsletter it's based on two things. The first is who it's from and the second is the subject line. Spend a lot of time developing the perfect subject line if you'd like to increase your clicks.
Now let's get to the content.
This is one of the top reasons people agree to exchange their email address for content. If you're offering discounts solely to your newsletter reading audience, make sure they know this. This will likely drive signups as everyone loves a good discount.
However, the discounts don't have to be on your product or service. You can partner with another business in the area and offer discounts for their services. For instance, if you're a photographer you could partner with a local beauty salon to offer your clients a special discount on their services. You could create special packages only for newsletter readers. Make them feel exclusive. Plus, it’s usually a benefit for both businesses.
An Engaging Welcome
At the beginning of the newsletter, it's nice to give a welcome to your subscribers and direct them to the important highlights contained inside. Often, it's a good idea to include a brief story or some other way to connect with your audience. Think of this area as the doorway to the party. If you’re a good host, you meet your guest at the doorway and give them a few quick intros or directions. You want to give them something to do so they’ll enjoy themselves.
One Informative Article
Each newsletter should have a little “meat” in it. This article should be between 300-500 words. Think of it as your “main act.” This article should help your subscribers in some way such as teaching them something.
If you are worried about length, use a teaser. Include the first paragraph or summary into of a few sentences with a read more directive that points to your website where the entire article is posted.
Images are very important because they break up text and give people something to look at. But a newsletter only has so much real estate. Make sure that you use every inch of it effectively. Your images should do double duty. They should be engaging but they should also serve a purpose. You can create image quotes, infographics, stats over images, or pictures of your team that will help your customers feel more connected to you.
These ideas are just the beginning of how you can begin engaging your audience with a business newsletter. Don’t stop here. Pay attention to the needs and interests of your audience. They may enjoy polls and surveys or may like clickable boxes and other interactive features. Play around with these and see how they respond.
Speaking of clicking…
Pay attention to the hyperlinks they're clicking on and create more content like that. Also, make sure your newsletters are shareable on social media. You never know when one of your recipients will be moved to share the information with someone else.
Christina R. Metcalf (formerly Green) is a marketer who enjoys using the power of story and refuses to believe meaningful copy can be written by bots. She helps chamber and small business professionals find the right words when they don’t have the time or interest to do so.
Christina hates exclamation points and loves road trips. Say hi on Twitter or reach out on Facebook.