Should you be sending an email newsletter?
In this busy modern world, where we spend almost 7 hours a day online (TRT World), we are desperate for connection. Perhaps this is why branding has become deeper and more diverse in meaning than ever before. It isn’t enough for generations Y and Z to follow a brand, we want to feel part of their story. Those brands that are rewarded with loyalty are those that take us on the journey with them. As a result, these brands don’t only get a customer, they get a fan who is likely to spread the word and shepherd their friends towards your business also. One way of instigating and retaining this connection is to ensure you are communicating with your almost, former, and potential customers. One of the best methods for this is a blog. However, you’ll still need to drive traffic there. So ultimately, you’ll need an email newsletter. So many businesses make a commitment to send regular email newsletters and then quickly run out of ideas. Like most things, the more often we do it, the easier the ideas flow and the quicker the process. So, here are a few ideas for your email marketing newsletter, to get you started.
Email Marketing Newsletter Ideas
What you’ll need to decide before you start communicating with your subscribers is what kind of relationship you want with them.
Perhaps you have the kind of business where the same customer might shop regularly with you, in which case you’ll want to touch base often with new products and offers. However, if you have a business where a customer is not likely to shop again, at least for some time, then you’ll want to focus on them sharing your content and helping to promote your brand to others.
Sometimes it’s a bit of both and sometimes a customer may not buy from you for themselves again but they might purchase items as gifts.
All of the above will affect the strategy you put in place for your email marketing. Particularly for newsletters.
Here are some ideas for email marketing newsletters:
I’s always best to begin with a 'hello' and thanks for subscribing'. Briefly introduce yourself as well as your business. Invite readers to view your story (with a link to where it is on your website). Then a recent news article link and a featured product or two will make this the perfect first contact.
It’s important to reward those who subscribe. Businesses can’t always do this with giveaways or offers, but there are other ways (see storytelling). However, if you can offer a discount code or free shipping these are very enticing and often lead to sales.
Another great way to grow your business is to offer a discount code to those who share your website link with others. Or to offer a discount to their friends. Incorporating social media is a great way to do this and to get your shop more visibility online.
IMPORTANT - keep the language upbeat and exciting but try not to be too pushy in your approach. If you need help getting the balance right it may be worth talking to a copywriter, like me (shoot me an email if you need help).
To really establish a relationship with subscribers, you must share your interests, values and your story. A blog is an excellent place to talk about the wider aspects of your business that go beyond product and profit. If you’re doing that then your newsletters are a great way to promote your blog articles. They needn’t be long but they should be personal. Increasingly, consumers make choices that take into account who they want to buy from, as much as what they want to buy.
Obviously, you can’t keep regurgitating your approach and values. However, a good way of reinforcing this is spreading and commenting on relevant issues and news. Chances are that those who support your business will also consider this of interest.
For example, if you sell children’s books and are dedicated to children’s learning then you might share news around education. You might also let customers know about events that are relevant, such as local storytelling sessions or kid’s writing workshops. Beyond this, you may want to write content that will appeal to parents. This might include guides or quick tips on topics relevant to the age group of children who might read the books in your shop.
Once you start blogging the ideas will flow far more easily and it’s great content to share in your newsletter. You’re giving former customers and potential customers a reason to keep in touch will you beyond making purchases. Then, when they are seeking what you’re selling, they’ll be far more likely to turn to you.
If you’re a small business in need of help with blogging then please get in touch. I write SEO blog articles for a wide range of small businesses and can tailor content to feature in online newsletter emails.
‘We’re having a sale’ emails and new product emails are great but shouldn’t be sent out too often. Continuous sales are off-putting and there’s no need to update your customers with every single new product. Too many emails and they’ll start being deleted instantly. Customers may even unsubscribe.
Using lots of colour, larger fonts and concise messaging is the attention-grabbing style you need for these emails.
IMPORTANT - timing is very important. Your strike rate is never going to be as good on Monday morning when most people are trying to get in the ‘work zone.’
Do you have any more email marketing ideas? Please share them in the comments!