You’ve got mail.
E-mail marketing is fairly easy, effective, and inexpensive when compared to other forms of marketing. However, there have been doubts about the value of email marketing as a result of our short attention spans and today’s fast-paced environment.
So are you surprised to learn that email newsletters are trending again?
Fun fact: within the past year, three notable email newsletters were launched specifically targeting millennial women. Lenny Letter, a twice a week feminist newsletter from the creators of HBO’s Girls; theSkimm, a weekday newsletter summing up current events; and Clover, a daily newsletter for girls created by former magazine editors, have appeared in millions of women’s inboxes in 2016.
The mere fact that 16-year-old to 26-year-old women are migrating away from their Instagram accounts for a moment to read an email newsletter is a true testament to the value of publishing engaging content. In a culture where email newsletters were almost out the door, the email newsletter is making a comeback.
Here are five steps to successfully launch an email newsletter:
- Set up an account with an email marketing software.
The days of blind copying all of your Outlook contacts in one email blast are over. Utilizing email marketing software makes sending your company’s email newsletter a breeze.
According to Capterra, there are currently 277 email marketing software solutions currently on the market. But don’t be overwhelmed by the decision process; we’ll narrow it down for you. We recommend using Constant Contact or MailChimp to send emails to your clients, customers, and prospects.
- Create a comprehensive contact list.
Most email marketing software can hold upwards of 50,000 contacts. After gathering contact information from prospective clients at tradeshows, conferences, networking events, or through other collection methods, be sure to import your contacts into your email marketing software database.
Interested consumers can also sign up for your company’s email newsletter by filling out a form on your website. Make sure your “subscribe” button is readily available to anyone who is interested.
- Determine the content you want to share.
There is no limit to the amount of content that can be featured in e-newsletters.
While best practices a few years ago might have suggested keeping your emails short and sweet, current trends are suggesting people actually enjoy reading long emails.
“There are certain things that you can’t express within the character limitation of Twitter,” Lena Dunham, co-creator of Lenny Letter, said at the 2016 American Magazine Media Conference. “You can’t expect there to be a healthy dialogue that takes place in that finite form.”
Share links to your latest blog posts, personnel announcements, and company accolades. If you have a story to tell, an email can be the appropriate platform to tell it.
- Encourage response from your audience.
Where there is more content to read, there is more opportunity for the audience to respond.
Including links to engaging content on your website or new products that your company recently released is a great way to introduce your audience that might not otherwise stumble upon.
In addition, make sure your company’s social media profiles are out in the open. This gives your audience the opportunity to respond on multiple channels. You can even cross-promote your email newsletter on all your social media accounts to attract new customers and prospects to your newsletter.
- Monitor activity and statistics.
Do you know what a good open rate is for the average email blast?
According to MailChimp, the average email open rate is roughly between 15% and 25% depending on the industry. Those numbers may seem low, but some consumers have their fingers poised to hit delete the moment a new email enters their inbox.
Monitoring your email’s activity and open rate will provide insight on the type of subjects that result in a greater response from your audience or what links your customers are more inclined to click on.
If you have relevant, engaging, and interesting content to push out to your contacts, you should develop an email newsletter for your company. In fact, IMPACT recently relaunched our company newsletter. IMPACT Insights is a quarterly newsletter showcasing successful client projects, employee news, and the latest trends in marketing. Look out for the May newsletter, flying into your inboxes this month.
– Erin McMahon, Marketing Associate