How many emails do you receive from different brands every day? How many of them do you actually open and read? Don’t let your brand’s next email newsletter find its way to trash folders!
If you’re at a loss for how to create a newsletter that converts to more website traffic or sales, here are some tips from Utah marketing firm Gravitate One.
Create Valuable Content
Your newsletter should provide benefits for opting in. Your newsletter should also add value to subscribers’ lives. Other online platforms might be for getting to know you or your brand, but your newsletter generally isn’t the place for that.
Depending on your industry, you can get creative with what value your newsletter offers to subscribers. After the initial opt-in benefit, be sure you’re regularly offering something to your subscribers to keep them.
Incentives for Opting In:
- Free downloads – printables, ebooks, videos
- Early access to products/services
Be consistent, but don’t send a newsletter just for the sake of it. If you have to copy and paste content from one of your existing blog articles in order to send a monthly newsletter, rethink that strategy. Remember that content should be unique and valuable.
Now that you have a list of newsletter subscribers, it’s time to talk strategy. What’s the goal of your newsletter as a facet of your overall digital marketing strategy?
What’s Your Newsletter Focus?
- Share product releases
- Offer exclusive discounts for subscribers only
- Information regarding your industry
- Increase online presence
- Drive traffic to certain website landing pages
- Call-to-Action for sales
One of these reasons can be the focus of your newsletter strategy. Everything you do, from writing the copy to creating visuals, is to help you meet your end goal. If you’re not sure what your goal should be, the digital marketing experts at Gravitate One can help. Our team can help you analyze how people are interacting with your content.
Share Relevant Content
Your newsletter could offer relevant information from other people in your industry. Such as, “Hey, did you see this article in TIME magazine regarding XYZ? We thought you’d find it interesting since you’re such a big fan of [our product/service].”
You can also use your email list to let regular customers know about a collaboration with another brand that benefits subscribers. Maybe you’ve collaborated on a design to give your product new customizations, or you’re able to offer exclusive discounts when your products are purchased together with those of another brand’s.
Highlight Customer Content
Can your newsletter highlight customer-created content? Can you share a roundup of the customer reviews that have been left online? What about funny memes that compliment your brand? For example:
Texas beekeeper Erika Thompson (Texas Beeworks) has gone viral online for some of her video content about relocating bees who have created hives in less-than-ideal locations. She often wraps up her videos with the tagline “It was another great day saving the bees.” That’s generated a lot of buzz (pun intended!) from parody content makers, who copy her voiceovers in creative ways. You’ll find some videos on TikTok with the tagline “It was another great day saving the cheese,” and Erika has shared those parody videos on her own online platforms. Doing this shows Erika has a good sense of humor and helps her build rapport with her community. Additionally, sharing this content allows her to have a presence online without producing new content herself.
Capitalize on Trending Topics
Your newsletter can refer to trending topics that relate to your industry. You can search hashtags on Instagram or Twitter to see what people are saying about products or services similar to your own.
Or, you could see what general news topics are trending and synthesize that information in your newsletter to show subscribers you’re in the know. It could range from something harmless like a #ThrowbackThursday hashtag, or get a bit more specific with trending pop culture, sports, or health topics. Just remember your goal for your newsletter and ask yourself if a trending topic helps you get there.
Include a Call-to-Action
To help convert newsletter subscribers into paying customers, think about what your call-to-action (CTA) looks like. Where is it placed? How is it worded?
Your CTA can include visuals or buttons with hyperlinks, or texts with hyperlinks to get your subscribers to click through. Some experts recommend including a CTA directly in the content of the email. The wording of your CTA should relate to your end goal. If you want readers to head to a blog article, ask or tell them to “READ NOW.” If you want them to buy a product or service, the CTA should ask or tell them to “BUY NOW.” Whatever your specific call-to-action, place it near the top of your email so it’s seen first.
Keep it Simple
You have the perfect content, and you know what you want your email to achieve. Now it’s time to ensure your newsletter is readable and on-brand.
Thankfully, there are a lot of templates available to help you format a visually appealing newsletter. Whether you use a template or fully customize your newsletter, stay true to your current brand colors, fonts, and general aesthetic.
Be sure your content is edited and tested so it is mobile-friendly, and works with different email hosts. You’ll also want to test your email for those who are visually impaired or translating your content into another language.
Perfect Your Delivery
The subject line of your newsletter should let subscribers know exactly what the body of the newsletter contains. Forbes recommends including a few relevant emojis in a subject to help your email stand out compared to others that are text-only.
Who or what shows up as the “sender” when your email hits subscribers’ inboxes? Is it better to use your brand name, or the name of a real live person, such as the president of the company? You don’t want recipients immediately marking your newsletter email as spam, so be sure you’re using a recognizable sender name.
According to Litmus research, many email subscribers disable images, so you’ll want to use alt text to describe what your newsletter images are showing. This is not only helpful for those who choose not to allow the images to come through but for anyone who is differently-abled and uses a screen reader to convey information, or for those who translate your emails into their native language. The alt text will replace your images with text so readers still know what the content is, even if they don’t see the visuals.
Types of Visuals to Use in a Newsletter
Spread the Word
Since your newsletter isn’t just regurgitated content from your other platforms, you’ll want to spread the word that it exists. You can tease your newsletter content on other platforms. Link to it, include a quote from it, hint to coupon codes, or simply ask people to sign up if they’d like access to something exclusive.
Besides these tips for creating a newsletter that converts, you’ll need to keep in mind that the world of email marketing is often evolving. You may need to regularly study your analytics to see what’s working for you and what isn’t. Don’t be afraid to shift gears or seek input from those with experience in the digital marketing industry.