Emails have been used as a personal form of communication for many decades. But now, it has been reduced to professional use only. It is constantly used as a medium of communication between employees and companies. Moreover, marketers often use them to grab the attention of strangers in a way which compels them to buy their services.
Unfortunately, not many people possess the skills of crafting an email that can produce desired results. Often, marketers create email campaigns that are made up of entirely boring content. If you keep up with this habit, you will earn a bad reputation which will force your readers to hit ‘mark as read’ button even before viewing the content.
With this in mind, we have come up with a fool-proof method that will help you with your email newsletter skills.
Email Newsletters: Dying or Thriving?
Industries rely on email newsletters to tell the subscribers about their latest developments either in products or services. Often it is seen, by many marketers, as a tool to keep people in the loop.
In spite of this, many marketers think that email newsletter is dying and thus, they are leaning on other forms of marketing i.e. through social media. However, we can assure you that email is nowhere near its extinction. No matter how much other people compel you to ditch email newsletters for a better method of connecting, never take on their advice because these numbers do not lie!
According to a Radicati Group’s report, email newsletters have seen a rise in its opening rate. In 2017, the number of emails between companies and its consumers reached a whopping 269 billion. These numbers are expected to grow at the rate of 4.4% which means that email newsletters consumption could reach 319.6 billion by 2021.
This is just one research; there are tons of other reports that sing the same tune. So with the knowledge that email newsletters are here to stay, let us analyze all the elements that make up the email content worthy of subscribers’ time.
Email Newsletters: Crafting Worthy Email Content
Hire PHP programmer and they will help you set up a newsletter system. But it is YOU who will have to form an email content strategy. Without knowing your way around this topic, you are doomed. Fortunately, we have got your back!
Set Your Newsletter Goals
First and foremost: set your newsletter goals. Without having any idea about where and how to start can wreck your hopes of expanding your contact list. Moreover, if you have no defined criteria to help you measure your opening rate success, then you need to scratch it all off and start over.
Before setting up your goals, ask yourself the following questions:
- Who is your target audience?
- Are you looking to broaden your company’s reach?
- Do you want to generate more leads?
- And, are you willing to introduce a new service or product?
With the help of such questions, you can determine the goal of your newsletter. Also, determine what you want to achieve as this will help you create content that will be well-received by your audience.
Divide Your Newsletter’s Content into Smaller Sections
What happens when you are reading a book or a magazine? Your eyes scan the content from left to right as to not miss all the irrelevant or important details. But that is not how it works with email newsletters.
When it comes to online content, people read it differently than they do with printed material. As people generally skim the content to look for interesting information, you have only a few seconds to make an impact before they shut you off. Therefore, you need to avoid heavy, solid chunks of content in favor of a lighter one that is sectioned into smaller chunks.
To make your newsletters more efficient, you can embed cards and lay your content over those cards. A great example of this pattern is LopeLAB newsletter where they have utilized the card strategy to break up their content to keep things interesting. Also, this provides the readers with an opportunity to skim through your content and only read the stuff which is of value to them.
So, next time you are developing your email newsletter, just remember to limit your content to a few cards and give your readers some space to pick out information they actually want to read. Also, if you are not a big fan of card design, you can browse through this gallery and pick your favorite newsletter design.
Provide More Information Than Expected
Your subscribers’ email inbox is a sacred place where you get to share your troves of knowledge. With that being said, you need to ensure that the email newsletters that reach your readers’ inbox are of high-quality and devoid of grammatical errors. Still, not everyone will be willing to welcome your email newsletters with open arms. In such scenarios, you need to take a different approach.
To make sure that everyone benefits from your newsletter, you need to create a problem that your readers did not know they had in the first place. Moreover, never share the answer to their ‘newly discovered’ issue in the same email. Of course, you can give them a glimpse by sharing bits and pieces but make sure that you hide the answer behind a link.
When readers will click the link, your website will witness a rise in user activity, your email newsletter will get appropriate user engagement and you will find your target audience. Additionally, if you cannot think of any problem, you can share small samples of your latest posts. You can invite your readers to click the available links to access exclusive content. But before putting this strategy into action, just make sure that your website has such content which will be of interest to your users.
Lastly, ensure that you do not embed any broken link into your newsletter content.
Entice Users with a Clever Subject Line
Subject lines may seem innocent on the surface. But only when you dive deeper that you discover it is actually a horrendous task that never seems to work in your favor. Do not worry, as we have all been there.
Subject lines are important and how you craft one depends on your needs. Whether you want readers to just view the newsletter or to take some action, you need to be clear on what you want for your opening rates to be successful. Likewise, a boring subject line equally destroys your chances.
Putting words together in a sentence with no creativity and with absolutely no personalized touch makes up what experts consider ‘a boring subject line.’ For instance, if you are a plumbing company and compose your subject line as ‘December Newsletter’, then do not be surprised if you have less open rates.
However, if you compose your subject line as ‘We Know Your Loo Issues. Click Open for a Perfect Solution’ your newsletter will generate tons of interest. This is because we all have a toilet and we all face plumbing issues. So when you enclose the solution in the email newsletter, people will open your emails quickly. Such subject lines provide marketers with a chance to introduce new products. Also, they can direct all this traffic towards their website.
Still, if you are not sure if your subject line is the best or if it needs some work, then read this article. In it, you will find various tools that can help you test your lines for efficiency.
Break Up Content Blocks with Visuals
This goes hand in hand with the card strategy. Just like the cards, you can rely on exceptional multimedia files to deliver your message.
Generally, an average reader spends about fifteen seconds to know whether your newsletter is worth reading or not. So if your email newsletter contains only solid blocks of text with no visual breaks, you can easily lose subscribers. This is why we recommend that you incorporate visuals along with text to grab your readers’ attention.
Moreover, images, infographics, and videos are important but you cannot just embed them wherever and however you like. You need to approach this step with a clear strategy in mind.
For instance, if your email content is about food, you can add high-quality food pictures to freshen up your readers’ minds. Likewise, if you think a video or infographics can help you communicate your message in a better way, then it is time for your developer to do some work. Or you can also hire PHP programmer to help you with your newsletter’s visuals and design.
Readers appreciate humor so you can rely on funny GIFs to add that humorous element. However, moderation is the key. Although people breathe a sigh of relief when there are some visuals in the newsletters, never overdo it as it may backfire.
Create Personalized Content
In your email’s contact list, not everyone shares the same status of professionalism. This means that you cannot work with a single email newsletter draft and send the same design to everyone.
As different people have different needs, understanding, and varying capabilities; you can get advantage from this ‘difference factor’ and work it in your favor. So instead of sending similar content to everyone in your contact list, you can personalize it to deliver an unforgettable experience.
However, this strategy is easier said than done because it requires time, maximum team efforts and can take a toll on your financial department. If you do not have the time and the means to carry out this task, you can employ tools like Newsletter2Go to help you send personalized newsletters.
Moreover, you can take inspiration from the Adidas email newsletters. Notice how they have used different visuals and a varying color scheme based on genders. Likewise, you can define a criterion and divide your contact list into those separate categories to deliver targeted content.
Use Whitespace and Contrast in Your Favor
Using high-quality images and strong color scheme is never a bad thing. However, it is the lack of contrast and white space that can put your newsletters in trouble. Remember that having a balance in everything is the key to a successful email newsletter strategy.
For this reason, be sure to balance out your content and visuals with a nice dose of white space. Just like how solid blocks of text can impact reading rate, a newsletter devoid of white space can have the same impact. Also, it does not matter if you have incorporated great photos that complement your text, a lack of space can hinder your readers from enjoying your emails.
Similarly, sticking with a single color throughout the entire newsletter can have the same adverse reactions. What you want to do is employ various contrasting colors and use it to highlight important buttons from the general text. For further read, you can check this article as it guides readers on the most appropriate color scheme.
Lastly, perform test, tests, and tests. Regardless of how many experts swear by to some of the newsletters’ practices, remember that not everything will work in your favor. This is why you need to perform tests and conduct A/B testing to see which practices generate results and which fails to impress readers.
With that being said, you need to circulate the final draft of your newsletter within your team and get their feedback. If the suggestions are worth pondering over, you can bring changes to your newsletter accordingly. However, you still should not deliver the email newsletter to your subscribers without sending it to your inbox first.
Through this step, you can get a first-hand experience of how the email newsletter would look like in the subscribers’ inbox. Also, use this opportunity to go over the subject line, assess the content and analyze the visuals. Make sure that all the embed buttons and links are working and that it takes users to the desired place.
Always remember that even the smallest details matter, so keep testing no matter how much time it takes. Because in the end, those extra fifteen minutes of testing would help you strengthen your email newsletter skills.
With this, we bring an end to our topic. Hopefully, by the end of this, you will have learned a thing or two about email newsletters and the skills required for perfecting one.
Shawn Mike has been working with writing challenged clients for over five years. He provides ghostwriting, SMM and copywriting services. His educational background in the technical field and business studies has given him a broad base from which to approach many topics. He occasionally writes web development articles for Hire PHP Programmers. And his Gravatar Id is: https://en.gravatar.com/ishawnmike