EYEMAGINE EYEMAGINE on January 5, 2016 at 4:13 PM

Tips for Creating Newsletters People Actually Want to Read

Inbound

How to create newsletters people want to read

When it comes to newsletters, it's important to remember these rules of thumb: less is more and quality over quantity.

People are way too busy and distracted to read long-winded newsletters anymore, so companies are coming up with clever and innovative ways to capture the attention of their audience.

Here are five tips for creating appealing newsletters that will keep your customers coming back for more.

Clever Subject Line

In addition to being one of the very first things a subscriber sees in a newsletter, the subject line plays a significant role in enticing the recipient to actually open the email in the first place.

Set your company's newsletter apart from the rest and give your readers something to fancy right off the bat, before they even open the email.

The email subject line is your chance to grab your readers' attention and convince them that something fresh, exciting, and worthwhile is awaiting them on the other side. If the subject line is boring or generic, then your readers probably aren't going to have any reason to open the email.

A great way to entice your readers is to add some thought-provoking words, puns, or common phrases to the subject line to pique their interest.

Personalize Your Message

No one wants to know and feel they are getting a generic email so you should personalize your newsletters (and every email sent, for that matter) so that each recipient's name appears somewhere in the message.

Go above and beyond by adding personalized content so the email will personally resonate with them. As a part of our inbound marketing services, we add in systems to identify each contact's persona, which identifies their needs and the problems they are looking to fix. Based on a recipient's persona, we can change a piece of content to ensure each person is getting something that's relevant to them. Remember, it's the little things that make the biggest difference for each and every one of your subscribers.

In doing so, you not only show the recipients that your brand cares enough to go the extra mile for their followers, but it may just gain you another loyal customer -- which is priceless, in our books. A little goes a long way when it comes to showing your customers that you truly care about them and value their business.

Check out some great examples of personalized emails in this HubSpot article.

Incorporate Appealing Visuals

Who doesn’t love some imagery in a newsletter to break up all those words nobody has time to read? Gone are the days where newsletters were long-winded educational pieces (much like what blogs/articles are now) with minimal to no images.

In fact, there was once a time where email providers offered a "Hide All Images" option because load times bogged down emails. Nowadays, visuals are everything.

According to Inc., "The way people--especially younger people--are consuming content is radically changing" and veering more towards visually-rich content versus text-heavy content.

Therefore, if you're not incorporating visual content (images, GIFs, and/or videos) in your online communications, then you're not optimizing your digital marketing efforts for today's consumers.

Creative Call-to-Actions

Newsletters should contain a nice balance of informative vs. promotional content, with promotional material being kept to a minimum.

Your audience doesn’t want to feel like you're asking them to hand over their hard-earned cash every time they receive one of your newsletters, so be sure to sell your products/services only every so often and in a non intrusive way.

At the same time, newsletters are intended to keep your subscribers in the know about new products/services, promotions and sales, and new happenings at the company, so don't forget to include a call to action (CTA) or two in your newsletter to direct your readers back to your site.

Make your CTAs enticing and click-worthy -- in other words, not boring and generic. For instance, rather than your CTA button saying "Click here", consider naming it something more interesting like, "Get Your FREE Copy Now" or "I Want That!" to add some flare, personality, and a sense of urgency. Keep your CTA text short and sweet, and be sure that they can be easily spotted in your newsletter.

Consistency is Key

When constructing newsletters, it's best to stick with a design and format that is consistent from email to email and that also aligns with the company's branding (i.e. typography, imagery and logo guidelines, and color palette).

Another way to stay conistent is in the frequency of your emails. If you send newsletters out every other Tuesday, then be sure that you stick to that schedule so your readers can learn to expect to hear from you. 

By staying consistent with your frequency and branding, your readers subconsciously learn to trust and rely on your brand's message and offerings.

Over time, this trust turns into brand loyalty, which is the ultimate ROI for your company's marketing efforts.

Conclusion

In the end, your audience wants to be spoken to, not spoken at.

Therefore, it is vital to also understand how to communicate to your customers effectively, especially when it comes to frequent communications such as newsletters.

Go the extra mile to ensure that every single newsletter is personalized, beautiful, rich, and worthwhile for your readers -- otherwise, you're just wasting everyone's time.

Use the tips above to craft newsletters that will wow your audience and keep them engaged with your brand now and for the long haul.

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