Updated: Dec 31, 2020
Email marketing is an excellent way to provide targeted marketing while also providing relevant and impactful information to your audience. Readers who already visit your website have already shown interest in your brand or business and went a step further by signing up to receive your email newsletter. These are essentially potential clients. These clients are the most valuable audience in your ecosystem. Aim your marketing efforts towards them for a higher ROI.
1. Quality Content
When it comes to creating content, always focus on quality, not quantity. Be sure that each piece of content is clear in its purpose and has meaningful messaging. It doesn't matter how much content you create, as long as it's captivating, because high-quality content gets the highest amount of shares.
2. Clear & Concise
Have a purpose for sharing content with followers or readers and make sure the message is clear. Keep it short and sweet! There's no need to over-explain. If there is a necessary explanation for a more elaborate topic within the content, provide a link for further reading, preferably linking back to a blog post on your website. Linking to other credible third-party media outlets is a great way to improve Search Engine Optimization (SEO) on a website.
Internal linking is a better way to get visitors to spend more time on your website because this helps them to discover other content. Creating links for further reading is a great way to drive more traffic to your site but use them sparingly. Less is more! Too many links are distracting and can ultimately drive readers away from your content.
Include a "Call-to-Action" or "CTA" in your content. This could be in the form of a button or a link. Sometimes the purpose of your content is to promote a product or a service. In that case, your content is selling something, with an overall goal to increase revenue. Other times CTAs may be as simple as a button that drives readers to further reading on a relevant topic. But without a CTA in your content, your audience will not know what to do with the information they read.
All email marketing should include buttons and links to provide a Call-to-Action. However, be sure to tie this CTA strategically into your content only if it's relevant. Ensure it's an authentic vibe for your business's communications. I recommend no more than two CTAs in an email. As I pleaded before, less really is more. Emails with too many CTAs might come off as too "salesy" and spammy, which could lead to readers unsubscribing from your email listserv. No one likes a pushy salesperson or continuously being sold something. Sometimes an informative email is all you need to keep their attention.
4. Consistent Communications
Be consistent with your contact and communications methods. It does not matter if a business sends an email newsletter out daily, weekly, monthly, or even annually, as long as the communication is consistent. If you tell an audience that you'll be going live on Instagram or hosting a Twitter chat every week, then do that. Also, let them know when you're not able to join because they are counting on you—keep your promise to continue providing content and host compelling conversations via social media.
5. Visually Appealing Newsletters
When it comes to reading materials today, the design is crucial. Everything, from the colors of your border to the font to the style of each paragraph––it matters. Establish your business's brand and create a unique logo to use on any published content or marketing materials. Again, be consistent. It's important to establish familiarity with readers and followers by using the same colors, fonts, and logos.
If you have different types of newsletters that you're sending to your audience, then take it a step further by altering their appearance while remaining true to your brand. For example, one of the email newsletters that you send less frequently may be more content-heavy, how about including a standard title to signify the differences. This might be different from the business's regular newsletter that you release to your broader digital community.
Additional design tips that are useful to consider is the psychology of color. For example, associated with urgency is the color red, as well as hunger. Think of McDonald's. Therefore, consider using red CTA buttons because of how highly effective they are in email marketing. Take advantage of white space and use pops of color sparingly to create a clean design.
6. Picture Perfect
Pictures are a great add-on; however, be mindful. Use images sparingly in email newsletters. Constant Contact recommends one to three images per email newsletter for optimal engagement. This pretty much correlates with my rule of thumb for content creation. Emails should contain 70% text and only 30% images. Yet again, less is more.
7. Email Segmentation
Tailor your email newsletter content for the different types of email subscribers, this is known as segmentation. Your CRM (customer relationship management is also known as MailChimp, Constant Contact, etc.) will allow you to do this strategically. You'll have general subscribers and from there segment your subscribers with specific interests that are relevant to your brand or business.
Remember targeting your business's ideal clients is more important than the number of email subscribers on your list. And content should be geared towards them, so send out a survey and ask what they're interested in learning. Sometimes when I subscribe to email newsletters, the confirmation asks me what topics or types of emails that I'd like to receive.
For example, Morning Brew sends a daily newsletter, but they also have separate newsletters for specific topics called "Emerging Tech Brew" and "Retail Brew." I like my morning inbox reads to be well-rounded, so I subscribed to them all. Understand, you're creating content for your readers, not for yourself. So, consider their needs when crafting any email newsletter.
There were lots of C's mentioned in today's post about content, such as captivating, communication, consistency, and color schemes. Email marketing is not about reaching the masses; it's about targeting potential clients. So, be clear in your purpose for communicating with them and be consistent in how often you generate content for your audience.
Subscribe to the Digital Orange Juice for juicy ideas and the people who fund them. You can find out about our next pitch competitions here. Also, be sure to join our new community The Venture League!