8 Steps to the Perfect Newsletter Campaign, and 8 Tips to Help You
An effective newsletter can boost the outcomes of a digital marketing strategy. However, it is not something that can be left to chance. To maximize the benefits of sending newsletters, you’ll need to develop your newsletter content project plan.
The newsletter planning steps we describe in this article should ensure your newsletter campaigns achieve their goals.
The benefits of implementing a newsletter project plan
Newsletters can be used for many reasons. As part of a big-picture email marketing strategy, an email newsletter can be used to achieve a variety of goals. As you build your emailing list, you should see the benefits of implementing a newsletter project plan escalate. These are some of the key benefits of implementing a newsletter campaign:
Generates constant traffic to your website
A newsletter campaign is one of the most effective ways to generate traffic to your website. You can use it as an alternative to social media marketing, or as an addition to it to market to your target audience. More traffic helps to drive your website’s ranking and visibility.
Allows you to build a stronger relationship with your leads
Newsletters are a wonderful way to build relationships with your customers and to share information about new products or services.
It’s cost-effective compared to other marketing strategies
A well-written newsletter with high-quality content can be one of the most effective marketing strategies you have, and one of the most cost-effective to reach out to existing customers and prospects alike. You’ll find that newsletters have high open rates, making them an affordable way to connect with customers on a personal level. Especially when you send your newsletters using an email marketing system.
Makes it easy to measure performance and results
A newsletter campaign can be used to measure the success of your email marketing strategy. You can see how many people opened and clicked on links, or unsubscribed from your list. You can also see if anyone opened the email on their mobile device or desktop computer.
8 steps to develop a newsletter plan
It’s not that difficult to develop a newsletter plan, but to be successful you must follow a tried and tested process. Here are 8 steps to help you get started.
Step #1: Set out your goals
Set out goals for your newsletter campaign and make sure they are clear and measurable. You should be able to answer these questions:
What is the purpose of this newsletter campaign?
Who is your target audience?
What do I want them to do after reading our newsletter?
Step #2: Find the best time to send
It is essential to find out when your audience is most receptive to receiving your newsletter, so you can maximize its potential and avoid sending it at the wrong time.
Step #3: Choose the right email management software
You choose the right email management software. There are plenty of free options available, but if you want a more robust service with advanced features and integrations, then it might be worth considering paid options.
Step #4: Build a contact list
The most important thing about the contact list is that it should be relevant and targeted. The more targeted your contact list, the more likely you will achieve your goals. A contact list can be generated by using different methods such as email marketing, social media, or building an email list from your website (for example, subscriptions to your newsletter).
Step # 5: Create your newsletter
Quality content is essential. Each piece of content you include in your email newsletters should be relevant to your audience. People will look forward to reading your newsletter, and your open rates will steam ahead if you provide content that is interesting, entertaining, and informative.
To create the type of content that will attract, retain, and convert customers, you should:
- Develop content guidelines
- Use a clear and consistent email template
- Keep the mobile experience in mind
- Write an appealing subject line for each newsletter
- Create engaging content (as you do for blog posts)
- Include click-worthy calls-to-action
Step 6: Perform QA before sending
Before sending your newsletter, you should always perform quality assurance (QA). You should check the content, ensuring it is error-free, readable, and attractive. All links should work properly. You should also ensure that you send to only those people who wish to receive your newsletter.
Step #7: Identify and track your metrics
A newsletter plan is not just about sending a newsletter every month or week. It’s more than that. A good plan will be measurable and measured for success. You’ll need to be sure which metrics are most important to you. The most common to measure are:
- Open rate
- Click rate
- Conversions and/or revenue per click
Step 8: Analyze your results and optimize your campaigns accordingly
To develop a successful newsletter strategy, it is crucial to analyze your results and optimize campaigns accordingly. This is a continual process, too — audiences and markets are continually evolving, and so should your newsletter.
8 Tips to develop a successful newsletter content plan
As you develop your newsletter strategy, these tips will help to keep your plan on track and your newsletters to achieve the goals you set for them:
Start with a welcome campaign
A welcome campaign is often the first touchpoint with your new customers, and it should provide them with valuable information about your company, product, or service — in this case, the newsletter subscription. An effective welcome campaign can consist of:
An introduction (a little about your company, products, and services, and why the reader should sign up for the newsletter)
An invitation to connect
An incentive to sign up
A thank you (for reading and signing up)
The welcome campaign should be designed in such a way that it is relevant to the customer and their needs so as not to come across as intrusive, pushy, or manipulative.
Analyze and segment your email list(s)
Segmenting your email lists will help to ensure that you send the most relevant content to your target audience. As you build your email list, you should consider each connection by factors that include:
Effective segmentation of your email list will help you to keep your subscription numbers high and improve conversion rates.
Implement a personalized approach
Throughout the process of segmentation, you should seek to discover commonalities that allow you to personalize your approach. For example:
What topics most interest your subscribers?
What are their preferred mailing frequency and times?
What types of content and content subjects to they prefer?
What is their stage in the sales cycle?
Make sure that you set your email system to send your emails addressed to subscribers by name, and not ‘Dear Subscriber’.
Craft specific language for your target audience
The language you use in content is a reflection of who you are, and the people that you are trying to reach. If you want to create content that resonates with your target audience, it’s important to craft language for them. This means using words and phrases that they will understand and feel connected to. It also means using words that will resonate with their values and goals.
Establish a relationship before trying to sell
Establishing a relationship is the first step to selling. It is important to get to know your customer and find out what they want before you try to sell them anything. You can use social media, your blog posts, email campaigns, and your newsletters to develop trust — the vital component in a customer relationship.
Interact with your recipients
There are many ways to interact with your newsletter recipients. You can send them surveys, set up an online chat, and send them links to other content on your website. All of these will help you to gain better insights into what they want from you.
Keep your CTAs simple
It is important to keep the CTAs in your newsletters and email campaigns simple so that the user can easily understand what they are supposed to do. CTAs should be clear, concise, and specific. Make interacting with you and doing what the call-to-action requests as easy as possible.
Ask your list for feedback
One of the best ways to improve the effectiveness of your newsletters is by asking your audience for feedback on what they want to read. You can do this by including a link at the end of each newsletter that says, “What would you like me to write about next?”
Other ways you can ask for feedback include:
Sending out surveys periodically
Asking for feedback when someone subscribes or unsubscribes
Asking for feedback on every campaign you send
The bottom line
A newsletter is a powerful marketing tool that can drive traffic to your site and increase engagement with your audience. This article should help you to design an effective newsletter strategy plan, but if there are any questions you feel we have left unanswered, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
If you’d prefer to dive straight into newsletter content planning, and learn how we help our clients to accelerate and excel in digital and email marketing, click here to book a live demo of BlabberJax in action.