Great Content Distribution Includes Email Newsletters
Great Content Distribution Includes Email Newsletters
Without a doubt, many of today’s email newsletters deliver some of the most targeted and useful information available. Done well, it is an important component of your marketing program.
Even though most people involved with marketing recognize their value, many of us maintain a love-hate relationship with email newsletters , regardless of format.
The hate element of the relationship probably comes from receiving too many email newsletters , most of which are average at best and at worst—really bad. Like potential clients, few things turn me off a business more than poorly prepared marketing communication, including email newsletters , with equally bad content.
Done badly, email newsletters can alienate and put off the very people you want to attract – potentially ideal clients.
Given the critical role that newsletters play in content marketing, it’s essential that every aspect of the newsletter be of the highest possible quality. The following best practices will help ensure the quality necessary to attract and satisfy loyal subscribers.
Know Enough About Your Audience
How much audience knowledge is enough? At the very least, a solid understanding of their industry and the issues that it faces is required. Ideally, you will know enough about the industry to understand ongoing challenges and emerging trends. This understanding includes knowing what your prospects want and what will solve their specific pains. It also ensures that members of your audience are the right people for your content.
Create Audience-Specific Relevant Content
Relevant content offers solutions to ongoing challenges. It also identifies potential opportunities and threats associated with emerging trends or new developments. Even better, the content offers suggestions for making the most of potential opportunities and minimizing the risk from possible threats.
Just because you have some one’s email address, it does not automatically mean that person is interested in your content…regardless of how good it is.
Get Permission to Send Email Newsletters
Few factors contribute more to the hate factor of email newsletters than indiscriminate blasts to every available email address. Not only is this against the terms of most online email marketing tools, it’s counter-productive to assume that it’s OK to add any names to your list without checking that they are interested in receiving your mass email newsletters.
Pushing unwanted newsletters can turn off potentially ideal clients, chasing them to the competition. It can also make the newsletter publisher look desperate and needy? I wouldn’t do business with such a a person…would you?
Best practice is to get permission first. Ask members of your target audience directly and unequivocally if they would like to receive your email newsletters. Allow these people the option to make their own decisions as to whether they are the right fit for your list and would benefit from what you share in your newsletter.
Your list is a valuable asset. You only want to add people who value you and what you do. What makes these people so valuable as individuals is that they represent potentially ideal clients or helpful network contacts.
Avoid Insincere Greetings
One of my favorite telephone features is call display. I only answer telephone calls when I recognize the name or number of the caller. Happily, gone are the days when I would answer the phone to a stranger, mispronouncing my name and asking how I am doing.
Unfortunately, the insincere greetings have become common in mass mail messaging.
Whenever I receive an email with a generic greeting, my immediate response is to hit the delete button and move on.
To get my attention, ignore the standard greeting and get straight to the point in your opening line. What benefit am I likely to enjoy from reading the rest of your email newsletters?
Keep Email Newsletters Short & Simple
Most of us spend too much time checking email. Unfortunately most of this time is wasted.
As a result, we all use filtering processes when checking email.
Typically, the first thing checked is who the email is from – do I know the sender? Then comes the subject – is it relevant to me?
Once these tests are passed, a quick scan to see how long it’s going to take to read. If it looks interesting, it can be tagged for future reference.
Whoops. How often do you return to read these emails…or anything else for that matter?
To increase the likelihood of having your email newsletters read, keep them short and sweet.
Lengthy articles are better formatted as web content or blog posts. Prepare this content as search engine juice for better SEO results and wider distribution of your great content.
The overall purpose of your email newsletters is to stimulate interest in your web and blog content. This will help drive traffic to website, which turn will improve the distribution of your content.
Useful Content NOT Shameless Self-Promotion
Like virtually everyone else, I hate spam. It’s bad enough having my email address added to the lists of people and businesses that I hardly know. But when bombarded with emails promoting how good the senders think they are, I can’t delete the message and block the sender fast enough.
Remember that spam is unwanted, unsolicited emails. More often than not these messages contain poorly prepared unhelpful information that is no value or interest to anyone other than the sender.
Useful information is helpful for potentially ideal clients. It’s all about getting the right content to the right people.
That’s why it’s important to ensure that the people on your list are actually interested in what you do. When you write your newsletter content, you know it’s useful to these people.
Opt-out As Easy As Opt-In
When people opt out, don’t take it personally. If they’ve opted out, they are not a potential client. They are not interested in what you do. They don’t belong on your list.
For easy opt-out, and overall administration for that matter use a good email marketing service. I use Mail Chimp, which works well for my purposes. There are at least 10 other good email marketing services available. Do some research and select the service that best meets your needs.
Simply put, the email newsletter is the tried and true tool that still delivers great results.
Unfortunately, many professionals fail to develop a dedicated newsletter for their content. From a marketing perspective, this represents a huge lost opportunity.
To stand above the crowd, your email newsletters need to be intriguing with significantly more value than your subscribers can get elsewhere.
There are a lot of effective technologies out there for building your email newsletters , each with its own advantages and disadvantages. The important thing is that you pick one and start building your list.
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