Does your business send a newsletter to its customers? Or have you been thinking about starting a newsletter but don’t know where to begin? The debate of whether to send a newsletter or not is a common one.
The biggest challenge is the thought of writing something your customers may or may not read. No one wants to “waste time” on something that isn’t guaranteed to be profitable. And while many companies are doing newsletters completely wrong, there are a few things you can do to improve the readability of your content and utilize a newsletter to your business’s advantage.
For starters, writing a newsletter allows you to build credibility with your past, potential, and current customers and employees. You are exemplifying that you are a knowledgeable expert in your field. Additionally, sending information for free is communicating to your readers that you are dedicated to helping them. By providing free value, you are expressing you want to work with customers for their overall benefit, not yours. In a similar way, writing a newsletter can remind your customers what you can provide and can be used as a tool to connect with them on a regular basis.
In our fast-paced world, it can be difficult for our customers to find time to read everything demanding their attention. The benefits of a company newsletter are easy to understand; however, it can seem overwhelming to know where to begin. We wanted to provide you some tips to ensure your company newsletter will “break through the noise.”
5 tips for a quality newsletter:
1. Set goals and stick to them
Identifying the mission of your company newsletter is vital. What is your incentive to write one? Just because your competitors send out newsletters, and you don’t want to fall behind is not the proper mindset. Setting specific goals will help you write the best newsletter for your business. By pinpointing your specific objectives, you can easily determine if your content is on track or not.
What do you want your customers to do after they read your newsletter? Do you want them to share it on their social media accounts? Do you want them to be intrigued to read your blog? Are you hoping to be educational or inspirational? Are you trying to attract new customers or build stronger relationships with the ones you already have? These are the questions you should ask in an effort to prioritize your goals. Once you have your goals in order, you will have direction for your content.
2. Remember, it’s about your customers, not you
Once you have your goals in place, make sure you know your target audience. How can you write engaging content if you don’t know who you are writing for? Dig deep and determine their demographics, their interests, their problems, etc. By taking the focus off yourself (or more specifically, what you want to sell), you can focus on what your customers are looking for. Do the research to find out what questions they have or the solutions they are looking for.
Also, does your business have any exciting news that would benefit customers? (Always verify that the news is relevant!) Are there fresh industry insights you can share? And for fun, are there any contests they can participate in? Always think about what your customers want to read and push yourself to create content that adds value to their lives. We want them to be glad they opened your newsletter and have them anticipating the next one!
3. Be consistent
This may seem obvious, but it is HUGE if you want to have an effective newsletter. Consistency is key to many aspects of a newsletter. It is important to have a consistent design as the color scheme, and images you use will define your company. Having inconsistencies in your design will send mixed messages and make it difficult for customers to identify your business.
Not only must the design be consistent, but also the frequency of which the newsletters are sent. If a customer starts to expect a newsletter from you at a particular time, it is vital you meet this expectation. When first starting a newsletter, I would recommend issuing them quarterly or bimonthly. Once your company newsletter begins to gain traction and you feel more comfortable, you can start to publish them more often.
4. Make sure to proofread
Having proper grammar is something that is expected. Customers will not talk about your use of commas, who and whom, or your and you’re unless you are using them incorrectly. Do not overlook the importance of quality writing. If there are grammatical mistakes in your company newsletter, it discredits your level of professionalism and limits your credibility.
Rough Draft Solutions is committed to creating content worth reading. Feel free to check out our other blog posts related to the importance of proofreading:
5. Test it out before you send it out
There are many resourceful marketing programs such as MailChimp and Campaign Monitor that allow you to design and send newsletters to your customers. Consider using one of these programs as they will help you track your progress. These programs will give you valuable information such as the number of many emails delivered, how many bounced back, how many people opened the newsletter, and how many people forwarded it to their friends.
Most of these programs will allow you to send a copy to yourself as a test before you formally issue it to everyone. When looking at this copy of the newsletter make sure to view it as your customer would. Does it look the same as you designed it? Do all the links direct you to where they are supposed to? Is there anything missing? Make sure to send it to a few people to look it over before you send it to your list of clientele. (The worst thing ever is clicking “send” and promptly noticing a typo in your headline… don’t be that person.)
Writing a company newsletter is a powerful way to connect with your customers - if it is done correctly. Though it can seem overwhelming to get started, we are confident you will get the hang of it in no time. And if you put your heart into it and follow these tips, it won’t take long to realize the benefits of a quality newsletter.