Email marketing is still one of the most effective tools for many businesses and below I have listed some of the reasons why and newsletter could benefit your business.
It’s hard to believe it, but not everyone is on social media. Yes, there are people still out there (my husband included!) who do not use Facebook. I know it seems impossible to imagine some times.
Therefore, when deciding on your content strategy you have to consider your market and your target audience and how best to communicate with them. Even those of us on social media, also quite like some ‘direct communication’ and a newsletter, beautifully presented and arriving regularly in my inbox, direct to me, is certainly one of those tools.
If you do send out regular marketing materials via email, such as a newsletter, or wish to, it is also a good time to consider how you will do this going forward, in light of the new data protection rules – namely ‘GDPR’. My understanding is that as long as you have a record of people’s wish to receive your emails and have a very obvious opt-out or unsubscribe button or link you should be ok. However, it is certainly worth investigating and checking. It doesn’t seem worth the risk not to.
So, with that take care of…what are the benefits of writing and distributing a newsletter for your business?
If a customer has purchased a product from you or used your services then they are likely to want to hear from you, rather than feel like they were simply a ‘pound sign’. Newsletters are a fantastic way of keeping communication lines open. You can offer business updates; news of new products and new ranges; explanations of changes within your business and offer a reminder of contact details, opening hours and services available. The list goes on and on. This makes you customers feel ‘in the know’. Your ‘arrival’ in their inbox also acts as a little reminder of your business’ existence and how to get back in touch should they want to.
Consider offering special offers exclusively to newsletter / email subscribers too! Make them feel extra special.
Another advantage of newsletters is the opportunity to drive readers back to your website. By providing hyperlinks throughout the newsletter (if you don’t know how to do this, get in touch!), you can help customers to find their way to interesting, new and updated areas of your website. This could be your latest blog post, your newest product, your contact me page or simply your home page.
In the world of ‘search engine optimisation’ every click helps!
A newsletter is also a wonderful way of showing you care and adding value to the service you offer. If you have a product-based business, consider including helpful guidance or tips on how to look after, use or maintain the longevity of a product.
If you offer a service, consider offering ‘after care’ advice or asking questions about how people found their experiences and talk about the experiences of others.
A newsletter is a wonderful place to share links to a latest blog post – illustrating your expertise, passion and knowledge. You can share testimonials too – again ensuring your positive reputation is highlighted.
Quick, widespread and direct
A newsletter is probably the quickest direct marketing tools available. No waiting for postal deliveries or the leaflets to be dropped. You can schedule them in advance or email them out immediately.
You can create templates to help you produce newsletters which are consistent and breed familiarity, helping to enhance your brand and reinforcing your story. Using online tools such as Mailchimp, you can send newsletters to all of your customers (those who have agreed to be emailed, of course!) or just a segment of them, depending on how you divide your email list. You can be really specific in who you email and what about, if you want to or you can keep it very general. It is is probably worth doing a bit of both. Happily, this is much easier to achieve digitally than creating several different types of notes, letters or leaflets and addressing and posting them to chosen individuals.
I hope this is obvious but your newsletter should reflect your brand in its entirety. Your use of colours, logo, images, tone and ‘style’ should be consistent with other marketing tools, such as your website, social media pages and print advertising. All of this helps to enhance brand awareness and acts as a gentle reminder of your business. Being ‘reminded’ can also help to generate referrals. Your clients see your email, are reminded of your wonderful brand and fantastic products and just happen to mention it to the next person they see next…perfect!
If you like the ‘personal touch’ and this reflects your brand, newsletters are really easy to personalise too. It may be very simple, but I think it is also very effective when an email is addressed directly to you, even if it simply says ‘Hi Kate’ in the opening paragraph.
Environmentally-friendly and cost-effective
Finally sending an email (vs getting something printed and delivered) is a great eco option!
Depending on the number of newsletters you are sending out (including number per year, as well as number of recipients) for many small businesses it is also completely free to do, apart from your time writing and sending them, of course.
There is no upfront const and all of your recipients have indicated an interest in your business and therefore newsletters are also targeted marketing – not random.
By sending a newsletter and ‘checking in’ with your customers it could also just ‘tip the balance’ when they see the newsletter to help them make up their mind to buy from you rather than a competitor – after all you have made the effort to get in touch. A newsletter really can convert a lead in to a sale.
Best times to send
I could write a whole blog post about when is the best time to send out your newsletter and why and the importance of researching and analysing it. However, to save me, I came across this great evidence-based article about best times to send emails, so take a look at this instead – https://coschedule.com/blog/best-time-to-send-email/ – and I’ll save my post for another day!
The power of newsletters
Don’t overlook the powers of newsletters and the difference a new email in a person’s inbox may make to your business.
If you want help with the content or a template, get in touch.