One of the advantages of email marketing is its low cost compared to other marketing channels. There are no printing or postage costs. No fees to be paid in exchange for exposure on billboard, magazine, or radio.
The creation of an email newsletter is a major decision. Starting one without the proper infrastructure and commitment to sustain could end up doing more damage than good.
Once your email newsletter is launched, your recipients will expect communication from you. If you fail to deliver that expectation, it could lead to a backlash as your customers could question your reliability or commitment.
The infrastructure needs to include content and graphic sources plus the capacity of sending the email newsletter. The commitment can be eased with a timetable that details when content and graphic need to be concluded, when the newsletter needs editing and finally sent.
In choosing your send date, think about other newsletter that your readers might receive. You don’t want to become just another newsletter in the inbox or worse, ending up in junk mail.
We recommend sending at a time of month when there is less traffic. You could send your email newsletter at the end of the month because most companies will send at the beginning or middle of the month. Experiment and see if there is a change in readership results.
Six steps on creating a successful email newsletter
Email Newsletter Content
The success or failure of your email newsletter depends on the relevance and quality of the content. If your website is entertaining, your newsletter needs to entertain. If it is educational, your content needs to educate.
I personally do not believe in using newsletter for self-promotional purpose. Reader will rapidly grow tired reading commercials. Your newsletter is a service to your customers and needs to be written from the perspective on what they need, not from the view of how it can serve you. Having an email newsletter that serves your customers, it will serve you too.
Frequency of Email Newsletter
Decide how often are you going to send your newsletter. There are two considerations before you make your decision.
First, how often would your customer base engage with your newsletter. If your industry is flooded with newsletters, you may conclude there is an excess of reading material. A quarterly newsletter might be more appropriate. On the other hand, if you notice an absence of other newsletter or a hunger for information, this could lead you to conclude a bi-weekly newsletter would create an excellent opportunity.
Second consideration is your own capacity. You do not want to create an expectation for an email newsletter that exceed your production capacity. The number of newsletters you can produce each month needs to be the underlying driver to the decision how often your newsletter is released.
Designing Your Email Newsletter
The look of your newsletter is crucial as it represents your company. More importantly, it determines how people receive your newsletter and if it’s interesting enough for them to open and read it. A well-designed newsletter includes clear content, relevant images and consistent with your company’s identity.
Your newsletter is an extension of your company and the personality should represent the image you want to portray in your industry.
Your database is the list of people to whom you send your newsletter. The list should be extracted from your customer base, prospective customers, and your industry influencers.
You should make sure that everyone receiving your email newsletter has given permission. There should also be an effortless way to unsubscribe from your list. Your newsletter can be sent by post, but the costs of printing and delivery makes email a cost effective and more realistic option.
Email newsletter can be sent in HTML or Plain Text. You should send the format based on customer preferences. Modern email software is capable of handling HTML formats. The choice of email format does not influence the content and frequency of the newsletter.
Marketing Your Email Newsletter
Your email newsletter needs marketing support so that it can reach out to a wider audience and better serve your company as a marketing tool. The support could be as simple as a sign-up option on your website to advertising and dedicated events.
We highly recommend testing your newsletter before sending to your entire database. You can benefit from the feedback of your test group and send out the best newsletter possible.
Select a random group of 50-200 people to send your test newsletter. Include a brief questionnaire asking for reviews on the look and content. Once you get their response and incorporate their comments, you know the newer version is clos to the needs and wants of your target market.
Your email newsletter can be an excellent way to reach out to your customers. But embark on the email newsletter only if you have the resources and commitment to sustain. When done properly, it is a powerful and continuing tool for exposure and reinforcement of your expertise.
GetResponse claims to be an easy-to-use marketing platform and has gained a formidable reputation in the industry. Feature-wise, they offer more than most other email marketing services. From simple A/B testing to landing pages and video email marketing.
The web-based system does not require any installation. It works on a web browser. Feature-wise, they offer more than most other email marketing services. From A/B testing to landing pages, webinars, and surveys. Together, these tools provide an all-in-one marketing solution at an affordable price.
GetResponse allows you to create a variety of newsletters through its drag-and-drop editor, while advance users can use the HTML source editor. There are over five hundred pre-built templates which users can customize to suit their business and branding.
The GetResponse drag-and-drop editor allows you to customize the entire email newsletter including spacing, fonts, colors, and more. There is even over one thousand stock images to create professional and engaging newsletters.
It is essential that your email newsletter is responsive and looks great across all devices. The preview function on the editor page allows you to see your email on web-based, desktop and popular devices.
The spam check feature helps improve your email deliverability rates and ensure your newsletters reaches your subscribers’ inbox. It provides actionable insights to help improve your newsletter.
When your newsletter is ready, there are several options to optimize delivery. You can send immediately for time sensitive emails or schedule for later. There is a perfect timing feature that analyze subscriber behavior and sends your email at the optimal time to help increase open and click-through rates.
Email List Management
GetResponse offers several options to add contacts. Users can upload a file, connect services such as Zendesk, Salesforce or Google. Contacts can be added manually by entering line by line of contacts.
After import, contacts can be segmentize into groups using search filters to create targeted campaigns based on fields, tags, or customer actions. The filters are dynamic, and subscribers are added to the defined group when they meet the required conditions.
The custom fields allows you to further segmentize your subscribers such as country, currency, preferences, gender, and even special dates (birthdays, anniversary…etc). The custom fields can be added to signup forms, which will help you build extremely specific targeted lists.
GetResponse has several options to create forms to help build your contact list. The List Builder Wizard has over five hundred templates targeting various industry, seasonality, and objectives.
Each form has a “thank you” page to guide your users once a form is completed. Templates can be customized using pre-defined fields, custom fields, and styling options. Once completed, you can embed the form to your website to start collecting your subscribers.
GetResponse includes an analytics section that helps you analyze your newsletters and subscribers. The standard metrics tracked include open rates, click-throughs and unsubscribes.
The software can track ROI of your email marketing through website conversations. You can travk sales, sign up or even website visits because of your email campaign. You can also compare one newsletter against another to gain better understanding of the results and your audience.
Is GetResponse Right For You?
GetResponse is perfect for businesses that want a comprehensive set of online marketing tools. The marketing automation is excellent, plus the inclusion of webinars, landing pages and A/B testing, makes engagement with your subscribers much easier.
How To Sign Up
Sign up for Get Response on their website. Try for 30 days free.