By Sarah Mitchell published October 25, 2010

7 Ways to Get More Value From Your eNewsletter

Email marketing is one of the most popular and effective ways for businesses to share their content and connect with customers. Besides being relatively easy, eNewsletters provide good analytics along with a low-cost way to help you manage customer engagement. Your subscriber list is a goldmine for your business – the bigger the list, the more potential to achieve desired results.

What’s more, marketers rate eNewsletters as one of the more effective content marketing tactics.

Over 61% of the respondents to the B2B Content Marketing: 2010 Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends report use eNewsletters and rate them as one of the most effective ways to distribute content. Only in-person events have a significant advantage over eNewsletters on the effectiveness front.

What can you do to encourage more people to subscribe to your eNewsletter?

Dedicate a page of your website to your newsletter

Something I don’t see often but I think is very effective is creating a dedicated page for your newsletter. Displaying an example is a great way to entice people to subscribe.

Recently, I encountered an excellent example where the design of a company newsletter is used to encourage people to subscribe. Master Photographer Geoff Fisher of Fisher Photography kicked off a new eNewsletter campaign as part of a complete rebranding exercise. His web designer, Ryan Briggs, included a sneak-peak of the customized newsletter he developed for Geoff.

By conveniently providing a sign-up form next to the body of the preview, visitors to Geoff’s website can easily add their name to his list. This technique is not limited to eNewsletters; a print newsletter can be easily dissected for success, as well.

Invest in custom design

It’s extremely easy to fire off a newsletter using a template or a wizard from your email marketing software, and that’s why everyone does it. However, consider investing in a professional design. Your content will stand out and lend a hand to your brand at the same time.

As you can see from the mock-up of the Fisher Photography newsletter above, the design has been developed specifically to support Fisher’s business. The dedicated website page also displays a description of each section. The benefits to this technique include:

  • Transparency – The visitor knows exactly what content to expect
  • Visual appeal – A custom design supports your brand and shows quality
  • Commitment – Posting your design demonstrates an intent to produce regular content
  • Excitement – An attractive teaser provokes people to want the real thing

Archive your past newsletters on your website

Not only is an archive of past newsletters an excellent way to extend the life of your content, but it also works wonders on your SEO.  Visitors to your website immediately understand your commitment to publishing good content when they can see a body of work all in one place.

Promote your newsletter like crazy

Of course, once you have your eNewsletter landing page set up, you want to start driving lots of traffic there. Here are some ideas.

Put your subscription form on your home page
It might seem obvious, but it’s surprising how many people bury their form deep in their website or don’t have it on their website at all. And, remember to point people to your landing page to learn more.

Put a subscription form on your social media profiles
Do your Facebook fans know you have a newsletter? Why not let them sign up right on your page?

Add a link to your subscription form at the end of every blog post
If you’ve got a reader who made it all the way to the end of your post, it’s probably because they found value in what you’ve had to say. Chances are they’re going to want more of the same. Why not convert them immediately?

Add a sharing widget on your eNewsletters
If you want people to promote your newsletter for you, make it easy on them by including a sharing widget. Give people the option of distributing it on any channel they want and there’s no telling where your content may end up.

Getting your newsletter into as many hands as possible doesn’t have to be a challenge. Creating opportunities to extend the life of your newsletter and encourage new readers is easier than you may have guessed. Don’t think of your newsletter as a static document with a limited shelf-life. A  collective body of well-constructed, beautifully designed and strategically managed newsletters are an asset to your business. Consider the different channels you use to promote your business and ensure your newsletter is referenced in every place. Before long, you’ll be striking gold.

How do you squeeze more value out of your newsletter?

Author: Sarah Mitchell

Sarah Mitchell is Head of Content Strategy at Lush Digital Media and founder of Global Copywriting. She develops content marketing and community engagement strategies for clients in a variety of industries. Sarah works in Perth, Western Australia and frequently speaks on topics related to Content Marketing and Social Media. She's also the Australian editor for Chief Content Officer magazine. Follow her on Twitter: @globalcopywrite.

Other posts by Sarah Mitchell

  • Anonymous

    Great reminders. I’m a little rusty on my newsletter but pretty caught up and jazzed now thanks to you Sarah. Thank you for doing that!!

    • http://www.globalcopywriting.com/ globalcopywrite

      You’re welcome and thanks for your enthusiastic comment. I was a little late getting on the newsletter bandwagon. My clients convinced me of the value of a newsletter and I’m glad they did. I particularly like the idea Ryan had to put a sneak-peak of the format on the website.

  • http://www.globalcopywriting.com/ globalcopywrite

    Hi Keri,

    You’ve made an incredibly important point. More and more people are getting their content on mobile devices, primarily their telephone. Making a newsletter easy to digest in that format is going to be increasingly important.

    Thanks for your comment.

  • Cbwhittemore

    Sarah, these are lovely recommendations. Thank you.

    Best,
    CB

  • Sunny Morris

    super helpful! i’m in the process of creating our company’s newsletter and this is great great info. thanks.

    • http://www.globalcopywriting.com/ globalcopywrite

      Good luck with a big job, Sunny. One thing I keep in the back of my mind when I’m writing newsletters is to remind myself it’s “email” not “me-mail”. In other words, I try to keep all the content focused on the reader. It can be hard with corporate clients. They want to make it all about them – our new accounts, our latest awards, our new products – but if you can convince them to change the perspective I think it works a lot better. Of course, you still talk about all that stuff but only in terms of how the potential reader might benefit.

      Thanks for stopping by.

      Cheers,
      Sarah

  • http://www.photographyperth.net.au/ Perth photography

    Really Helpful post. I never really thought about a newsleter until now. You have helped shed some light on to how I can use this for Photography. Thank you.