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Using eNewsletters in Your Content Marketing? Ideas for the New Year

Continuing our series on content marketing examples, we head next to eNewsletters. They are a staple for many marketers. According to the B2B Content Marketing: 2010 Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends report, 61% of B2B marketers use eNewsletters as a tactic.

Want to see some companies that are doing this well? Read on.

Live Report from the Future of Marketing

To further the notion that great content drives consumer engagement, Story Worldwide (my company) has created Live Report from the Future of Advertising, our free electronic newsletter. Each issue includes articles, blog posts, interviews and case studies from various sources that examine advertising in the post-advertising age and keep readers ahead of the marketing curve. Live Report from the Future of Advertising is sent twice monthly, and offers readers early-access to content so they can be the first to share it with their network.

The newsletter is expertly designed to look appealing and simple to navigate to the important information.  Custom imagery is used for lead items for visual appeal, but otherwise the newsletter is largely text-based and can be read from any computer or device. Articles are gathered from various bloggers and content sites, including a “Help Corner” with specific How-To posts (often from CMI). Unique content is also created specifically for the newsletter, thus giving readers first access.

There are a lot of things marketers can take from this example:

  • Spend the time and resources to create a newsletter that is both visually appealing and filled with useful content
  • Keep the self-promotion to a minimum (ideally, nil). Make sure the frequency fits with your audience’s desires
  • Make it very easy to sign up by asking for the bare minimum in terms of information (email address).

Contributed by Chiqui Cartagena

Lowe’s Creative Ideas

I have been a big fan of Lowe’s content marketing efforts for several years now (disclosure:  I have done some content work for Lowe’s with a former employer two years ago).  They fully understand harnessing the power of inspiration and education to engage their audiences.

Lowe’s eNewsletter works for many reasons:

  • It is always topical (based on season, month, etc.) and never tries to sell anything immediately; rather, they inspire and educate their audience with projects that are created from products in their stores.
  • The eNewsletter succeeds design-wise and editorially because it uses big, colorful photography and multiple points of entry, along with a comfortable mix of typefaces.  These all combine to portray Lowe’s as a neighbor, not necessarily a corporation.
  • Strategically, the eNewsletter comes at a comfortable frequency (again, seasonally and at most, monthly), not inundating opt-in recipients with daily ‘offers’ that plague their inbox’es.

The Creative Ideas content marketing platform, as a whole, is outstanding:  they integrate eNewsletters, social media, websites (static, flash, and video), printed magazines and community ‘live’ efforts seamlessly.  They even trumpet user-generated content in the form of projects customers have tackled and completed, giving shoppers a forum for showing off their personal accomplishments inspired by Lowe’s.

Results are proprietary, but I recall that those customers opting in and receiving Creative Ideas content efforts are more valuable customers to Lowe’s by a multiple (versus those who do not).  Their opt-ins are in the seven-figures.


Contributed by Keith Wiegold

The Fitz-e-News

The eNewsletter from one of my clients, Fitzgerald Photo Imaging,  is a great example of a business establishing their expertise and building goodwill through their content. Owner Paul Maietta invests in professional design and copywriting to ensure that his message supports his brand. The newsletter is archived on his website where it boosts SEO and continues to act as a reference to his business. Because he’s consistently delivering great content with very little spin about his own business, he enjoys an open rate well over 50%.

Contributed by Sarah Mitchell

M4B Marketing Newsletter

Week after week, Susan Oakes delivers more useful content than seems humanly possible. The M4B Marketing Newsletter provides weekly actions to keep your marketing on track. It’s a quick read leaving you plenty of time for Susan’s excellent blog.

Contributed by Sarah Mitchell

Do you know of any other eNewsletters that are well done? Share them in the comments below.