The Most Important Email Newsletter Dos and Don’ts

Email marketing produces an average of
174% more conversions
than social media and results in
28.5% higher ROI
, compared to direct mail.

While newsletters are one of the most common ways to distribute
company updates, they can be difficult to do well. You have to
worry about creating compelling copy and CTAs, designing an email
that fits multiple devices, developing clickable topics, and
more.

If you’re ready to start putting together an impactful
campaign, take a look at the following email newsletter dos and
don’ts, so you can get started on the right foot.

What is an email newsletter?

Before you get started, it’s important to understand what an
is and how it differentiates from other communications. A
newsletter is a communication between your business and email list
that contains company news, product updates, and upcoming
promotions. Think of your newsletter as having an expiration date,
as the information is only relevant for a short period.

Newsletters are a great way to engage your subscribers and get
them excited about what’s happening within your company. However,
they need to be sent out consistently to be effective. Most
companies send monthly, quarterly, or annual
newsletters—delivered in various designs and layouts—to their
email list.

You may send daily promotional emails or automated transactional
emails that are specific to an action or product. Newsletters, on
the other hand, are more about updating your company’s email list
than trying to convert more customers with a hard sell.

Why should you have a newsletter?

With over
four billion active email accounts
around the world, there’s
a huge opportunity for marketers to build awareness around their
brand with email newsletters. A newsletter gives you the chance to
inform your subscribers about your brand while also driving them to
take action. Of all digital strategies, an email newsletter could
have the biggest impact because:

  • You can consistently connect with your customers and
    distinguish yourself from competitors. The more trust your
    customers have in the brand, the more loyalty they’ll have to
    keep coming back.
  • It offers you a way to send personalized messages to your email
    list with the ability to customize features like the subject line,
    content, and location.
  • Email newsletters drive traffic to your website. This will not
    only improve your SERP positions, but also provide a way for your
    subscribers to learn more about your brand on your website or blog
    post.
  • While newsletters aren’t offering a hard sell with messaging,
    they can drive sales. The newsletter can contain product highlights
    or even special promotions.

The list of newsletter benefits is almost endless. As consumers
are more linked with brands on digital platforms, developing a
newsletter allows you to stay connected and provide value to your
subscribers.

Every email marketer’s top newsletter dos and don’ts

Ready to get your newsletter started? What are the best
practices you should follow (and avoid)? Let’s take a look at our
top
dos and don’ts
of newsletters that you need to implement
before pushing send on your next campaign.

Newsletter dos

While there isn’t enough time to mention every newsletter best
practice, let’s take a look at the top four to help you get
started.

1. Send targeted emails.

Your newsletter is a great opportunity to send dynamic content
based on your subscriber’s past actions and preferences. For
example, if you’re sending a monthly newsletter about top
restaurants in America, separate the content by geographic
locations, so the content’s relevant to each subscriber.
Personalized emails record
188% open rates
, compared to 12.1% for emails without
personalization.


Field Mag sends personalized newsletter

Source:
Really Good Emails

2. Include clear CTA buttons.

When a subscriber opens your newsletter, not only should they
find the content valuable, but they should also immediately know
what action to take next. Whether it’s reading an additional blog
post, downloading a new whitepaper, or visiting your website,
include a bold CTA button that links them to their next
destination. The CTA button should be front and center of the email
design and have straightforward copy to set expectations, such as
“Learn more,” “Download now,” or “Register today.”


Elementor includes CTA button in newsletter

Source:
Really Good Emails

3. Optimize for mobile.

With over
2.2 billion mobile email users
worldwide, optimizing your email
for mobile devices is crucial. You need to develop a responsive
newsletter that has a width of 600px to ensure it appears correctly
with every screen size and email service provider. You also need to
keep the
mobile design
in mind by creating clear CTAs, using concise
copy, and planning for an “image off” experience.


MDSaves optimizes their newsletter for Android 8

Source:
Really Good Emails

4. Encourage sharing.

The goal of a newsletter—or any email campaign for, that
matter—is to grow an engaged list of subscribers who are loyal to
your brand. After all, the money is in the list, and the more your
subscribers engage with your message, the more likely they’ll be
to purchase your products or services. Use social sharing buttons
in your newsletter to give recipients the option to share your
content and promotions with others to grow your email list.


 Life House Hotels includes social share buttons in newsletter

Source:
Really Good Emails

Newsletter don’ts

Now that you know a few best practices for developing your
newsletter, it’s time to discover which bad habits to avoid. The
fact is that one wrong email can cost you subscribers and
conversions, both of which could lower your brand reputation.

Write vague subject lines or preview text.

Your email’s subject line is your subscriber’s first
impression of your email and could be the difference between a
click and landing in the trash bin. In fact,
35% of recipients
open emails based on the subject line alone.
You want to develop a subject line that’s catchy and concise,
with five words or fewer. The average consumer scans their inbox
quickly, so your subject line needs to grab their attention and set
expectations for what the content contains.

Forget about accessibility.

With over
2.2 billion people
living with a form of vision impairment,
forgetting about newsletter accessibility would be alienating
members of your target audience. To develop an accessible
newsletter design, consider the following elements:

  • Avoid relying on images or color to convey a message
  • Make sure text stands out on a contrast/color background
  • Include a logical reading order like left-to-right and
    top-to-bottom
  • Use alt text for images
  • Write informative text on links
  • Order heading elements in code

Send without testing first.

Before you click “send” on your newsletter, make sure you
test it across multiple devices and email service providers.
Oftentimes, the email appears in the inbox much differently than
designed, and email providers may block certain elements entirely.
You should also verify formatting issues, broken links, and typos.
Many email platforms have a “test” option available.

Ignore the metrics.

After every newsletter campaign, it’s crucial to analyze the
metrics, so you know where you need to improve next time. Most
email platforms provide a full suite of analytics like:

  • Open rate
  • Click-through rate
  • Delivery rate
  • Bounce rate

If you’re looking to dive into analytics, consider A/B testing
your newsletters as well to determine the most effective subject
lines, CTA buttons, format, and more. Email marketing is all about
continuous improvement, and A/B testing allows you to learn what
your audience likes.

Wrap up

Email newsletters can be a great way to communicate with your
subscribers and move them further down your sales cycle, all while
providing valuable content. By following our list of dos and
don’ts, you’ll be on your way to developing successful
newsletters that produce good results.

When creating your newsletter, remember to do the following:

  • Keep your content personalized and designed for your target
    audience.
  • Include bold CTA buttons that drive your subscribers to action
    without being too pushy.
  • Develop a responsive design that looks great on all mobile
    devices, screen sizes, and email service providers.
  • Encourage your subscribers to share your content with social
    icons to grow your network.

Now that you’ve learned newsletter dos and don’ts, it’s
time to start creating your email newsletter. Campaign Monitor can
help you every step of the way to ensure you’re following best
practices and increase engagement rates. Sign
up
for free today!

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The Most Important Email Newsletter Dos and Don’ts