Some B2B marketers have tried to tell me the email newsletter is dead. I tell them they’re doing it wrong. Email newsletters are still a very effective lead nurturing and intelligence gathering tool if used properly. Here are 6 tips for making your email newsletters engaging to your readers. Big shout-out to Kathryn Honderd at Pardot for contributing to this article!
- Open with an explanation of what it is and why the recipient is receiving it using clear but conversational language. (rather than some big header with images that will attract negative attention from spam filters)
- Offer an unsubscribe link right at the beginning as well as at the bottom. (if they don’t want to receive it, you really don’t want to be sending it to them anyways do you?) Also make it clear if it’s a one-click unsubscribe. It’s sometimes hard to predict what will happen when you click an “unsubscribe” link. This is much better for your company’s email reputation than having people click “Report Spam” in their mail client!
- Give a clickable table of contents so the recipient can see all the information options at the beginning rather than having to scroll through the whole newsletter to see the articles.
- Introduce each content item, but don’t try to cram the whole article into newsletter. The ‘Read More’ links keep it streamlined, easy to scan, easy to navigate, and easy to read. (and track engagement!)
- Include 3-5 pieces of content from different categories and topics, and track relative interest. Feel free to re-purpose existing content (blog posts, popular recent Tweets, etc.) and curate other 3rd party content (blog posts, forum discussion threads, Q&A threads, etc.) to assemble a diverse set of content options without needing to write much from scratch.
- Use your email provider’s variable tag to include the person’s email address in the unsubscribe option. It’s just another way to make it easy and clear for the recipient to know what’s going on. (“Oh, it went to THAT account.” We all have multiple email addresses and list-serves that we receive email from. It’s nice to understand if you’re getting an email mailed to your company’s general inbox or to you specifically.)