1. Build Your List
Building your list seems obvious, and it’s probably something you’re already attempting to do—after all, what’s the point in having an email list if you don’t have any subscribers?
But are you familiar with all the tactics you can use to build your email list? Here’s a quick checklist for reference:
Sign-up area on your website: Sidebar, box, top bar, or pop-up
Links to the newsletter sign-up page on your social media sites
Physical sign-up area for people to leave their addresses—works great for in-store marketing or if you visit a convention or conference
Leave an extra link to sign up at the bottom (or top) of every blog post
2. Proofread Before Sending
If you have people signing up for your newsletter, this means that they want to see what you have to say. That’s a pretty big deal.
But they’re going to hit “unsubscribe” pretty quickly if you aren’t clear and concise with your message. So, before you send your email out to your subscribers, you will want to make sure that you are presenting your best professional image.
Did you use spellcheck? Are you sure your grammar is correct? Try Grammarly.com’s online proofreading service or use their browser plug-in to automatically check for you as you type.
Did you include a clear message? Imagine you’re writing a cover letter for a job. You need to make sure your audience knows who you are, what you’re looking for, and how to get a hold of you. Translate this into your newsletter for the best effect!
3. Use Design Tools—Or Hire a Designer
Words are just one part of putting together a professional newsletter. Another important part is the newsletter design.
If you receive a newsletter that looks like a website from the 90s, you’re probably not going to be too enticed by the actual content. But if you receive a newsletter with a nice layout, quality images, and compelling text with a clear call to action, you’re going to be far more likely to click the links.
You can try using the free online image editor at Canva.com or use something such as Photoshop, if you’re familiar and comfortable with it.
The other option is to hire someone to do this work for you. You can easily connect with freelancers on sites such as Upwork or Fiverr. You will have to pay them for their work, but you can hire them on a per-gig basis and reach a reasonable agreement about payment before any work begins.
You can always create the layout for your email using an email marketing application, such as MailChimp or Aweber. They have lots of templates for you to choose from, so you don’t have to be an expert to send out a great-looking newsletter.
4. Make Emails Mobile Friendly
2/3 of all emails are opened on a smartphone or tablet. If you’re not ensuring that your email newsletters are optimized for mobile devices, then you’re leaving a huge segment of your subscribers completely in the dark.
5. Include a Call to Action
Although we mentioned this earlier, it is so important that it bears repeating: Your email needs a clear call to action.
The whole point of sending out an email newsletter is to get people to click the links and visit your site. Whether you’re running a special promotion or you want your subscribers to be aware of something new in your store, your email marketing efforts should help draw your customers where you want them to be.
So, be sure to include an easy way for them to find their way to your special offers—the call to action needs to be clear and strong and placed in an easy-to-see location.
Additionally, adding call to action buttons is extremely beneficial! To learn why these will boost your marketing efforts, check out the top 15 call-to-action buttons from the world's best mobile marketers!
6. Set Up Data Tracking
How are you going to know what’s working if you don’t track your data? The easy answer is that you won’t!
You can use Google Analytics on your website to see where referrals are coming from—for example, if you included a link to a special offer page on your website, and lots of people arrived there via your newsletter, you’ve done a great job!
You can also track data such as how many emails are opened, how many links were clicked, how many people unsubscribed, etc. You can do this through analytics or you can use an email marketing app such as MailChimp or Aweber to do this kind of work for you.
7. Test—And Then Test Again
Once you can see some trends in your analytics, it’s time to test. Does your audience like it when you include big images? Do they prefer simple text or do they like a fair amount of information before clicking? Which headline or call to action works best, version A or version B? Does it work better to send emails in the morning or evening? Weekdays or on weekends?
These are all questions you can ask yourself, and there are ways you can test these questions. You can set up a manual test by trying one method and then another. Keep track of the data you gathered from each test and compare it when you’re finished. Or, you can use built-in A/B testing modules in email marketing tools to have all this data tracked automatically.
Are there any other tips you’d like to offer? Let us know!