A regular and high-quality email newsletter is pretty important to the success of any email marketing strategy. However, not all newsletters are created equally.
The reality is that your audience is most likely already receiving dozens (or even hundreds!) of emails in their inbox every single day— not surprisingly, the vast majority of these newsletters quickly end up archived or in the trash bin.
So, how do you make your newsletter stand out from the rest?
Although there’s no single formula for creating a perfect newsletter every time—we think that if you follow a few basic rules, you’ll get pretty darn close!
Let’s cut to the chase. If you want to avoid your newsletter ending up in email purgatory, there are some common mistakes that you should avoid.
Generic Subject Lines
This may seem obvious, but we cannot stress enough how important having a strong subject line is.
If you open up your inbox and you have hundreds of emails, you’re going to start by deleting irrelevant items before you ever read anything. At this stage, you only have a split second to capture your readers’ attention.
If your reader sees an email with the subject “Weekly Newsletter”, it’s highly unlikely that they will bother reading it. A generic subject line does not give any clues as to what the email contains and does not give your reader a reason to open it.
This does not mean that your subject line needs to be long-winded and super detailed, either. Instead, think short, fun, catchy. You should be run A/B tests to determine what style of copy gets the highest open rates. You can even try using an emoji! Most importantly, keep your branding and audience in mind and think about what they would be interested in reading.
Depending on the email service that you’re using, try a tool like Phrasee to utilize AI in your subject lines.
Poorly Written Content
We’ve all had that “oh no” moment… you finish your email, click send, and suddenly a previously invisible typo is glaring at you in all of its hideous glory. It happens to everyone.
One tiny error is no big deal (even if you have to repeat that over and over in your head to convince yourself), and chances are your audience will not notice.
However, you should avoid sending content that is poorly written and chock full of mistakes. This reeks of unprofessionalism and can make your customers lose trust in your brand.
Be sure to send emails that have clear, engaging content that is grammatically sound. If you need a little extra help, you can ask a friend or colleague to proofread your document and/or check it with editing software such as Grammarly.
Over-doing Links and Calls to Action (CTA)
Links and CTA’s are essential assets of your newsletter. Your audience wants and expects them.
If the reader is interested in your brand, they will want to know what to do next or where they can get more information. Avoid overwhelming your reader by leaving out superfluous links and CTA’s—stick only to the relevant ones.
A good rule of thumb: have one main link that your email is driving readers to click. But place that link in your email at least two times. Ex: a button, a text link, and an image link.
Appeal to a Specific Audience
Trying to make your brand appeal to EVERYONE is a common mistake that many businesses make. In reality, if you write about very general “catch-all” topics you may fail to capture anyone’s attention at all.
When writing your newsletter, try sticking to specific niche subjects that are intimate with your brand and that your customers can truly relate with. If your business caters to multiple audiences, such as college students AND young parents, write separate newsletters for each group.
If you’re ready to take your newsletter game to the next level and send out carefully curated newsletters for your audience try a tool like rasa.io. The AI software analyzes your audience’s interaction with each newsletter. With every click, future newsletters become more and more personally curated for the individual. It shaves hours off of email compilation time and boosts email open and click rates by segmenting to a group of one.
Use a Template
There are countless newsletter templates available on the web. The templates that you use don’t have to be overly flashy or creative. All you need is a simple and aesthetically pleasing design.
Here is one more tip; write your content after you have selected your template. This will give you a better idea of how much space you have to work with and what other kinds of content you need to create.
Ask your Readers to Invite Others to Subscribe
When appropriate, allow your subscribers to do some of the work for you!
Many ESPs will allow you to add a subscribe button at the top of your email. Anytime one of your readers forwards your email newsletter, the new reader has the option to subscribe.
You can also make your email shareable by including branded buttons for social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. When the reader clicks on the button, they will be prompted to log in to their social media so they can share your email. The post will automatically include your subject line as well as a permanent URL that viewers can click on. Click here for more information on how to add social media buttons.