Newsletter Best Practices

People debate about the effectiveness of email Newsletters. My recommendation is…

Why not? People opt in to your email list, so it isn’t like you are spamming people. People have asked that you send them one. You should however, use an email service that utilizes an opt out feature.

Letting your customers know how often they will come, or better yet giving them a choice is a good way to retain customers and visitors. If you have a blog then setting up a newsletter using the RSS feed from your website is by far easiest and most efficient method. You can always send out special announcements.

Here are some best practices to ensure your success:

Best Time

Well, there really isn’t a “best time”, but I can tell you that Monday mornings is NOT a good time. You could do some quick analysis from your Google Analytics demographics to get a feel for your audience. Your webmaster will have to update your website with some special coding, so make sure you ask for this upgrade if you would like to see it.

Inform your Customers

Be sure to let your customers know what they will get for signing up to receive your newsletter. Will they get promotions, deals and product updates? Emphasizing the benefits they will receive from your newsletter will give you better success in the end.

Highlight the most important piece of news or product update in the subject line. This will entice them to open it once it has been received.

Unsubscribe Etiquette

54% of email subscribers say they unsubscribe when they feel the emails come too frequently. You need to let your customers know what to expect so you won’t be bombarding them with unwanted emails. You can consider offering different frequencies or different newsletters to allow your audience to tailor their experience.

When a customer does unsubscribe you can set-up your campaign to gently ask the reason for doing so. Some good explanations for a questionnaire would be:

  • Frequency
  • Irrelevance
  • Repetition
  • Product dissatisfaction

Email Distribution Ethics

Always make sure you have the customers permission before adding them to an email list. Don’t, for example, add colleagues to an email list after they gave you a business card.

Not only is it unethical to use the email addresses, it can give you a bad reputation and about 91% of these users will unsubscribe anyway, so there is no good side to this practice.

There are several newsletters I receive on a regular basis that I actually look forward to. Study those newsletters and see if you can generate the same feeling for your audience.

Suzi Wilson

2 replies
  1. David Wilson
    David Wilson says:

    Gulf Coast Web Net’s greatest asset is Suzi Wilson’s 30 years of experience, creative ideas and her willingness to go the extra mile for each client. My business has seen a solid growth due in large part to the scope and effectiveness of her web site design. Her hosting company ensures my web site is functioning each month at its peak performance. I actively recommend her company to everyone I meet.

    Reply

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