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Are you skeptical about the power of email newsletters? You shouldn't be. Numerous studies find that email is still an effective and profitable way of communicating with customers and bringing in business. For small businesses, developing an email newsletter is a fantastic way to keep the relationship going with customers, and be seen as an ongoing resource.
Here are some tips to create a newsletter that your subscribers will look forward to seeing in their inboxes:
People love to be seen as a resource for their friends and colleagues. If you can provide tips and information that will help them do that then they will pass it along to their own networks. Try out some of these ideas:
- Fun facts and useful tips: What topics are of interest to you that you think might be of interest to your customers? Something as simple as fun facts related to your industry offer an easy way to spice things up and entice readers. For example, a florist might include a “Flower Fun Fact: Moon flowers bloom only at night, closing during the day.”
- Industry news and trends: It’s a big world out there. What’s happening and how does it impact your business? Your customers will appreciate your take on what’s current, it shows that you’re “in touch” with what’s going on in the world outside your four walls. Are there things going on in your industry that affect your business and what you have to offer? If there’s anything of particular interest let your customers know and include your point of view.
- Community happenings: Being involved with the community is huge for small businesses. Keep an eye out for what events might be happening in the community and get involved. Showing support for events and other activities in your local community is a great way to build relationships with your customers and prospects and can provide some valuable content for your newsletter.
Make a connection
Include content that will get people to form a more personal connection with your business or organization. This type of content lends itself more naturally to certain businesses but if you get creative this connection can be formed with businesses of all types. Try doing a profile of one of your employees, or showcase a “behind the scenes” look into your business.
It’s often as simple as this: Sometimes, people need to be told what to do. When you say “Please share this,” your fans often will. For example, you can include a piece of content (such as an article, or social post) and tell your fans “Share this if you agree.”
RELATED: Combine Social Media and Email Marketing For Better Results
Make it fun
Everyone loves to laugh. So if you can find a funny picture, video, story, or all of the above that will make your customers smile—why not? It’s a great way to connect with your customers and to make a positive impression on your prospects. Just be sure to remain true to your brand.
Think of your email newsletter as a sort of newspaper or magazine. You wouldn’t want your newspaper delivery to come late on Sunday morning, would you? Same goes for your newsletter. Be consistent with the recurrence and timing for when you send. Your subscribers will become used to the schedule and come to expect it—really engaged subscribers might even proactively look for the email when they know it typically arrives.
Get it opened
This is my final tip for a reason: writing the perfect subject line should be the final step in crafting your newsletter. Don’t write your newsletter based on your subject line, instead write your subject line based on your newsletter. Just like a bestselling novel needs an enticing title, your email newsletter needs a subject line that pulls readers in and gets them to open.
RELATED: How to Get More Newsletter Subscribers
Editor's note: Not using email marketing yet? Or not happy with your provider? BusinessknowHow.com uses and recommends Constant Contact. Try it free today.
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Ellen Williams, Constant Contact Regional Development Director, New York and Southern Connecticut
Ellen has over 20 years of technology and marketing experience and has presented to over 4,000 small businesses, nonprofits, and associations. Her advice on best practices help organizations understand how to build great customer relationships that inevitable grow their businesses.