Friday, June 28, 2013

E-newsletters – How to Increase Your Open Rate

by Kim Tarasiewicz

Does your company send an e-newsletter? It’s a great way to touch a large audience and keep your brand in front of them in a positive, valuable way. The trick is how to get your audience to open your newsletter with so much “In-Box” clutter.

Your readers are more likely to respond, repost or take action on an event in the newsletter if they feel it is meant for them personally. Providing the recipient with a useful tip, guide or item of interest makes them more likely to share your newsletter with friends and expand your company brand. Industry tips can be useful and relevant, especially when they include a “Secrets of…,” “How to…,” or “Trends in…,”section. Trivia, interesting images and humor will keep your reader engaged while providing them a break from strictly business communications.

Keep a spreadsheet of topic ideas during the month and ask employees for input. Has one of your employees won an award or completed a community service project? –Share the link and alert that organization, which will boost their presence and show another side of your business. And be sure to keep the articles timely.

10 Best Practices When Creating E-Newsletters:
  • Make the design consistent with your website and collateral materials. This maintains your branding and awareness.
  • Add an opt-in subscription tool on the website and social media sites.
  • Host all newsletter content on your website and only provide teaser copy with links in the e-newsletters.
  • Be sure to review open rates, evaluate trends and readers’ habits over time, and adjust your newsletter content to meet the needs of the readers.
  • Send at regular intervals.
  • Send at optimal times.
  • Use a “from” address that is identifiable with your company.
  • Include engagement tools: surveys, polls, forums, ways to provide feedback, links to social media.
  • Test everything before sending your newsletter. Once it’s gone, you cannot get it back. 
  • Be sure to include an opt-out link. Familiarize yourself with the CAN-SPAM Act.
And remember, if you keep it interesting, your clients will look forward to opening your newsletter first when they check their emails.

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