How Effective are Newsletters for Marketing?

You might assume that with the growth of social media marketing, email newsletters have fallen by the wayside. But this is not the case.
Marketing Newsletters

You might assume that with the growth of social media marketing, email newsletters have fallen by the wayside. But this is not the case. Newsletters continue to be one of the most effective marketing strategies available to a business, allowing you to directly communicate with your audience in a personalised way. 

The call to action with an email newsletter will often change of course. You may be promoting specific products or offers, or perhaps hope to nurture a sense of community by offering advice and tips. Regardless of your end goal, newsletters are a fantastic way to engage with your customers. 

Are Newsletters Effective?

The simple answer is yes. And when compared to social media, the conversion rates are more than three times higher. According to Optinmonster, the conversion rate for social media campaigns is 1.9%, while email marketing has a 6.05% conversion rate. The average open rate for emails is around 22% too, while the engagement rate for social media posts is a mere 0.58%.

Obviously, these figures are averages, so you can’t assume you’ll see the same conversion rates. This will generally be determined by how large your readership is, the reason your audience signed up in the first place, and the content of your newsletters.

How Do You Get Newsletter Signups?

There are a few great ways to get people to sign up to your newsletters, and some that work, but aren’t considered to be best practice. In regards to the latter, lots of sites these days have a pop up asking you to sign up to the company’s newsletter. While this tactic sees results, it also irritates a large percentage of your audience. 

Some of the simplest ways to encourage newsletter subscribers include the following:

  • Offer great content in return for signing up
  • Include an obvious call to action on your site, inviting visitors to sign up to your newsletter 
  • Encourage your social media followers to subscribe by including a link in your posts 
  • Ask customers to sign up for newsletters once they’ve already used your service
  • Don’t ask for more details than necessary in your sign-up form

For a more comprehensive guide on getting more newsletter subscribers, you can check out our blog expanding these techniques.

What Should Your Newsletters Include?

A common mistake with a lot of marketing emails is neglecting to send out ‘news’ in a newsletter, but instead offering adverts pushing sales. Readers may not be actively looking to make a purchase, and probably didn’t sign up to your newsletter to receive what is essentially spam. So while you should mention any offers or products you wish to promote, try not to be too pushy, and vary the content between newsletters.

Another thing to keep in mind when writing email newsletters is to keep your emails simple, and don’t focus on too many topics at a time. Just like website content, you need a clear call to action with your newsletters, so your readers aren’t pointed in too many directions at once. 

You should also consider the design of your newsletters. They not only have to be on brand, they also have to appeal to your audience. So make sure you use imagery, while ensuring the layout isn’t too cramped. And if the email is too wordy, readers tend to dismiss the email, so avoid big blocks of text. People like content that is easily digestible and quickly gets the message across.

When is the Best Time to Send Newsletters?

While there’s a lot of different variables involved in getting the timing right for a newsletter, there are a few general rules to follow. We’ve listed a few top tips below:

  • Try to avoid sending newsletters on Mondays or weekends. The former is because people are feeling a bit low after returning to work, and are likely to just delete the accumulated emails in their inbox. With weekends, people are usually too busy to worry about email newsletters.
  • According to Mailchip, the best days to send email newsletters are Tuesdays and Thursdays, though Wednesday isn’t a bad option!
  • Around midday is the general rule when it comes to sending newsletters – 2pm has been found to be the optimal time for many businesses

Bear in mind that these tips won’t always work for your business – how effective they are will depend on things like your target demographic and what you’re selling. You’ll probably need to experiment a bit with your timings, and analyse your success rate. 

Just make sure that when you are testing when to send newsletters, you use the same content for different people, otherwise you may get skewed results. For instance, the open rate for emails offering a huge discount will definitely get a better open rate than one discussing your privacy policy, no matter when you send them. 

It’s also good to remember that most marketers follow these guidelines, so people are often flooded with newsletters at the same time. Perhaps try a slightly more unusual time. Companies like WordStream have found that sending emails earlier in the day, before people get to work, sees the best open rates.