Article

Why email marketing important for your brand5 min read

Elena Maltseva January 9, 2018

Newsletters are one of marketing’s oldest tools, yet are still used heavily in campaigns today – like email marketing.

With the speed of digital transformation and the emergence of inbound marketing, it’s impressive that this 1970s strategy is still popular with marketing specialists.

Here are six reasons why email marketing newsletters are still important:

  1. Efficiency. Newsletters are quick and cheap, compared to advertising campaigns.
  2. Reach. One newsletter can reach a large number of customers.
  3. Real-time. Newsletters land instantly – so you can get results quickly.
  4. Tracking.  Campaign management tools let you track each newsletter as it’s opened.
  5. Personal. Each newsletter can be personalised for an individual reader.
  6. Preferred. Email is still the preferred communication channel between customers and product/service suppliers.

But how have newsletters changed over the decades?

Today, newsletters are used as digital campaign tools – to convert leads.

So, increasing a company’s range of newsletters helps them to reach a larger audience and convert more leads. And given the value of lead conversion, it’s important to understand how the email experience has influenced today’s consumer expectations of newsletters.

How has modern email impacted newsletters?

Dramatic changes in consumer expectations towards marketing email and therefore email marketing newsletter design are highlighted in the latest NN Group report.

  • Newsletter subscriptions are easier to manage.

    Modern email clients let you manage newsletter subscriptions easily and block spam with a filter. Faster internet also loads our newsletters quickly, and common standards for subscription management have resulted in simplified signup processes. However, there are still some newsletter details that users prefer to set before signing up – such as their subscription timings and newsletter topics.

  • People receive a lot more mail.

    You probably have fresh emails in your inbox every morning, some of which you delete without even opening. Subject lines that are vague or sound untrustworthy are first to go into the trash. People tend to skim for anything of value – so long words, confusing abbreviations and ‘clever’ wordplays aren’t a good idea. You get 50 characters for a subject line and NN recommend you use the first 40 for the most important and relevant information – so get to the point!

  • Spam isn’t just unsolicited messages anymore.

    ‘Spam’ is any email which is unsolicited and irrelevant. People used to worry about spam, so were careful with their subscription choices – fearing their email address would end up in spammers’ lists. Spam-management tools have allowed us to become more relaxed and confident. However, the definition of ‘spam’ has started to evolve.

    ‘Participants in our study used the word “spam” to describe solicited marketing emails that they considered random, impersonal, irrelevant, with too much promotional hype, or coming in high volume’, according to the NN Group report.

    Today’s users essentially dislike any emails that aren’t specific to their needs – and call them all ‘spam’. Relevance, good timing and personalisation are the next step of the marketing email UX. However, be careful about inserting the recipient’s’ name into the subject line, as people are wary of this tactic and know it’s not written by hand – according to the NN Group. It’s better to use the subject line’s precious space for something useful and meaningful.

  • Visual layouts lead the way.

    Most people use their smartphone to read emails today, which has a huge impact on design principles. Modern newsletters have to look perfect on small screens – or face a high risk of losing the attention of their readers.

4 tips to improve your email marketing newsletters

Here are four ways to improve your marketing email experience.

  • Make subscribing quick, obvious and easy.

    Great customer experience starts at the beginning. Make sure your submission process is quick. Your signup form should be extremely easy to find on your website and as short as possible. You can even break it into steps if you require more than two or three fields.

  • Rethink your subject line.

    Capture the attention of your reader with the first 40 characters of your subject line. Choose your words wisely and don’t waste space. Your subject line should be short; summarising the message content – and preferably without any symbols or special characters.

  • Create relevant and personalised content.

    Investigate your customers’ interests using the data you already have. Your information doesn’t have to be highly targeted, it can be specific to the time of the year or a particular event coming up. You’ll increase engagement and start to build loyalty. But be authentic – so don’t use their name in the subject line.

  • Look perfect on mobile.

    Mobile comes first. Make your newsletter look perfect on a small screen. Single column design using full-screen, high-quality images and minimal text is a popular visual communication trend. Use a “Read More” button to save your message from text overkill. Anyone interested in the topic will follow the URL and read the full article. However, keep in mind that despite the overall internet speed having increased in recent years, there are still some mobile data bandwidth limits – so keep the overall file size down!

Email Marketing Newsletters wrapped-up

Email marketing newsletters are a valuable, powerful tool for lead conversions – if used correctly.

Be thoughtful, create a great experience for your audience, and remember that the newsletter is a touchpoint and represents your brand.

Make newsletters work for your brand – not against it.

Resources:
https://www.campaignmonitor.com/resources/guides/why-email/
https://fulcrumtech.net/resources/email-marketing-benefits/
https://www.nngroup.com/articles/newsletters/