Newsletters are an essential component of print and email marketing. Businesses use this medium for advertising their goods or services, communicating new ideas, or discussing upcoming events with prospects and customers.
A suitably formatted newsletter connects stakeholders and stockholders to employees and customers.
The time it takes to create and distribute a high-quality newsletter can be overwhelming to entrepreneurs, founders, and small business owners. In a perfect world, everyone would write their own content for distribution.
We don’t live in a perfect world.
Digital agencies like yours can help with this marketing investment, but only if the essential knowledge is available to create this resource. For many, that journey starts with an effective WordPress newsletter plugin.
If you’re in the lead generation business, the following ideas can help you get more readers for your clients’ newsletters.
Best Ways to Improve the Read Rate of Client Newsletters
Newsletters are a straightforward communication tool. They’re used to share information and generate attention. They strengthen relationships while building brand awareness when structured and sent correctly.
A newsletter can even be an important educational tool that discusses policies and procedures.
If you’re ready to start improving the read rate of your clients’ newsletters, here are the steps your digital agency can take today.
1. Design the Content for the Reader
Businesses come to digital agencies because they feel their writing and composition skills aren’t making the grade. The first rule is simple when you’re in charge of putting together a newsletter.
Don’t waste the reader’s time.
The content should be designed for the person who subscribed to the newsletter. People want to know how their lives will be changed.
They don’t want to hear about a business’s problems or read about how their efforts can solve a company’s problems.
People ask one question repeatedly: what’s in it for me? That’s basic human psychology.
When designing content for the reader from an agency viewpoint, these elements should be the focus of the writing.
- Why Do People Subscribe to the Newsletter? You have an email list to use because your client offered something valuable. That perspective must get reinforced with each message to ensure the relationship between the customer and the company is strong.
- Appropriate Timing is Crucial. If you send an email during the busiest part of the day, it will probably be deleted. When the newsletter goes out in the middle of the night, it could get ignored. Think about when your client’s customers are active, and then schedule the distribution for that time.
- How Hard Is It to Read the Message? People have an attention span of approximately eight seconds. If your intro doesn’t hook the customer, your client won’t maximize their investment in this process. Each email should be short, to the point, and filled with useful and easily implementable information.
Would you want to receive the email that your digital agency is sending? If not, that fact alone says it’s time to implement the fixes outlined above.
2. Focus on Value Instead of Sales
People don’t sign up for newsletters to receive constant pitches. They want information that is helpful in their daily lives.
When someone trades their email address for newsletter access, discounts, and other benefits, they expect something valuable in return. They don’t want to see a constant stream of pitch notes suggesting that they’ll miss out if they don’t act now.
Think through the product or service your client offers.
- Does it help to boost productivity or create more efficiencies?
- How long would it take for someone to learn how to use their investment?
- Is it possible to respond to consumer questions within a set time?
You want the email to feel like a conversation. There should be some give and take in the content that shows you get the reader’s pain points while providing something relevant to use.
The goal should be to resolve issues for the reader while leading them toward a path where your client provides the ultimate solution that makes life easier.
Focusing on value instead of sales makes it much easier to see the journey.
3. Maintain a Professional Approach
Digital agencies don’t intend to create an unprofessional image, but this problem is extensive throughout the industry. Many pros don’t realize how others consume the content in newsletters, and that outcome affects the way people see brands and businesses.
Unprofessional etiquette in an email newsletter can look like any or all of the following issues.
- Not Being Direct. A newsletter is meant to be directive. Getting to the point starts with the subject line, which should be accurate and concise. Every bit of information a reader consumes should reflect what the message is about, even when more than 250 words are shared. If necessary, include an executive summary, use bullets, or organize thoughts into sections.
- Remove the Emotion. Digital agencies act as intermediaries between customers and businesses that don’t always get along. Newsletters should be fact-based emails that people can open with confidence. If you feel angry when writing something, sit on it for a few hours before giving it another edit.
- Don’t Be Too Available. When you’re always going, it’s much easier for a mistake to happen. If you need some time to organize your thoughts, tell that to your client. They’ll want the best content sent on their behalf, and spending some extra time to make sure things are right is an investment worth making.
- Check Spelling and Grammar. It might not be possible to find every typo, but there are plenty of tools available that can help you avoid the most obvious mistakes. One of the best ways to edit a newsletter is to read the text aloud. You’ll hear problems with rhythm better while catching more errors.
Professionalism should be the foundation of each communication effort a digital agency creates. Focusing on these elements from the beginning can help get your clients’ newsletters open and read more often.
4. Segment the Mailing Lists
Would your agency walk up to a random stranger to discuss all the benefits your clients offer? Although a cold-call approach might work, the social confrontation is more likely to drive people away than bring them closer to the desired goal.
It makes more sense to approach the prospects that are more likely to have a positive response to a newsletter.
Even though the interactions are digital, people still see inbox notifications as social interactions. If something isn’t valuable or desired, it’ll get ignored – that’s the best-case scenario.
The worst-case scenario is that your client receives negative feedback because of the unwanted material.
Start with the basics first. Use the demographic information that separates your client’s customers from each other. Age, gender, and geographic location are the most popular choices in this category.
Once you have those segments structured, here are some other ways your agency can personalize this email marketing approach.
- Organizational Scope. If your digital agency serves a small business owner, sending information that falls within the product or service structures they offer makes sense. Why discuss enterprise-level capabilities if that option isn’t available?
- Sales Funnel Progress. A newsletter reader at the end of your client’s sales funnel has different needs than someone who just started that journey. People who are ready to buy want that feeling justified and confirmed. The latter prospect might want introductory content that helps them familiarize themselves with the brand.
- Behavioral Changes. When people change their reading or buying habits, it means something happened to change the relationship dynamic between them and your client. Your digital agency can use the newsletter format to determine the issue and provide a possible fix.
5. Keep the Focus on a Single Topic
Conversations tend to ramble. Meetings end up going in unexpected directions. These elements are part of the human experience, but they still need to be avoided in newsletters that your digital agency sends.
When writing and content wander off the main point, the information becomes hard to understand or frustrating to read.
Every idea needs to relate to a single topic. Here are some of the best ways you can maintain that focus.
- Identify the Main Point. Does the subject thesis convey the information and hook that your client needs to entice readers to review their newsletter? Most people don’t read everything in an email, so try to convey the message’s purpose within a single introductory sentence.
- Offer Supporting Details. The best newsletters provide details that relate to the identified main point. If the order feels off or seems confusing, try reordering the format to see if the material is easier to read.
- Explore Each Paragraph. If a newsletter is 250 words long, it should have four or five paragraphs. The introduction outlines the value, while the conclusion reinforces it while offering a call to action. What data will the other three paragraphs offer? Without direct connections that explore the key points of the discussed subject, readers have a higher risk of losing their focus.
- Maintain Voice Consistency. If your writing voice jumps between casual and formal, a reader might feel confused or frustrated by the changes in tone. This issue also applies when the narrative goes from first, second, or third person to another structure. Even multiple switches from active to passive voice can make email marketing efforts feel unreadable.
In this section, your digital agency’s goal should be to adopt a logical pattern for each email. You want everything to feel organized according to importance, classification, or comparison.
6. Offer Unique and Helpful Tips
Unique content starts when you know your client’s goals, vision, and values. The newsletter must address this question: what do they hope to achieve?
Anything you send via email marketing software for agencies, even standalone pieces, must align with those essentials.
If you don’t care about the purpose of what you’re discussing in the newsletter for a client, neither will the reader.
When someone reads a newsletter, they ask “what if” or “so what” questions. Each idea should be expressed as a clear statement, framed in a way that makes sense to the casual reader. Each tip should provide appropriate examples and supporting data to ensure it feels relevant.
Here are some additional ideas that can help you improve the uniqueness and value of the tips offered to readers.
- Brainstorm on the First Draft. Many agencies try to maximize their profits by producing a single draft of each content item. Newsletters improve when the first effort is used for brainstorming and structure than a polished piece. Allow it to look and feel unstructured so that you are free to explore any idea.
- Write to a Single Person. Imagine that you’re writing to a single reader. The content should target that individual’s needs to ensure the information speaks to them on a personal level. This step can be as simple as writing while using “you” instead of “they.”
- Be Willing to Walk Away. Take some time between the first and second drafts of the newsletter. It’ll give you more time to think of new ideas, consult with clients, or revise concepts.
Great content begins with a viable headline. That means your newsletters need a catchy subject line to generate inbox interest. Try to summarize the information while avoiding common spam words that filters catch.
Take These Steps to Create Fantastic Newsletters for Your Clients
Newsletters provide numerous benefits when they communicate on a personal level with readers. Your clients trust your team’s expertise to connect these prospects to their brands so that a viable sales funnel forms from this content.
When newsletters don’t offer something valuable or informative, they’re much easier to ignore. If email etiquette isn’t followed as well, it can be challenging to encourage people to start reading.
These implementable tips can correct that situation quickly and effectively. Some agencies might look at all the ideas to reformat their approaches, while others might find that one missing detail to take their services to the next level.
You need to guarantee more readers. Implementing the ideas offered here can help you achieve that goal.