Email newsletters could really add a lot to your current content marketing strategy. The best newsletters not only help spread a brand’s message but are actually the kind of emails people enjoy opening. Unfortunately, the bad email newsletters the ones that get instantly deleted and unsubscribed from are far more common. The line between interesting and annoying is a fine one, indeed, in email marketing. Lucky for you, we have a few pointers to help your company’s newsletter bring smiles to your customers’ in-boxes.
SFGate recently looked into what makes time-killing social media site Quora’s newsletter so darn readable and entertaining. Quora’s Adam D’Angelo says it’s all about personalized content.
“Well, it is algorithmically created,” he notes. “I wanted to make something that people would read. What I didn’t want was something that was an annoying little email. It took a while, but it has paid off. We had two people who worked on it (in a dedicated fashion) for a month, though we had been working on-and-off on it for nearly a year-and-a-half. The email essentially looks at what people are reading and engaging (with) the most on Quora.”
In short, D’Angelo and his Quora team worked hard on creating a newsletter that talks about the things their users are interested in — and that’s something any company can do, even without fancy algorithm tools. Simple questionnaires on email subscription lists can help you decipher what topics and products your email newsletter readers are interested in. Short and specific newsletters can be created by simply altering your general customer newsletter. Another thing Quora does brilliantly with its newsletter is publish weekly. Not daily, which is too much, or monthly, which tends to lead to customer amnesia. A weekly, friendly “hello!” from you to your customers says, “I’m keeping in touch” instead of “I’m stalking you” or, even worse, “I’ve forgotten about you.”
Finally, a fool-proof way to get folks to open your newsletters is with a great subject line. Quora asks clever questions in its subject lines, while Williams-Sonoma uses tempting cuisine descriptions and others still use today’s headlines to get us to open. However you get there, the point is you only get one chance to create an intriguing subject line. The Internet is filled with definitive advice blog posts on how to create the world’s most fabulous subject lines. While we’re sure each of these has its merits, we’ve found that simply writing subject lines that you’d want to read yourself is a brilliant place to start.