Whether you’re a swim school that has a well-oiled and high-yielding marketing engine in place, or a health and wellness company that’s still hammering out your best marketing approach, an email marketing and email newsletter strategy can be a great idea for lead generation. Not only does this tactic require little in terms of effort, time, and budget, but it can also help you connect more regularly with customers and keep you on their radars.

Here are some newsletter design and copy tips, so yours can be one of the best business newsletters out there.

Have Your Email Marketing Goal in Mind

This is a crucial step that is often missed by well-meaning marketers. They see a competitor’s newsletter, and immediately think, “we need to do that” without examining why. Or they’re looking to choose low-cost tactics, so decide an email newsletter is the way to go, but fail to map out what they want to gain from it. Your email marketing strategy should stem from your goals, so don’t skip this step.

Start by discussing what your goal is with your team. Is it to maintain awareness and stay top of mind with customers every week? Is it to get higher attendance at your events, or boost sales of new products or services? Is it to show appreciation to your internal team and increase employee morale? Depending on your answer, your newsletter is going to take a very specific shape and frequency.

Also, when you figure out your goal, remember to nail down who your primary audience is, as well (BONUS: Use one of your buyer personas as the audience).

Nail Down the Email Newsletter Copy

Once you know who you’re going to be speaking to, and why, in your newsletter, writing the copy becomes much easier. A general rule of thumb is to keep your email newsletter on the shorter side, with around three to four sections. Any less than this, and it will seem to lack meaningful content. Any more, and you’re going to lose your readers. Figure out what your sections are, and how many of them you have, first.

Next, come up with interesting headlines for each section and a short introduction. Your headlines should resemble news or article headlines that make people want to click them.

For example; “5 warning signs your employee trainings have backfired” or “Debunking common myths about self-help”.

If you have a lot of information to include, consider breaking up the paragraph section into a bulleted or numbered list. The copy should be straightforward and concise, and definitely include your business’ personality (you want to sound human in the newsletter!).

Design with Readability in Mind

Next, it’s time to design. It’s always best to start with your copy first so you can plan out your sections and what imagery you want to use with them. Remember to keep your imagery professional and relevant, and use original images whenever possible. They always perform better than stock photos (although stock photos work just fine if they’re all you can get). Then you can look for a good email newsletter template that will accommodate it all.

Depending on what systems you use internally, your design phase may vary. But most CRM and marketing automation platforms (MailChimp, Infusionsoft/Keap, HubSpot, SharpSpring, etc.) offer intuitive, pre-designed newsletter templates that are easy to plug your information and images into. This saves you time, and should yield you a very professional, eye-catching end result.

Remember Calls-to-Action (CTAs)

Finally, think about how to close each section. You want your newsletter to be a communication tool and not come across as shameless advertising, but it’s still important to maximize its effectiveness. With this in mind, include calls-to-action (CTAs) that make sense with each of your sections and don’t sound too salesy.

For instance, if you’re giving a shout out to your Dance Instructor of the Month in one section, include a hyperlink to your “About Our Team” website page, along with verbiage like “Get to know the rest of our high-caliber team.” This is a great way to invite your audience to learn more about your company, without reading like an ad.

As you go about planning, writing and designing your email newsletter, keep your audience’s motivations and emotions in mind. This will help you deliver content that resonates and ultimately helps you achieve your goals. Contact us any time to learn more, or if you’d like help establishing an email marketing strategy or writing and designing your next company newsletter!