You can read information about it online. It was put in place to protect consumers.
If you own a Hair Salon and you send your customers information about cooking, you’ll loose credibility—sending them tips for keeping their hair healthy is what are expecting.
Style: No matter what you decide, stick to it! If you decide on a theme newsletter, make sure that you stick with the theme and resist the urge to include a smattering of unrelated stories. Either type of e-newsletter is fine, just be consistent.
Time Zones: If your clients are on the east coast, make sure you adjust your clock appropriately.
SPAM: A large number of ISPs are starting to block all email from being delivered that are not approved in advance by recipients. It’s important to ask your customers to add you to their address book.
Excessive punctuation in your subject line will trigger mail filters and spam blockers. Try to keep the subject line between 20 & 50 characters. A long subject line may get cut off in some email clients and have a higher likely hood of being blocked by content-based spam filters.
All caps, change it to mixed capsInclude a bit of or specific information about what’s in the message or at least what month these tips are for.Don’t include $$, or exclamation points unless you want it to be picked up by content spam blockers.
The first few seconds are the most important – make them count. Know your customers—what do they want to hear about or read about?Remember a good e-newsletter should entice your clients to read more. Give them a teaser and a few sentences that will grab their attention and makes them want to know more. Include a short introduction to the subject and then drive them to your website, where they can read more and find out more about what you’re offering.An e-newsletter with typos and grammatical errors is just bad form. Make sure your customers can reach you by email or phone. (and make sure someone is checking the emails and responding to customers)
You’re an expert at your business—share the secrets to your success or why a product will make them successful.What tips can you offer? What are the benefits of your business/products.Ask a few customers to share their advice with your customers or interview them and share their story.Customers are always asking questions—go ahead and answer them in the e-newsletter. Chances are if one person wants to know, so does everyone else!People want to hear about businesses and what they are doing to help our community.
Call to action: Make your readers take action.
SPAM: These are some of the words that most spam filters tend to dislike—and there are many more.Just using one of these words or phrases will probably not cause you to be blocked, but it’s best to avoid them when possible.
Creating Great E-Newsletters Susan McKay Word Mixology
Start with a Plan A little planning can go a long way. What type of content will the e-newsletter contain? How frequently will it be sent out? What’s my budget for this? Where will the content come from?
You should be aware of Legislation passed called the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003www.ftc.gov/bcp/online/pubs/buspubs/canspam.htm
IncludeContent Relevant to what was Requested. Only send information to your customers that they will be expecting.
Be consistent with Frequency and Style Decide on a schedule and stick to it. Some e-newsletters have monthly themes while others are like a newspaper and include a variety of articles. People like consistency and will begin to expect it. Consider including regular sections like a newspaper and people will begin to rely on reading their favorite section.
Timing Counts Timing is everything. Research has shown that the best time to send emails to businesses is Tuesday –Thursday, between 9:30am and 3:00pm. If you are emailing consumers, it’s best to send the email Friday-Sunday between 5:00pm and 8:00pm. Be mindful of your time zones.
Deliverability=No Spam ISPs are doing everything they can to block spam. Ask your recipients to add your sending email address to their address books. “To insure delivery of this newsletter, please addsusan@wordmixologyto your email address book.”
Whose it From? These days, people tend to glance at the “From” field to see if they recognize the sender’s name or email address, then they look at the subject line to see if it’s of interest. Use a “From” name that is your company’s name or a recognized name within your company. Whatever you decide be consistent!
Make the Subject Line Count Avoid putting capital letters and punctuation such as quotes, exclamation points and dollar signs in your subject line. Don’t make it too long. Include information on what the message is about.
Some Examples: WORDMIXOLOGY’S CHRONICLE FOR OCTOBER Word Mixology’s Chronicle for October Garden Tips Garden Tips Monthly-Are Year Round Orchids Possible? Newsletter Special- Save $20 Today Only Buy Now!!!! Newsletter Special 15% off.
What Makes a Good Message? Readers should be able to scan headlines and article introductions. Information that is interesting and timely. Don’t Spill the Beans! Shorter paragraphs leave your e-newsletter less cluttered and easier to read. Good Housekeeping Matters. Use spell checker Correct Grammar Include your contact information.
What Makes Good Content? Share your secrets. Share your knowledge. Share your customers’ knowledge. Answer frequently asked questions. Share information about community service projects your company is participating in.
Call to Action Include a call to action: Use a coupon Call for an appointment Register for a class Answer a question
Add Value Adding value to your e-newsletter helps build your brand and your trust with your customers. Add value to your message by including a coupon or discount code for a product or service.
Beware of Content-Based SPAM Filters ISPs use content filters to block spam messages based on content alone. These content-based filters take a close look at words in the subject line and body of the email message. Avoid words that trigger these Content-Based Filters.
Some Words to Avoid: Free 50% off Compare Loans Don’t Delete Why pay more? Stop Satisfaction Guaranteed Call Now Discount Removes Cash Bonus Order Now Time Limited Special Promotion No Cost Serious Cash Save Up To All New Subscribe Now Double Your Income Opportunity Collect Please Read While Supplies Last All Natural
Email Service Providers (ESPs) www.icontact.com www.constantcontact.com www.mailchimp.com www.verticalresponse.com