6-Point Checklist for Perfecting Your E-Newsletters

E-Newsletters are an important communications tool for small and mid-sized businesses to stay connected with customers and prospects.
Your e-newsletters must deliver results; generating interest in a new product, boosting awareness about a promotion, driving traffic to your website…
6 Things You Must Do to Make Sure Your E-Newsletters Drive Results

1. Include an Attention-Grabbing Subject Line

Your subject line needs to engage subscribers from the second they see it, which means it should be short, descriptive, and compelling:

  • Length: In most cases, email subject lines shouldn’t exceed 50 characters. Most readers will quickly scan their inbox before deciding what to open. If your subject line is too long, subscribers will be more likely to brush past it.
  • Customization: Personalize subject lines by making use of attributes like names or cities to boost open rates.
  • Promotions: Highlighting an upcoming or ongoing promotion in your subject line can help you connect with subscribers (or reconnect with those that have become inactive).

Make sure you play around with your subject lines, experimenting with different degrees of personalization and doing A/B tests to find out what approaches work best for your target audience.

2. Give Subscribers Valuable Information

mobile-1605845_960_720The general rule of thumb is that the more you talk about yourself, the less interested potential customers will be. People want to get emails that help them, whether that means information about industry or emerging trends, learning about new products, or relevant, educational material.

3. Have a Clear Call to Action (CTA)

An e-newsletter should entertain and educate; it’s not necessarily for making the hard sell. But that doesn’t mean readers shouldn’t be asked to take a next step. Including calls to action in your email encouraging readers to further engage with you. For example, ask them to:

  • Register for an event.
  • Subscribe to your newsletter.
  • Sign-up for a demo.

Best practices for CTAs in newsletters:

  • Start your CTA with a verb. You want your subscribers to take an action, so tell them what to do.
  • If using a button, make sure it’s big enough that mobile users can click on it easily.
  • Be specific. You don’t want subscribers guessing what step you want them to take next.

4. Adhere to All Regulatory Requirements

In Canada, this means being compliant with “Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation” (CASL) by:

  • Making your contact information (including a physical address) clear. This will also make it easy for email recipients to get in touch with you.
  • Get explicit consent from anyone you send emails to. For example, you cannot pre-check an opt-in box on a form.
  • Provide subscribers with the opportunity to opt out. It must be easy for them to Unsubscribe.
  • Ensure your subject lines, headers, and content are consistent and accurate. It’s important to identify the sender, make sure titles reflect the content actually in the email, and the information is valid and honest.

Click here to visit the CASL website for full details.

5. Test Your Message

After putting your e-newsletter together, make sure you test it to confirm it renders well:

  • What size is the font? It needs to be large enough to be read on any device. Typically size 14 or 16 will be good, but it depends on the type of font being used.
  • Have you compressed the images? They should be under 50MB for easy delivery.
  • Did you check all the links? Whatever you’ve linked to – an article on your site or a contact form – you need to make sure everything is working to guarantee a seamless user experience.

6. Ensure Your E-Newsletter is Mobile Friendly

e-newsletter tipsOver half of all emails received today are opened on mobile devices. You need to anticipate that trend and ensure your e-newsletter is mobile friendly:

  • Make sure it’s responsive, meaning it will render properly across different email services.
  • Keep it simple. The goal is to say everything you need in as few words as possible. A lot of recipients will simply scan, so you need to make sure you capture their attention.
  • Have a minimum clickable area of 44px by 44px, which will let mobile users easily access resources and links.

In developing your e-newsletter, make sure it’s tailored to reflect the needs and preferences of your audience. Developing fresh, valuable, and compelling newsletters will keep your top of mind with prospects and customers, expanding your visibility and credibility with your target audience.


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