It's one of the oldest digital channels and still one of the best for marketing across all stages of the customer journey. Yet email newsletters have become associated with spam, batch-and-blast, and undifferentiated marketing.
But now we're seeing a renaissance in this channel, and the emergence of in-email advertising is further helping enhance its value and relevance. Andreas Jürgensen, CEO at Passendo, offers up seven tips on how to deliver success with your email newsletters.
Use your data to its full potential
Brands invest considerable sums in getting themselves noticed and acquiring valuable, opted-in first-party user data. Make the most of this investment by ensuring your email newsletters are a key vehicle for activating this critical asset. After all, this communications channel's more intimate than many others and much more versatile. Newsletters can educate, entertain, inspire, grow awareness, build loyalty, and sell products and services. Remember, people share their data with you because they're interested in your brand and want to hear from you. So make sure they do and take full advantage of this primed audience.
Ensure the ad format fits the channel
Newsletters are very different environments to the open web, so don't simply apply ad formats from the web and hope they'll work in your newsletter. While it's easy to do, it's lazy thinking and doomed to fail. Ban this old school thinking. Start exploring new customisable formats designed to be integrated into emails that complement the environment. By innovating around your formats, you'll elevate your in-email advertising, so your newsletter can become one of your most reliable profit-builders.
Gain control by having the right tech stack
Email newsletter success means having control over your content and personalising your in-email advertising. Even if you're using the new ad formats, if you're continuing to serve the same ads to every recipient, you're not being effective. Ensure your technology allows you to gather the critical data to inform your thinking and future activity. It must help you understand your recipients' preferences, what's working and what's not, what's resonating with readers and what's being overlooked, and what's driving activity, engagement, and sales. Your tech stack must also consider the viewer, so relevant ads are shown to them based on your first-party data. So make sure your platforms are set up to put you in control and keep you ahead of the competition.
Make email central to your marketing
Because executing an email newsletter campaign is easy, its value is overlooked. Often it's seen as a secondary channel to digital. Change your mindset, otherwise your email newsletters will have little value. Approach it as a critical, trusted channel delivering meaningful content to audiences that want it, look forward to receiving it, and that helps them discover new ideas, products, and services. Give it the same attention you would any of your primary channels because that's what it is.
Keep them focused
People sign up and engage with newsletters because they reflect what's of interest to them. Be it red wine, cats, Italian food or knitting, make sure your email is content-heavy about the subject – that's what they've signed up for. In this way, your audience and your content are in complete alignment. Building out newsletters focused on verticals within a topic area delivers strong, engaged audiences.
Engage your audiences in a future-proof channel
The regulatory and public concerns plaguing targeted advertising today don't exist in email newsletter marketing. Here, user data remains private and secure, so you're reaching an engaged audience in a compliant, safe, and effective way that doesn't rely on third-party cookies. Take full advantage of this future-proofed channel driven by first-party data, which provides the control and transparency needed to build subscriber trust.
Whether it's ad formats, technology, or layouts, keep testing your email newsletters to find out what works – then continue to test. This means you'll avoid them becoming staid and uninteresting, and they'll remain a critical and profitable channel for you.
By Andreas Jürgensen