Newsletters sell. Newsletters are much more than a fantastic marketing tool. A well-written newsletter will help shorten your customers’ purchase pathway. A newsletter will connect your customers to your company and message, and get your customers to act on your message.
But before we come to that, you must ask yourself:
1. What do you want to ‘sell’ in your newsletter?
2. Who is your recipient?
3. What outcome do you want from your newsletter?
4. What outcome should the recipient get from your newsletter?
Specifying requirements for the result of your newsletter may seem annoying. Perhaps you are already thinking: “No way. I’ll write the newsletters the way I usually do, because they have a good impact. Besides, I’m busy!”
Imagine if the outcome of your considerations was:
- a higher open rate, a higher click rate or additional sales;
- positive reactions and more ‘shares’ of your newsletter;
- being named the office’s “newsletter shark”.
Once you have noted down the goal of your newsletter, start the writing process. Fresh coffee, headphones, and your all-time favourite Spotify playlist are part of a creative writing process.
First find a good heading to get your customers to open your newsletter. If the heading changes during the process, this only means that you are honing your message.
After the heading come the contents. Write the most important things first. Extract the essence of your message with these five questions: who, what, where, when and why. Remember, your customers will not necessarily want to hear how wonderful your company is. Customers want useful knowledge and information. Knowledge that resolves a current or ongoing problem for them. Consider it your mission to give them a solution to the challenges rattling around inside their head and a call-to-action opportunity with help from your company.
Together with a good heading and five questions, you should also focus on the language in your newsletter. You can benefit from writing in an active voice. An active voice lightens your text and livens up your style. When you write in an active personal voice, you avoid phrases like: ‘It is advisable to order them well in advance’. Instead, it is better to write, ‘We recommend that you order [the product’s name] at [specific time], because [specific reason] ...’.
It takes courage to banish “habit” from the kingdom. But don’t worry, your goal is not to write a novel, but a good newsletter of 300 to 800 words that can be read in less than five minutes.
Happy writing and working.
P.S.: Did you know that the most highly read section of a newsletter is the P.S.? Perhaps this is where you can reiterate your ‘call to action’...