1. Use an email marketing tool
Even if you are just starting out with email marketing list of recipients and it is still very small, you should work with a professional email marketing tool that automates processes:
On the one hand, sending e-mails in this way is fully automatic, uncomplicated and fast. This not only saves you time, but also avoids careless mistakes that often occur when sending individual e-mails manually, such as typing errors in the recipient address or the body of the e-mail.
In addition, commercially available e-mail clients harbor the risk that e-mails sent en masse will be intercepted by the spam filters of the recipients . The servers of professional e-mail marketing software, on the other hand, are on the most important whitelists – for example the Certified Senders Alliance – and are therefore classified as trustworthy .
Find the right newsletter tool
There are a variety of free and paid email marketing tools that offer secure delivery, automation, and personalization. The so-called CRM tools (customer relationship management tools) also contain many other useful functions for lead generation and customer management.
Your newsletter software should have the following properties :
simple and intuitive operation, large selection of ready -made responsive email templates , Segmentation function to send mailings only to a specific target group detailed reports to evaluate the e-mail marketing campaigns .
2. Harness the power of a strong call-to-action
Successful newsletters have one thing in common: the call-to-action button (CTA) with a clear call to action. After all, the recipients should ideally not just skim the newsletter, but also become active – for example by continuing their purchase in the online shop or reading the latest blog article. 78% of marketers have seen an increase in email engagement rates over the past 12 months.
When designing the CTA, keep the following in mind:
It should be short and concise in active language. Its effect can be enhanced by urgency (" Today only "). The design of the CTA should stand out from the environment with a contrasting color . It is recommended to place it in the top third of the newsletter so that it is not overlooked.
For example, successful CTAs should look like this:
” Download e-book now “
” Register now for the seminar “
” Get a 20% discount immediately “Double opt-in procedure, imprint and Co.: Observe legal requirements
The sending of advertising e-mails is closely regulated by numerous laws, including the Telemedia Act (TMG), the Federal Data Protection Act (BDSG) and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
If you want to avoid warnings, you should definitely deal with the legal framework for sending e-mails. These include the following points, among others:
3. Double opt-in
The GDPR stipulates that recipients of newsletters must have demonstrably and expressly consented to the inclusion of the newsletter distribution list. This requirement can only be correctly implemented with the so-called double opt-in procedure .
The recipient not only has to give permission to send the e-mails with a mouse click when entering their data, but also confirm this via a link (in an e-mail sent to them).
In your mandatory data protection declaration, you should also address the newsletter and explain how you process the data collected in this way.
Here you can also emphasize that you are not selling the collected e-mail addresses or otherwise acting in a dubious manner, thereby earning a trust bonus.
In the registration form for the newsletter, only the most necessary data may be requested as a mandatory field. This is usually the e-mail address and the name.
Insert unsubscribe link
Each newsletter must contain an unsubscribe link. This is to guarantee that the subscriber can unsubscribe from the distribution list with one click.
Each newsletter must be provided with an imprint
4. Put on the customer glasses
When choosing a topic for the newsletter , the problems and needs of the customers should come first. Put yourself in the shoes of your newsletter recipients:
Why did they subscribe to your newsletter? What added value do you expect?
Then you can offer them exactly that. For example, with informative links, a detailed blog article , a guide or a video tutorial . Newsletters that do not address the needs of their target group accumulate unread in the mailbox.
5. Formulate compelling subject lines
Why are some e-mails opened by the recipients and others disappear unread in the trash? The first impression of the e-mail is decisive here – meaning the subject line .
To arouse curiosity about the e-mail, it should stand out from the mass of e-mails, emphasize clear benefits for the recipient and use a personalized approach. Yes Marketing found in 2017 that recipients open emails with a personalized subject line 50% more often than emails without a personalized subject line – however, only 2% of all emails are personalised.
Also, keep it short, because the subject line is shortened in the mobile view. According to a study by AWeber , email subject lines are on average 43.85 characters long. And watch out: certain keywords let the spam filter sound the alarm – you should definitely delete these from your formulation repertoire.
6. Write an engaging email opening
However, many e-mail programs not only display the subject line of an incoming e-mail, but also the first lines of the text body – the so-called preheader . Accordingly, this must also be convincing in order for the mail to be opened.
So use the extra characters wisely to communicate the appeal of the email more clearly. While the subject catches the recipient’s attention, the preheader can address the more concrete added value. A good combination of subject and preheader can look like this:
” Lisa, happy birthday! “
7. Use personalized sender names
For the e-mail recipient, it should be clear at first glance who the sender of the newsletter is:
Use a meaningful sender name, ideally the name of a contact person in your company. This has a more personal and trustworthy effect than the mere company name.
8. Calculate realistic costs
Consumers prefer to communicate with companies via email, which is a good reason for email marketers to take a closer look at the topic. They are currently generating a profit of $42 for every dollar wagered .
In contrast to classic print mailings, there are no printing or postage costs with e-mail marketing . Nevertheless, you should plan a sufficiently high budget. Because the newsletters have to be written and designed in an appealing way, which freelancers or an agency may have to do.
You may also use a paid and powerful CRM tool to send the emails, which is also initially reflected in the budget, even if it saves you costs in the long term.
At the same time, you have to invest in marketing measures that induce users to sign up for a newsletter in the first place. So while email marketing is an efficient tool, don’t underestimate the resources it requires.
9. Set the correct frequency
Regularity pays off when sending newsletters , because the recipients can count on you. Choosing the right frequency is not that easy:
On the one hand, users should be promptly informed about news and offers , on the other hand they don’t want to be hassled with e-mails: half of the participants in a survey on the subject unsubscribed from the newsletter because of too many e-mails.
Therefore, ask yourself how often you can provide your subscribers with really relevant content and it is best to ask members of your target group how often they would like to receive the newsletter. 35% of marketers send 3-5 emails to their customers per week.
The option of letting your subscribers individually choose the topics on which they would like to be notified has also proven itself .
10. Choose the best time to send
An identical e-mail is not equally successful at all times. Opinions differ widely as to which day and time is best. They also vary depending on the industry and target group. Accordingly, you should about A/B tests to find out for yourself when your emails resonate the most.
Two general rules can be stated for the optimal time of dispatch:
Most emails are opened between the early hours and mid-morning.Interest levels off in the afternoon , but increases again later in the evening. The individual days of the week differ only marginally in terms of opening rates. With one exception: this weekend is not a good time to get through to email recipients.
11. Take segmentation and personalization seriously
Addressing users individually conveys closeness and a personal bond. In this way you avoid the impression of an undifferentiated mass e-mail that is often associated with newsletters. It has long been outdated to send a single run-of-the-mill campaign through the entire e-mail distribution list without taking into account who the recipients are.
Here are some examples of how emails can be personalized :
Talk to your subscribers name . Send out newsletters on the occasion of regional or personal events (e.g. public holidays, birthdays). Use an employee 's email address and signature instead of just the impersonal company name.
Also, try to learn as much about your subscribers as possible so you can get a concrete picture of the person, their goals , and aspirations .
Then segment the subscribers as gradually as possible buyer personas . In this way, you can offer individual newsletters for exactly these target groups, for example based on the interests of the customers.
12. Mobile optimization of the newsletter
A study with users of Web.de and GMX shows that in the entire DACH region, newsletters are now preferably read on mobile devices. It is therefore essential to optimize the newsletter for smartphones and tablets as well.
Specifically, this means:
The most important information belongs at the beginning of an e-mail. Pictures and videos sparingly . A responsive design is mandatory for email templates. Clear division of the text into short sections. Large CTA buttons that are easy to click, even on mobile phones.
13. Implement clear and concise design
As the intensive mobile use already indicates, e-mails are often read casually: on the train, during the lunch break or in the queue at the supermarket. Accordingly, users want to receive relevant information at first glance, without having to first read a long block of text.
Therefore, make sure that your newsletter has a clear structure : Use many paragraphs and structure the text with lists and headings. You should also avoid long, complicated sentences in favor of short, concise statements.
Images should always be used with caution in newsletters . Because the more images are used, the larger the file becomes and the longer mobile users have to wait until the newsletter is fully loaded. There is a risk that the recipient will impatiently close the newsletter without having read it.
14. Check the newsletter in advance
Nothing is more annoying than sending out a newsletter, only to find out that the error devil has crept in.
It is therefore advisable to test the newsletter on colleagues and different e-mail clients . In this way you ensure that the mail is successfully delivered everywhere, is displayed correctly and that you may discover one or the other typo.
15. Test, test, test
Email marketing is subject to constant change. With subscriber preferences changing, policies evolving, and email software evolving, we’ve seen best practices come and go. If you want to be successful in email marketing, you too must react to these changes as quickly and agilely as possible.
If you’re not sure whether your recipients will respond positively to changes, you could resort to A/B testing. If you want to get insights quickly, tests and experiments are the best tools.
Companies that see email A/B testing and experimentation as an integral part of their email marketing strategy are proven to perform well. Studies show that marketers who A/B test every email have a 37% higher ROI on their email marketing than those who don’t use A/B testing at all.
Here’s how an A/B test can help you try new trends in subject lines or email design and identify the best version. However, make sure that you only focus on a single element in the A/B test and that you run your tests on the correct sample size in order to achieve statistically relevant results.