How to create a newsletter that increase sales
It is not particularly difficult to create attractively designed
newsletters if you have the right program, but unfortunately that alone
will not suffice if you wish to use newsletters as an effective method
for selling products and services. In order to create newsletters for
the purpose of increasing your sales there are many other factors you
need to take into consideration if you wish to achieve a successful
result. You must create newsletters in which the message is tailored to
the recipients - both in terms of content, text and the design itself.
These 11 tips will help you create
newsletters that improve the likelihood of you increasing the sales of
your products and services.
1. Should you
create newsletters that are short or long?
Nobody reads a newsletter they think is
irrelevant. Consequently, you should always try to include the most
important information at the start of your newsletter so that your offer
or message is "crystal clear". An appropriate length for the
newsletter depends on whether your offer or message can be communicated
in a few lines, or if it needs to be complemented with additional
information. There is nothing wrong with creating a long newsletter if
it makes it easier for your customers to decide to buy something.
2. What does the
content in your newsletters look like?
We all receive a lot of advertising via
regular ”snail mail”. There must be something special about a letter if
it is to avoid being thrown directly into the waste paper basket. It
might be something "hard" inside, for instance a pen or a sweet.
Naturally, we still know that it is advertising, but if there is an
object inside we become curious and open it anyway. A vital objective of
the selling process is thus achieved, namely that the recipient has
opened the letter.
The same principle applies to e-mail,
although in this context it is even more important because the amount of
e-mail correspondence being sent is increasing all the time.
Consequently, your newsletter must stand out in some way. Try to create
newsletters that have a unique design. Use pictures that grab the
attention of the reader. Or why not use sound? How often have you
received a newsletter with a personal greeting that is relayed through
the computer's speakers?
3. Can you create
If possible, try to create newsletters that
have a personal touch. You can do this by placing the recipient's name
at suitable locations in the text, such as directly after a greeting
(for example: "Hello Tony!"). You can even place the recipient's name in
the newsletter's subject line e.g. "Important information for Tony
Blair". Furthermore, you can also place the recipient's name at
strategically important locations in the main text, for example:
"Tony, we are sending you this e-mail because...".
All these measures create a personal
feel and significantly increase the likelihood that the reader will read
your newsletter carefully. The reader will react if he/she spots his/her
own name in the text, and curiosity will cause the reader to read the
text more carefully. This is due to the fact that the use of names is
still relatively uncommon in e-mail marketing, and because people have
an ability to spot certain special words, including their own name, in a
text - even if the text is very long.
In order to be able to create
personalised newsletters, you must use an e-mail program that allows you
to use data fields in the newsletter's text. Such a program replaces the
data fields with the recipient's name and other personalised details
during an e-mailing, so that every e-mail recipient receives a
newsletter that feels unique for him/her.
newsletters that are easy to read
The first thing your customer does when
he/she receives your newsletter is to quickly scan its contents.
Headings, subheadings and even a "PS" at the end should concisely and
clearly summarise the content of your newsletter.
Below we list some of the most
important points that you should think about when you design the text in
line and the headings should capture the reader's attention. They
will determine whether he/she reads the remainder of your
primary benefit with your offer in a way that the customers can take
directly to heart.
the customer, not about you and your company. Make sure that you use
words such as "you" and "your" instead of words
like "I", "we" and "our" in the text.
sentences and simple words that make it easier for the reader to
read the text.
newsletter in much the same way as you normally talk, and read your
text out loud to yourself while imagining that you have the customer
in front of you.
style of the language you use to suit the customer. Avoid using
words and terms that the reader doesn't understand, because such
words and terms will make the recipient of your newsletter feel
Feel free to
highlight important parts of the text in bold print.
It is OK to
start sentences with "And" or "But" if
necessary. The most important thing is to achieve a text that is
easy to read, and that quickly allows your customers to understand
the message in your newsletter.
More information is available in the article
Useful tips for those of you
that write your own newsletters.
5. Is your
newsletter being sent to existing or potential customers?
The right style and approach to use for your
offer or message is determined by the relationship you have to the
recipients of your newsletter. If the recipients are existing customers
that have made purchases from you previously, it is possible to use a
more personal tone in your newsletter and to be fairly direct when
conveying your offer or message. Feel free to relate your current offer
or message to the products or services that the customers have purchased
previously, and to provide them with some sort of benefit as a
consequence. If the recipients of your newsletter have not previously
made a purchase from you, it is important to ensure that you gain their
confidence so they don't feel that there is any sort of "risk"
involved with buying goods or services from you. You can do this by:
advantageous terms & conditions, for example "We offer a money
back guarantee to any customer that is not fully satisfied with our
warranties, for example "We exchange any faulty products free
of charge within 24 hours". This shows that you offer excellent
service and that you have a high degree of faith in your products.
advantageous payment terms, for example "Payment is due 30 days
after invoice date".
customer an attractive introductory offer with a good discount.
well-known companies that are satisfied with your products as
the advantages you offer compared to your competitors.
6. How is the
offer or message in your newsletter structured?
Avoid trying to use too much
"force" when selling, because offers that are "too" fantastic
run the risk of seeming too good to be true. Be clear and credible and,
above all else, ensure that you deliver what you promise! It is much
easier to get a satisfied customer to buy again in the future than it is
a dissatisfied one. Avoid using words that generalise too much, it is
better to write "85%" or "9/10" than to write
"many" or "most".
But the offer or message in your
newsletter must provide the customer with something special. You should
highlight the advantages with your offer so that the recipient can see
them from his/her perspective and can immediately realise the benefits
involved with accepting your offer. If you have any direct competitors,
make it clear why your particular offer is so good.
7. What should you
do if your offer involves some sort of disadvantage for the customer?
If your offer involves some sort of obvious
disadvantage for the customer you should not try to hide that fact.
Anticipate the customer's potential objections and meet them with sound
counter arguments. Show why the problem isn't as big as it might seem,
and explain how it can be resolved. Furthermore, highlight the benefits
that compensate for the potential disadvantage with your offer. Being
honest with the customer is also an effective way of increasing the
credibility of your offer.
8. Why should the
customer make a purchase at this particular point in time?
Create newsletters with an offer or a
message that is of a pressing nature, and impose a final date for
placing an order. Remember that offers sent via e-mail have a shorter
lifespan than those sent by regular post (people tend not to save
newsletters), so try to get the reader to place an order as quickly as
possible. You can do this by running campaigns that are of shorter
duration than is normally the case with traditional letters sent by
9. Does your
newsletter include some sort of bonus?
Give the reader of your newsletter something
"extra". It could be some sort of promotional item, or a particularly
good discount. Eveyone wants to feel special and to believe that they
are getting a good deal. The bonus you offer should be the "icing on the
cake" that means that your customer doesn't hesitate but instead feels
that it is just as well to place an order at once.
If your newsletter is structured more
or less as a normal letter, you can include information about a bonus in
a "PS", for example:
If you place your order today you will receive a gold pen into the
Surveys indicate that people read a
"PS" surprisingly often, since they want to see who has signed the
letter, and the "PS" is often positioned directly under the signature.
10. Who has signed
The signatory is an important aspect of your
newsletters. The sender's signature/name helps to determine the value,
credibility and significance of the offer or message for the reader.
Have you had most of the personal contact with the customer, or has
someone else at your company been the customer's regular contact person?
Ideally, the person seen to be the sender of the newsletter should be
someone familiar to the customer.
11. Do you have
someone who proofreads the text in your newsletter?
Wait a few days after writing the text in
your newsletter, and then read it again. All mistakes, ambiguities and
careless errors that you didn't initially pick up will often be apparent
the second time around, at which point they can be corrected.
Let your friends and colleagues read
your newsletter. If they say "It's fine" then unfortunately it
is probably not very good. If they say "Do you really get a gold
pen if you respond within 10 days?!" - then it's good!. You must
get the people who proofread your newsletter to REACT to the content,
and not just be polite; as polite is something that the recipients of
your newsletter will not be!
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