The newspaper industry may be dying, but the value of newsletters is flourishing. This may come as a surprise to many of our clients, but email marketing consistently shows the highest return on investment (ROI) of any major digital advertising channel. As a top San Francisco digital marketing agency, we consistently deliver the impressive results that keep our clients satisfied, and newsletters are one of our favorite tools. We use them whenever we can, because they’re simple, effective, highly cost-efficient, and incredibly versatile.
Learn about some of the different ways that newsletters earn their keep in our digital marketing toolkit:
Newsletters and email marketing are brilliant for lead building because of one simple fact: unlike other digital marketing channels, you’ve already got an “in.” By signing up for a newsletter, or giving you an email address, a potential customer has already made it clear that they’re open to building a professional relationship. By giving a contact address, they’ve demonstrated that they’re aware of who you are and what you do, and they’re telling you directly that they want to hear more.
Track Your Sales Cycle
For many businesses, the sales cycle is months or even years long. For long-term, high-value conversions, it can be tricky, especially early in a business’s life, to know precisely how that sales cycle plays out, or to know the optimal conversion path. In these cases, a newsletter marketing campaign, with a dedicated tracking code or landing page, is your best friend. You can track engagement with your brand over time, for a particular email address, to chart a person’s whole experience through a conversion path. It can tell you when to drive or when to ease up, and it can help you gauge whether your marketing efforts are making a connection.
Develop Customer Relationships
The relationship you forge with your customers doesn’t just evaporate when they do ultimately convert. Making a purchase isn’t an end point; rather, it’s one more step in the growth of the relationship you’re building. As the email marketing company SmartMail explains,
Send them emails with suggestions based on their browse and search history so they’ll not only be impressed with your super-targeted approach, but they’ll come running back to carry on shopping!
Say I buy a piece of jewelry. If I’m happy with the product, and I’ve had a good customer-service experience, odds are that I’d be willing to support the same seller again, right? Well, if she’s been emailing me every month with a newsletter that appeals to my interests, then, if I find myself in a position to buy something else, she’ll be foremost in my thoughts. But here’s the thing: in this example, it’s been almost a year since my last purchase. If she hasn’t kept my awareness of her business fresh with a newsletter or some other form of connection, then even if I had a wonderful experience, her business might not spring to mind as readily for me, and she might lose the sale.
Don’t get pushy about it (an unwelcome newsletter blitz will push someone to unsubscribe pretty quickly), but do use newsletters to reinvigorate established customer relationships.
Increase Awareness and Reach
While we’re on the subject of increasing awareness and keeping a relationship fresh, you can use newsletters to broaden the reach of your other content as well. Newsletters are more than just ad-flyers. They should have well-thought-out, compelling content, just like a blog post. Just like this blog post, we hope.
If you’re publishing content that you’re proud of, then absolutely do rework it into your newsletter campaigns so that you can get it in front of more eyes, increasing exposure, and ideally building your brand in the process.
Build Brand Cohesion
That brings us to another major benefit of newsletters. They can impress a reader with their content, dazzle them with their sophistication, show off your technical ability with a clever layout, or just reinforce the brand associations you’re building, with a mix of phrasing, shapes, colors, and so on. It’s one more avenue by which you can develop a comprehensive brand identity, and one more context in which that identity can evolve.
Position Yourself as an Industry Thought leader
Lots of people sign up for newsletters not because they intend to become customers, but because they want to stay up to date in a particular field or industry. As a business owner or digital marketer, that’s perfectly fine. In fact, it’s exactly what you want.
Your newsletter can corner the market in your particular field, and, as a trendsetter, you can position yourself as a “thought leader” in your industry. With a large enough readership, as you become an authority on a particular subject, your newsletter will make its way onto round-ups of “Ten Industry Newsletters You Should Subscribe To” and the like. You can leverage that traction on social media, you can increase subscribers to an RSS feed, and, most importantly, you can increase your overall site traffic and ideally increase conversions.
There’s no downside, and your humble newsletter will have done all the heavy lifting.
Understanding the Value of Newsletters
Just to summarize, if you work them into your standard content cycle, newsletters aren’t a tremendous undertaking, they can be sent to your whole contact list in a snap, and, since your readership expressed interest by signing up, you can expect to generate more engagement than you would with a blog post.
More than any other marketing avenue, newsletters continue to deliver the highest ROI, which is particularly impressive given their low investment cost (no matter how you calculate it), and on top of that, they can dovetail with the content that you’re already publishing.
To subscribe to our newsletter, put yourself on our mailing list at the bottom of this page, or, for the more direct approach, go ahead and take us up on our offer for a free digital marketing strategy session!
Colibri Digital Marketing
We’re a San Francisco digital marketing agency that focuses on the triple bottom line of people, planet, and profit. Based in the Bay Area, close to Silicon Valley, we’re the team with the sneak-peek into the future of digital marketing. If you’re ready to work with San Francisco’s first and only full-service B Corp-certified digital marketing agency, drop us a line or click below to schedule a free digital marketing strategy session!
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Originally published at colibridigitalmarketing.com on July 8, 2017.