How often should I send emails? What types of information should I include? These are questions pondered by every marketer regardless of their experience. The answer is simple. There is no right answer. At least not one that is universally correct. Each business has a unique set of subscribers with an equally unique set of expectations as to what they’re going to receive in their inbox. That said, taking a look at what we know lets us develop some general best practices.
Find your timing.
If you’re just starting out in your email marketing adventures, a monthly newsletter or email campaign is a good place to start. Any less than monthly, and you are minimizing the benefits inherent in email marketing: your brand is no longer a consistent presence in your recipient’s inbox, your emails are not frequent enough to prompt the “right time right place” conversions, and your information is less-likely to be timely and relevant.
Keep in mind this is a general rule-of-thumb for those just testing the waters. The more likely scenario is that one email campaign per month is not enough, and the data backs this up. Let’s look at open rates for example: research proves that using words like “daily” or “weekly” in the subject line increases open rates, while “monthly” hurts them. Why? Because words like “daily” and “weekly” create urgency – and insist that information contained within is current and important. Remember, a proper email list is opt-in which means subscribers have already told you they want to hear from you.
But what do they want to hear from you?
In the world of digital marketing, content is king. If you’re worried about your subscribers being bothered by the frequency of your emails, you probably aren’t sending them the emails they want to read. Just like testing frequency to find the ideal quantity of emails, testing the type of content to find the information your subscribers actually engage with is equally (if not more) important.
So what should you send? It’s important to find a balance. Not every email you send has to be trying to sell something. Depending on your industry, informational emails with insightful content like tips and best practices will shape your brand into a thought-leader and keep readers engaged. Do your readers want only promotions? Probably not (although definitely sometimes). Do they respond to videos, infographics, blog content, company updates, and case studies/testimonials? Probably. Among the many reasons a reader may unsubscribe from your emails, disinterest in the content they receive is among the most common. Testing different types of content in your email campains will let you find the proper mix that keeps your readers engaged, while furthering your marketing & sales objectives.