How many newsletters do you sign up for in a month? How many do you unsubscribe from in the same month because the content just isn’t good?
I’ve read hundreds of articles about sending out newsletters and the main advice in these articles is that the material must be compelling. It’s often the writer’s of these articles that have the least compelling material in their newsletter. Go figure.
In my opinion, a newsletter is separate from having blog updates emailed to you. A newsletter is a special addition (or edition) sent out on a certain schedule. It really irks me when I get a newsletter that is simply the highlights from the month’s blog posts. I get that in daily email—I don’t need a rehashed version. I don’t mind if the newsletter contains links to a few of the best posts—but the body of the newsletter itself should be material I didn’t find on the website or blog.
Does anyone else feel this way?
I don’t send out a newsletter for the Stafford Scribe for several reasons. One, I don’t have time to come up with enough fresh, compelling material specifically for a newsletter. Two, I refuse to send out a newsletter that’s basically rehashed blog posts—that’s what the daily email is for. I wish other sites would follow my rules. LOL.
Your local newspaper does not rehash the previous days’ news—why would you want your newsletter to be a rehash?
The second thing I hate is to sign up for a newsletter and then receive daily “specials.” I don’t mind a special mailing—as long as it really is special. But daily emails? This tells me that the writer is not concerned with giving me the best information he can—he’s simply after a sale. As a marketing strategy, I understand this concept—that’s how it is. But don’t fill my inbox every single day with the latest, greatest offer. I’m simply not interested and after a week of this, I’m off your list. Sorry.
The third thing I hate is, after getting the initial sales pitch, I get another email within an hour—you know the one—the “Oops, I’m sorry,” email, because they messed up the first one. Yeah, an intentional mistake just so you can send me more email. I’m off your list. Sorry.
I’m not an authority or expert on newsletters. I am, however, your typical blog reader and subscriber, so I think I can give you a few tips on what I want and speak for the rest of us average readers out there. If you’re losing subscribers to your newsletter, this list could help you.
1.) Give me a kick-ass newsletter. Fill it full of fresh, unique, mind-gripping material that’s not available on your website. Make me anxious for your next newsletter too.
2.) Don’t send me daily email specials. Once a week is plenty.
3.) Make sure your “special,” “great deal” or “one time offer” is really special and worth my time. Time is money, and if you want either from me, give me a great deal.
4.) Don’t send me the, “Oops, I screwed up” email. Get it right the first time. Yes, we all make mistakes and sometimes need to correct things—please don’t make it a habit in the hopes that you’ll get through to me. You won’t.
5.) Offer me something new—don’t offer me the same old bullshit that everyone else is.
6.) Do not send me to a mile-long sales pitch page. I know, they claim that long sales copy will get the sale quicker than the short copy. But let’s face it—people are short on time these days, the long copy just annoys the heck out of most people and it’s simply over-kill. I—the average reader here—will read about one-forth of the material before I’m bored. At that point, I’m closing the page or scrolling to the bottom to find the price.
7.) Don’t talk down to me. Sometimes it isn’t obvious that you’re talking down to someone else, but your material can come across that way. Assume I’m smart and a good decision maker—then write from that assumption.
This is not an extensive list, but it can help you reach and retain the average reader. People are in a hurry and easily annoyed these days. You have to grab their attention and keep it by giving them compelling information and something to look forward to each month. Make them feel like every month is like getting a birthday present.