1. DO make your subject lines short & clear.
Or at least put the most important info first. Writing clear subject lines makes it easy for your readers to decide whether to read your email and saves them time. We all like it when people save us time, right?
2. DON'T OVERUSE CAPITAL LETTERS & EXCLAMATION POINTS!!!
This is especially important in subject lines, but applies to the body of your newsletter, too. Your subscribers get hundreds of emails every week. Don’t scare them off with cyber-yelling. Instead, write something interesting, pertinent, or funny to get their attention. You can also use bold to emphasize super cool content.
3. DO save underlining for hyperlinks.
Even if you're using methods other than underlining to indicate links, most people will assume underlined words are a hyperlink to another source. (Even typing that makes me think I should click on it!)
4. DON’T use spam trigger words in your subject line.
You don’t want your newsletter to end up in your readers’ spam folders, so don’t give spam filters any bait. Avoid using words that are common triggers for spam filters, especially words like these:
• All New
• Limited time
Not only can they land your newsletter in the spam folder, words like these, and even words like Help, Reminder, and Percent Off can lead to sales resistance in your readers and lower your open rate.
Avoid these trigger words by rewording your subject line. Or you can focus your subject line on other topics in your newsletter — and highlight special sales or promotions in the body of the message (like we did in our May Newsletter).
Hubspot has an interesting blog post with an extensive list of spam trigger words here.
5. DO proofread your content.
Or, better yet, have a trusted friend or colleague proofread it for you. If you’ve been working on your newsletter for a while, it is easy to overlook typos. It’s also a Good idea to have Someone double check you’re grammar, splling, and punctuation so you don’t Make Mistakes that might could will confuse your readers or embarrass you...😉
Strategies, Tips, and Tools of the Trade...
1. DO make your subject lines short & clear.
What should I write about?
One of the biggest stumbling blocks we face when we’re writing a newsletter is figuring out what to write about. Whether you need ideas for your next newsletter (or your first!), asking yourself 3 questions can help you choose a topic that benefits your clients and your business.
Question 1. Why am I writing?
It is truly challenging to write a weekly, monthly, or even quarterly newsletter if you don’t know why you’re doing it. So ask yourself, “Why am I writing this newsletter?”
Your answer to that question will guide the content of your newsletter. For example:
I’m writing because I want to….
...increase my connection with my customers or audience. Your newsletter may include personal stories or observations. Sharing these conveys the human side of your business and builds relationship with your clients.
...provide tools, tips, and helpful information. You know what you offer your clients with your regular work. But a newsletter with helpful tips and information can be a great way to add value to your services.
...announce new services, policies, and other business information. A regular newsletter is a great way to get important info out to your people. Even if you repeat info you provide in other ways, including it in a newsletter assures you’ve reached out to each of your clients at least once. With the flood of information we all face each day, a regular newsletter can be an important resource for you and for your clients.
...express my mission and values. Every interaction you have with your customers is an opportunity to communicate your mission. Your newsletter can do that work as well with content that empowers, teaches, or connects.
...expand my reach. Your newsletter is a tangible (and easy) way for your existing customers to spread the word about you. Your people love working with you. Make it easy for them to share that love by offering good information (and an easy “forward to a friend” link) in your newsletters.
Question 2. What do my clients need?
Once you’ve figured out why you’re writing the newsletter, the next thing to consider is why your clients would want to read it. Before you put pen to paper (I mean fingers to keyboard!), think about what your clients or audience need. Do they need encouragement? Helpful tips? Reminders about upcoming events or sales? Something to laugh about? Knowing this will help you choose a topic that serves your mission and your clients well.
Question 3. Who benefits from working with me?
It’s hard to write a newsletter for a generic someone. You need to know who you’re writing for. Think about what makes you and your business special, and how your unique blend of service, talent, and personality helps your customers. Who else would benefit from working with you? Who do you want to work with?
Knowing what you have to offer, who it benefits, and who your ideal customers are helps you make stronger connections with your audience and can help you choose useful and interesting topics for your newsletters.