Why every company should send a regular newsletter to the entire database
Unless your website sends automated emails to subscribers, you should send a regular newsletter to everyone on the database.
Why should our company send a newsletter?
There are many main reasons, but here are three key ones:
1. Cleans / updates data
Every company is only as good as the data it holds. Sending a newsletter checks your data, and gives you the following outputs:
- Pre-send hard bounces
- Post-send soft bounces
- Post-send hard bounces
- Out of office (OOO) replies
The four lists above are gold dust. Most companies ignore it, the smart ones do business from it.
All three types of bounces at least tell you that the data you had was incorrect (a mis-spelt email address for example) and at most tell you that that person has moved on.
This now gives you two leads:
Update the person who has moved on on your database (you should have a link to their Linkedin URL somewhere on their database record, so click that to see where they’ve gone). You can then contact them to congratulate them on their move. People who’ve started in a new role want to make a quick impact so now is the best time to remind them of your services before they choose someone else or go with the company’s usual provider. You should then repeat this for their replacement, either updating an existing record or adding a new one.
An Out of Office reply can often be even more important – giving you a list of people to contact in their absence, whether it be a planned holiday, maternity or an automated response saying they’ve move on. Often these OOOs contain multiple names, job titles, email addresses and mobile numbers.
If you want to be really swish you could even develop a really smart letter sent to senior people when they change job, offering to take them out to dinner and so on. And for that, you could even track changes in the business press.
2. Reminds people you exist
Chances are you’re not the only company in your sector, and more than likely it’s a crowded, competitive marketplace. You therefore need to keep your firm front of mind on a regular basis, so that you’re at least one of the firms being considered for whatever services are required.
After all, how often have you been told that your email was ‘good timing’ – the key to good timing is exactly that; timing itself.
Don’t expect to do business off it (unlike direct marketing say) but do expect to do hard-to-track business from it due to increased / maintained brand awareness. It’s not uncommon to get replies to newsletters months later when whatever you’re selling is required by the recipient.
3. Increases search engine ranking
The more people that visit your site, the higher your search engine ranking (if you’re wondering why we’ve not said Google ranking, have a think about what the default browser is from Microsoft Outlook. Hint: it’s not Google). Traffic is one of several main factors that affects Google ranking, so it’s important to get it as high as possible on a sustained basis. Comments on articles are another, so anything that increases interactions is good too. Google likes traffic from different sources, so make sure this is one of them. It’s pretty much free, so you’d be foolish not to.
What content should we include in our company’s newsletter?
Whatever you send, obey one golden rule: don’t be boring! Chances are that if you’re 100% honest with yourself, whatever you’re selling isn’t particularly riveting on its own – especially if you’re B2B Professional Services – so you have to do something to make it stand out.
There are many ways to do this, such as making each article completely different, having guest blogs, high profile interviews, case studies, recent success stories, compliance updates and so on. You should hope that each reader can read one article, so make sure there is something for everyone. And an intro is a must, lots of companies make the mistake of going straight into articles – which comes across as cold. People buy from people.
How often should our company send a newsletter?
Too much and people will unsubscribe, too little and it simply won’t be enough. Once a month is a fair frequency, and at the very least it should be quarterly. If you’re sending something like jobs to candidates it needs to be weekly to daily such is the turnaround.
What system should we use to send a company newsletter?
There are many email sending programmes, but remember that most will be designed for B2C use. One big mistake most firms make is using the market leader, which is not designed for B2B use. Because of this, emails that are sent from it look horrible in Outlook, with the sender name and address obscured and the images not rendering, resulting in unsubscribes, spam reports and general brand damage.
Some can integrate with your database, which is perfect for uploading lists. If not, it’s an export into a spreadsheet and an upload. Make sure you update unsubscribes back to your database in this case. You might also find that some old databases export into word documents. If so, you can copy and paste into a spreadsheet or .csv.
Who should I send it from?
There are several options here. Ideally it would be from a person, such as the CEO or the MD. If your database is segmented to each employee, send it from them. Make sure clients don’t get the same newsletter from two employees though! You can then redirect bounces, OOOs, replies etc to a centrally monitored account unless your employees are hands on and want to do it themselves (the sign of a good one is if they want to take ownership of / clean their own data).
Conversely, send it from <something>@<your business name>.com / .co.uk. DO NOT use the words sales@ or marketing@ – no one likes to be sold to! Use something softer like help@ or hello@. For this option, use your company name as the sender.
Anything else I need to know?
Like anything, the guide above is just touching the surface. Depending on your business and the angle you’re coming from, it might be that some areas are more relevant than others, and that some aren’t covered here at all.
If you want to have a free, confidential chat, OMA would be delighted to help. Feel free to email us on firstname.lastname@example.org or ring us on 01865 688 777.