Newsletters 101 – Back to the Basics

Newsletter Best PracticesBy Barbara Pfeiffer, The Partner Marketing Group

Years ago, almost all the marketing training and webinars I conducted had some PowerPoint slides about newsletters. Mostly about how bad so many were and how ineffective they were for nurture and lead generation activities. Fast forward at least 6 or 7 years and sad to say, I am still using the same slides. So with that in mind I thought a back to basics post with a few newsletter best practices was in order.

1. Do you really need a Newsletter?

There are a few good reasons to have a newsletter, including:

  • giving people something to sign up for (to help build your contact list)
  • nurturing your prospects (so you can stay top of mind)
  • nurturing your customers (also so you can stay top of mind)

However, that doesn’t mean you HAVE to have a newsletter. If you are accomplishing these goals in other ways, then you may not need a newsletter.  Assuming you do need one, and you know what you are trying to achieve, you’re one step closer to building a better newsletter. And here’s the first caveat – one size does not fit all. If your goals are “all of the above,” then that’s going to require three different newsletters (maybe more). Which brings us to the second – and most important – point.

2. Keep it relevant.

Regardless of your goals, you need to send your subscribers information they actually want and need. If you don’t, prospects will unsubscribe and customers will delete it without reading. So, what do they want or need? Typically, information that helps them do their job better and keeps them up to date on trends that are relevant to their industry (or role). If your newsletter is a litany of product updates, news about your company, and announcements about your upcoming events, it’s less likely to get read. (Although some version of this COULD work for your customer base).

That brings us to the final point and what is probably the biggest reason for all the bad newsletters out there – TIME.

3. Keep it simple.

Creating two newsletters (one for prospects and one for customers) is tough enough. If you have to start doing it by industry or by role, it can be overwhelming. So what do you do? Begin by keeping it simple. Hopefully, you’re blogging regularly and creating blogs for your different target markets. If so – you’re halfway there. Just use a blog post as the feature article in each month’s newsletter (insert a few lines or a synopsis). Build on that with content you’ve curated from around the web. This is much easier than trying to create all new content every month and most readers WILL value the time you took to find the few thought leadership articles or pieces they may have missed.

Of course, if using an approach like this is too challenging, maybe you have too many targets and you’ll need to prioritize. Because ultimately, if people don’t read it, it’s not worth doing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Latest Posts
19 Mar 2019

Limited Marketing Resources? Poor Results? Go Deeper, Not Wider

Written by: Barbara Pfeiffer, The Partner Marketing Group
I’ve yet to talk to a marketer at a software/technology reseller or ISV that has all the resources they need to accomplish their goals. While surveys regularly show B2B CMOs investing an average of 7% of gross revenue in marketing, it’s still not happening with most VARs

Latest Posts
07 Feb 2019

2019 Social Media Image Size Guide – Download and Print

Written by: Michelle Etherton, The Partner Marketing Group
This 2019 Social Media Image Size Guide will be your best friend.
Social media is one of the top marketing tactics for B2B marketing, and it’s no secret that visuals are the most effective way to capture attention on any social platform. Admit it, you scroll through

Latest Posts
15 Jan 2019

Want to Sell More Software? 3 Reasons to Start Targeting the CMO

Written by: Michelle Glennie, The Partner Marketing Group
With the customer experience driving digital transformation, software partners must shift their sales and marketing approach if they want to sell more software. The CMO is the strategic force behind customer experience and, therefore, an important decision maker for software purchases.
So where should you start? When

Latest Posts
08 Jan 2019

Top 5 Technology Marketing Blogs of 2018

Written by: Michelle Etherton, The Partner Marketing Group
The start of a new year usually brings about countdowns of favorites and chart-toppers over the past year, and marketing is no different! What were the hottest technology marketing trends and topics in 2018?
Based on our top performing articles over the past year, we’ve brought you

Latest Posts
10 Dec 2018

Nurture Marketing Series 4 of 4: Trial Nurture Marketing Campaign Best Practices for B2B Companies

Written by: Barbara Pfeiffer, The Partner Marketing Group
Through this series, you’ve learned what nurture marketing is, how to create a drip nurture campaign to stay top of mind and how to move a prospect through the sales process with trigger based nurture marketing campaigns. Now we will walk through how you can create trial