eNewsletters are designed to be the lighter side of content marketing, so have fun with them! …to a point.
You want your eNewsletter to be entertaining but still informative and professional, so there’s definitely a line to draw over what’s relevant and appropriate. As the expert for knowing what your business is all about, it’s up to you to know where to draw that line.
The Entertainment : Information Ratio
There’s no magic formula for determining what the ratio of “fluff” content to “informational” content should be for your eNewsletter. This ratio can really only be determined by looking at:
- your business’s industry;
- the length of your newsletter;
- the frequency of your eNewsletter issues; and
- the makeup of your readership.
The industry you’re in has a large impact on what kind of content you should feature. If you’re a personal injury law firm, you’re going to want to feature content that’s relevant to safety, health and personal life. Therefore, a ratio close to 75 percent informative and useful information about injuries, health, and safety with a 25 percent fun content like local news, fun office stories, or attorney spotlights should work for your eNewsletter.
The length of your eNewsletter is also important to factor into your content style. If you have a 2-4 page magazine-style newsletter, you’ll need to break it up into articles and small feature boxes. Keep a good balance of longer articles and shorter feature boxes to ensure your readers don’t get bored on any one page.
Monthly eNewsletters are the norm, but if you publish more frequently you’ll need to make sure your content is engaging so readers are apt to open it every time you send it. Less frequent mailings still need to be entertaining, but they may lean toward the more informative side since you have so much that can happen between issues that your clients need to know.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, you need to know what your audience wants to read. If you run a law firm that focuses a great deal on motorcycle accidents, you can figure that most of your clients are motorcycle enthusiasts. Some great content ideas would be features on new safety features for bikes, local spots for riding, and an event calendar for local riding groups, meet-ups or charity runs.
Test Your Content Popularity
If you’re really dedicated to learning what does and doesn’t work with your eNewsletter content there’s no easier way to find out than to ask! After a few issues have gone out, you may want to utilize a free web poll service like SurveyMonkey or Google Docs’ survey tool. Do a short questionnaire asking what types of articles/content your readers liked and disliked, what they’d like to see more of, and ask for suggestions.
After a few issues and some reader feedback you should be able to evaluate your eNewsletter content and develop a solid plan to keep the great issues coming month after month!
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