Email Marketing Should be Much More than a Newsletter

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Email newsletters are great when you expect them to fulfill their roles within a marketing campaign. If you try to use them in an unfitting way, you'll probably be disappointed.Think of it this way. A golfer uses a driver to hit the ball hundreds of yards, but he needs to switch clubs afterwards. The decrease in yards of each following swing doesn't represent inefficiency, it just shows that he's getting closer to his goal.


"Newsletter" is not synonymous with "email marketing"

Treating your newsletter as your entire email marketing campaign is a huge waste of an opportunity. Still, this is what many businesses do.

They send monthly messages and go through the motions. They check "vanity metrics" and convince themselves that they're making progress, according to this Huffington Post article:

"Vanity metrics in this case are the data points that only tell a piece of the overall story around your email performance, and may even distract you from the metrics that matter. Even if you are following your objectives and are focused on specific metrics, are they the right ones? Focusing on open rates and click rates are fine. But if those are the only ones you’re monitoring, you’re missing an opportunity."

Email newsletters are great for reaching out to subscribers, but there are plenty of other options at your disposal. Let's take a look at other kinds of emails that target specific users, as opposed to your entire subscriber list.

Triggered emails

Here's a scenario: a prospective customer browsers your site, adds a couple of products to your cart, and disappears forever. Chances are, he's not coming back.

Unless you take the initiative. You already know he's interested in your products and now it's time to remind him. This Entrepreneur article explains how you can send triggered emails to get the job done:

"One of the toughest realities you have to face as an online business is that a huge -- and I mean HUGE -- portion of people will go through your sales process, from their first visit to your website right to the checkout, and then drop off. Devise a means of conducting email follow up with cart abandoners and consider integrating one of these email marketing systems with your checkout system to make following up easy."

Triggered emails are a way of winning subscribers back. You send them right before an inactive lead becomes totally irrelevant.

These are also useful for welcome messages, birthday wishes, and feedback requests. Any time you want to remind a specific subscriber about your business.

Transactional emails 

Transactional emails are something we're all used to. In fact, if we never receive one, we get worried that there's something wrong with our order.

These emails are typically used for confirmation messages. After someone purchases a product on your website, you send them an email with a receipt. Transactional emails are also used for dispatch confirmation and estimated shipping dates.

The main difference between our two groups (newsletter vs. triggered and transactional emails) is the target audience. When you send a newsletter, you usually target your entire subscriber list. There is room for personalization, but it won't get any more specific than demographics and user behavior.

When you incorporate triggered and transactional emails into your campaign, however, you can target individual users. These opportunities are often critical for getting prospective customers to place an order or return to your business. Not taking advantage of them is a choice, and not one we'd recommend.

Don't fall into the trap of exclusively sending newsletter messages in your email campaign. To talk more about email marketing, or anything else, contact us today.