The importance of planning your email newsletter campaign
Spontaneous content is great and reading something that has clearly reacted to current issues in your market area can show that your organisation is on the ball and relevant. However, this doesn’t mean that you should always hold back on planning your content until a couple of days before the campaign send dates.
Planning your content in advance means that you can minimise the risk of overlooking topics and information that will be useful to your audience and in turn, create a worthwhile campaign.
What do you want your campaign to achieve? There’s no point in continuing with certain campaigns, if the justification behind them is because ‘we’ve always sent it’. If you are embarking on fruitless campaigns that add nothing then ultimately you’re costing your company in time and funds. If you don’t set objectives then there’s no way to measure the success of the campaign and consequently no way of using it to inform other business decisions. If there are no targets then a campaign can meander along with meaningless content.
Set the tone
This point sits closely with drawing up your objectives. You need to decide what messages you want to regularly communicate to your audience. You can split the messages into two camps. What’re the overarching messages you’d like to get across, so that you can keep these in mind with each part of the campaign. And secondly, be more specific with each part of the campaign and propose a set of messages that are catered for the topics in that week/month. By always having the ultimate tone/messages driving the campaign, it makes your content more consistent and effective.
Check and Test your campaign
We’ve all been there, you’ve been looking over the same content for the last couple of days and it all seems to blur into one. This is when mistakes can get overlooked and simple issues don’t seem as obvious. It’s always useful to get a colleague to read over the content produced because a fresh pair of eyes can work wonders if you want to tighten up your content. Always keep your target audience in mind, if you know anyone that fits into this bracket, it might be worth letting them have a look over your content too, to see whether it appeals to them and if they can add any useful ideas that you hadn’t thought of.
If you’ve got the tools to measure open/engagement rates with your campaigns then you should use this information to help plan the timing of your new campaigns. Have a look at the opening times that have been most successful when sending your content. It’s important to contextualise your audience, for example, if you’re sending out content to teachers or professionals in the education sector then it might not be worthwhile sending content in the school holidays or during teaching times.
Do you have enough content to send weekly updates or will you be scraping the barrel and end up sending a sub-standard piece of marketing that ends up affecting the overall campaign? Work out how much quality content you’ll have and determine the regularity of your campaign…and then stick to it!
As mentioned in the introduction, it’s really important to plan your campaign in advance but you can’t account for all of the changes in your sector! It’s a good idea to leave room for spontaneous content, which can keep your campaign looking fresh, exciting and informative.