7 reasons no one reads your newsletter

Web.com Team

Is your newsletter open rate miserable – or worse? If no one is opening your newsletter, let alone clicking through to your website, you could be doing one (or more) of the following things wrong. No worries, though – I’ve also provided solutions to these common mistakes.

1. Generic subject line

If your newsletter subject line is a version of “ABC Company January 2015 Newsletter” that never changes, you are dooming your newsletter’s readership numbers before you even schedule the newsletter to go out. That subject line tells your readers absolutely nothing about what’s in your newsletter – why would they even bother opening it?

The fix: Entice your readers with a fascinating tidbit (like a mind-blowing statistic), a question, or a bold statement. Keep the focus on piquing your readers’ curiosity.

2. Not mobile friendly

Almost everyone I know – even my mom – reads their email on their mobile phone. While the email marketing platform you use for your newsletter automatically makes the email layout mobile-friendly, you need to make sure the content is also mobile-friendly.

The fix: Write short subject lines and headers, use bulleted lists, and focus on quality content over quantity.

3. Provides zero value

Far too many company newsletters are all about the company itself and not about the reader. It is great that you landed a big new account, hired more employees, and launched a new service, but “all-me-all-the-time” news will quickly lose your readers.

The fix: When you sit down to write your newsletter, think about sharing information that is super valuable to your reader, like “insider” tips or secrets. Share your knowledge!

4. Too much information

Newsletters don’t need five educational articles, two tips, an employee spotlight, a note about an upcoming event, and a preview of an ebook. It is just WAY too much for anyone to read!

The fix: Spread out your information over several months. Try including a preview of one blog post with a link to the full post on your site, and one or two other short tidbits of information.

5. Lack of personalization

Your audience is composed of different people with different challenges and needs. A corporate director of IT has different challenges than a small business owner, who has different challenges than a government agency. Personalizing a newsletter for each segment is a must.

The fix: Segment your email list, and start tweaking the information you send out to suit each audience.

6. Too frequent

The whole point of email marketing is to keep in touch with your audience, not pester them. It is definitely OK to send out two emails alerting them of a webinar – one announcement and one reminder – but not 3 reminders.

The fix: Be mindful of your audience’s time and patience level.

7. Recipients never signed up

I have been added to email marketing lists by companies I have never heard of, and it leaves a mighty bad taste in my mouth. I always wonder what else they do to cut corners.

The fix: Make sure your email opt-in/sign up is prominent on your website, and always ask before adding someone to your email marketing list.

What are some things you’ve done to boost your newsletter’s open rates? Share your tips below!

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