As 2015 came to a close, we put the final touches on the twenty-fourth issue of our company’s digital newsletter. In so doing, Lauren and Liam were both delighted to review the success of those marketing efforts. We seem to have cracked the code for how to create an e-newsletter that is fun to write, easy to produce and delivers a notable return on investment.
Our 2015 Newsletter by the Numbers
January 2015: 140 subscribers
December 2015: 146 subscribers
New subscribers: 18
Subscribers removed: 12*
* Subscribers who had not opened a newsletter in 12 months or more are manually removed so as not to be a bother to them.
January: 53.2% with 140 subscribers
February: 44.9% with 139 subscribers
March: 41.9% with 138 subscribers
April: 41.2% with 137 subscribers
May: 52.1% with 140 subscribers
June: 52.5% with 140 subscribers
July: 50.4% with 142 subscribers
August: 46.2% with 143 subscribers
September: 38.0% with 143 subscribers
October: 50.3% with 144 subscribers
November: 60.4% with 144 subscribers
December: 54.8% with 146 subscribers
In 2015, tracking new projects directly to our newsletter was tougher than in 2014. We did not have anyone report that they were contacting us on the back of our latest issue. Yes, we did receive a regular stream of compliments on the newsletter, and our overall business sales increased from 2014 to 2015. Yet, as with many marketing efforts, we could not draw a direct correlation between the newsletter and a particular sale.
The most consistent praise we hear about our newsletter is that people love to read about the work of our clients. They find that the stories behind their businesses and charities make for a compelling read. We hear that our subscribers feel connected to each other through our newsletter. (And that’s a compliment that we never get tired of hearing!)
That said, we did some work for a SAAS company out of New York on the back of blog posts and a video interview about our newsletter. While researching how to get a better return on newsletter efforts, the client discovered our materials in a search results listing. It was a smaller project, but it was fun and we’re still communicating with our new client about next steps.
A Template for Fun
When we say that producing our newsletter is fun, we mean that in a work-related way. No, it’s not a party, but just as an accountant enjoys working through a company’s financial records and a lawyer enjoys mulling over a proposed contract, we enjoy online marketing. We designed our newsletter template to be manageable and fun in the following ways:
- We highlight our clients and their great work, taking a few lines to mention our recent support of their efforts with the design of a new website or the creation of a digital newsletter. By making the newsletter about everyone except us, it makes it much easier to write on a month-in, month-out basis.
- We keep the newsletter deliberately focused and short. It makes for a quick and easy read for subscribers, and helps us avoid overburdening ourselves with lengthy writing tasks. The short, direct, three article layout keeps the writing time to a reasonable level.
- We throw in some silliness from time to time, keeping the messaging light and reflecting some of our personality. In a very real way, we allow who we are and what we stand for as a company to shine through the newsletter. Being genuine is always an enjoyable and healthy way to approach business.
- We work to keep the tone, messaging and format consistent. This works well both from a branding perspective and from a project management angle. We know what we want to say and how we want to say it. We follow that strategy every month. A clear, well thought-out strategy makes for easier implementation.
Looking Forward to Our Third Year
With January now halfway gone, we’ve already begun work on our first issue for 2016. If you’d like to see our newsletter in your email inbox, then be sure to sign up today!
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Improving Your Newsletter
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