Sales teams spend a great deal of time pitching prospects, whether by email, phone, or in person. But they also know that when it comes to selling potential customers, they need to provide marketing collateral that helps with final decisions. Smart prospects will begin researching a company prior to a sales pitch meeting, then later follow up by reading every piece of content they can find before making a final decision.
One of the best ways to ensure those prospects are sold on your company is to create content that converts. Many businesses find the best way to do that is through the use of email messaging. If you create a solid, informational newsletter on a regular basis, you’ll have something on hand to send prospects while they’re making a decision. If they agree, you can even sign them up for future newsletters, which could convert them after the fact.
But it’s also important to think through your approach before you begin dropping information in customer inboxes. Before you get started designing your first newsletter, here are a few things to keep in mind.
Marketing today is all about the tools you use to support your efforts. There aremany email marketing solutionsavailable, so it can take some time for a business to find the one that meets its needs. Look at the newsletter templates that are available, as well as tools that ensure your newsletters land in the prospect’s inbox rather than the spam folder.
Your newslettershould be informationalrather than promotional. The content should be something that prospects and customers will look forward to receiving each month. If you’re an insurance agent, send tips on how to safeguard against accidents. If you’re a local clothing boutique, provide seasonal fashion tips or news on the latest fashions. You can include a couple of mentions of your services or a discount code for your products, but make sure the primary focus of your newsletter is to give customers information they can use.
In the days of print newsletters, publishers often felt the need to fill multiple pages with articles, newspaper style. That doesn’t translate to email newsletters, which customers often read on their phones. There is no hard and fast rule foremail newsletter length, but it should be something a recipient can easily read in just a few minutes. Informational newsletters should go further than a basic email message but not be quite as extensive as a blog post.
Brands must compete with all the other emails in a recipient’s inbox for attention. Unfortunately, they often fail at that. Experts say33 percent of recipientsdecide to open an email based solely on its subject line. Pay close attention to your target audience and learn what subject lines are most likely to jump out at them. Some solutions will even let you personalize subject lines, sending emails with one subject line to a specific part of your audience and an entirely different subject line to another segment.
Even the most informational newsletter won’t achieve its goals without acall to actionsomewhere in its messaging. Make sure your readers know what you’re inviting them to do, whether it’s to get more information by contacting you or signing up for a special offer. The more compelling your CTAs, the more likely they are to get results.
Each outreach effort is a learning experience for your sales team. Have processes in place totrack your activitiesso that you can later research which elements worked and which didn’t. This information will help you as you work to determine the best ways to reach your customers in the future. You may find, for instance, that a coupon code didn’t send customers to your website, but your newsletter was effective in getting leads to contact a sales rep, who then closed the deal.
Email newsletters are a useful supplement to your sales team’s efforts, but it’s important to provide content that engages your customers and prospects. If they like what they read, they’ll naturally gravitate toward your brand when making buying decisions.
Dan Steiner is a professional writer, author, and marketing influencer. He is an active mentor in the California startupcommunity,and has helped numerous brands grow over the years.Currentlyhe serves as CEO at Elite Legal Marketing, a law firm marketing agency. Dan's published work has been featured in dozens of media outlets, including Entrepreneur, Inc, HuffingtonPost, GoDaddy, among many others. When he’s not writing or speaking, you can find Dan at the gym, backpacking, or volunteering at his local animal shelter.