How to Write Top-Shelf Newsletters: 5 Incredible Tips

Business newsletters do an excellent job of keeping in touch with customers, shareholders, or staff. You can use them to inform your customers about offers, new products, events, and your business changes. What’s more, you can keep your staff and shareholders updated, informed, and motivated with your email newsletters.

Keeping apparent benefits aside, let’s look at the data:

  • NYT website visitors are two times more likely to turn into paid subscribers if they first opt into a newsletter. (See here)
  • Vox’s newsletter consumers stay 110 seconds on the website on average, while their Facebook visitors stay a mere 40 seconds. (See here)
  • Vanity Fair’s newsletter consumers consume two times more content compared to all other audience segments. (See here)

Data doesn’t lie. That means email newsletters are super effective to engage, nurture, and monetize your audience. Plus, such results are why businesses are opting for email newsletters more and more. And although images and layout are critical for newsletters, the written copy is the #1 factor deciding its success scale. This article will go over 5 practical tips to help you write newsletters that shatter the Earth.

Let’s get started:

  1. Decide Why You’re Sending the Newsletter and Who Your Audience Is

Is your newsletter aimed to persuade your prospects to buy? Are you aiming to build trust with them? Are you looking to keep your staff and shareholders motivated and informed? Or do you just want them to visit and read your best blog posts?

Sure, your newsletter can have diverse objectives, but not all at once. A newsletter striving to serve all audiences at the same time won’t satisfy any of the purposes. For instance: your customers won’t be interested in employee birthdays, job advancement opportunities, or company policy changes. Similarly, when you write for shareholders, you must write in a more formal language. 

So choose a specific audience and write precisely for them, or create a bunch of email newsletters, each catering to its purpose and recipients. Sure, your newsletter content can be either entertaining, educational, persuading, or sales-driven. But it must have a laser-focused purpose and a laser-focused audience. 

And an excellent way to know your audience is to use what you can find on the Internet, social analytics, and customer interactions to make recipient avatars / personas. Other insider platforms to understand your audience are Quora, Reddit, and other Internet forums. You’ll find the issues people are discussing or searching for. And once you understand their psyche, you can serve them content much better.

2. Make Your Newsletter Newsworthy

Do you ever remember devouring the ads in a magazine or newspaper? I certainly don’t. Sure, the ads will grab my attention from time to time, if it’s something I need. However, I tend to be more invested in the news and features. The same goes for everyone else. Nobody wants to read ads – they want the entertainment and / or knowledge within.

So ads are certainly missing a gap. And news stories can fill that gap with news stories, which gives the newsletter-writing copywriters a huge advantage. When you write a news story that interests someone, there opens some room for soft selling. Soft selling packs subtle influence, which people welcome more as opposed to aggressive sales ads.

News stories shouldn’t be sales-driven in the least. Similar to a press release, a newsletter article is supposed to have actual news. It must have facts, zero fluff, or promotional content and address 5 main points — who, what, where, when, and why. 

If you stick to these five, most readers won’t realize they’re being persuaded to buy. If your newsletter is about a newly-opened store, your prospects and customers are getting the facts. But when you talk about the advantages of stopping by the new store, you’re delivering subtle sales messages as well.

3. Come up With a Scroll-Stopping Headline

People get tons of newsletters and other emails every day. Thus, it’s critical to ensure your newsletter appeals to the reader right away. Else, it probably won’t get read. Your newsletter must scream ‘ATTENTION’ and not just “I’m equally important as others”. People almost always don’t read your emails later on. And chances are, if that keeps piling on, the recipient will delete it at some point. So offer a benefit to open it the moment they see it.

There’s a lot to writing fantastic headlines. Of them, it’s critical to incorporate a fact, a number, a question, strong adjectives, and urgency. Consumers are attracted to words like “new” and “now,” and adding power verbs muscles up your headlines even more. 

4. Avoid Making Your Articles Too Lengthy

Typical popular newspaper articles are less than 200 words on average. Which is a good rule of thumb. Unfortunately, writing lengthy articles are an often-made mistake with newsletter copywriters. If people aren’t reading more than 200 words about murder, chances are, they won’t read over 200 words regarding a new product or service.

Sure, there’s a time and place for longer articles, especially if you’re emailing your company staff or shareholders. In that case, strive to make your article as readable as possible. Break up the parts using subheadings, or package them into several bite-sized articles. Further, you can put some points into boxes beside the main article.

5. Embrace Variety

Your newsletter must spark interest. That way, your audience will look forward to it. Embrace creativity. Besides the news articles, throw in a funny cartoon or comic strip. Consider a quiz or competition. Arrange interviews with the CEO or a CMO. Keep a letters section and inspire your consumers to write you feedback. Further, you can incentivize them by offering a prize for the best letter.

Add some regular features too, such as, a news round-up, a note from the Chairman’s Office, or a customer case study. Frequent features offer newsletters consistency and help strengthen a brand.

Closing Thoughts

Don’t have a newsletter yet? Consider talking to a copywriter to help you make one. Your copywriter can build a plan, come up with a name, think up regular features, find images, and most importantly, write your newsletter stories. 

Already have a newsletter but can’t find time to write for them? Again, a copywriter is your answer. Copywriters are trained to write features, news stories, and interviews that jab attention and subtly persuade readers to do business with you.

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