The beauty about email newsletters is that due to their regularity in your subscribers' inbox, they lend themselves greatly to allowing you to build a good, sturdy and steady relationship with your subscriber.
When it all goes well, it's a beautiful thing - but unless you're committed to the process it can fall down.
This week I received 2 emails from companies who I signed up to recieve monthly newsletters from over 2 years ago. How many emails have I recieved from them in the past 2 years? From Company A - none at all and Company B - 2 in the first year and none in this past year.
And what did their opening sentences say? "It's been awhile since you last heard from us" or " Missed us?" - no - nothing at all about the absence of newsletters in my inbox from themselves...
The problem with this type of lack of re-introductions as such, is that most of the time you've forgotten that you signed up and so they appear to be unwanted and unrequested emails. So, if this situation happens to your newsletter, then you need to bite the bullet and 'fess up'. Additionally, if it has been longer than 6 months since you contacted them OR you have been collecting addresses via your subscription form on your website but never actually sent out a newsletter,it would be advisable to ask the subscriber to re-subscribe.
Of course avoiding the problem from happening in the first is the preferred option, and this can be easily achieved by planning a schedule in advance. When creating a newsletter schedule I find it easiest to work backwards so ask yourself the following questions:
1: What date/day of the month do I want to send out? Do you want to send every 3rd Tuesday of the month? When do your competitors end their newsletters out? If at all possible, try and avoid these times so you're not sharing the inbox with your competitors.
2: How long will it take to create the newsletter once I/my agency/my ESP has all the information? This will determine the start date for creating the newsletter. If you are doing it inhouse, don't forget you need to include time for testing and approval.
3: The above 2 questions will determine the 'due by date' for your newsletter content. If other people are providing all or some of it, then give yourself some room to breathe and ask them to deliver the content a couple of days (or more!) before the due by date.
4: Organise the content schedule at least 6 months in advance and remember to include relevant dates such as your Company events, Christmas, major Trade Shows etc in your schedule so you can incorporate these in your newsletter if relevent. For example you may want to do an interview of a presenter at one of your Company events or an Industry Tradeshow. Or if you're in retail then the holiday periods will all be relevant to your newsletter. Of course if you're about to release a product or service then this also needs to be planned into the schedule.
Also when organising your newsletter schedule, don't forget to involve other internal departments who send out marketing or sales information either by email or mail. You don't want your subscriber/client to be swamped by communications by your company all in the same week -try and space them out.
The main idea is to be as regular and as prepared as possible. Newsletters don't just happen overnight (unfortunately) - they need planning and committment ....but they're worth it!
Originally Posted: DMA Email Blog