A quick Google search for “newsletter template” will receive pages upon pages of company’s looking to sell you downloadable, semi-customizable newsletter templates. This search reveals the inherent problem with the traditional email newsletter template — it has been overused. It is time for marketers to say goodbye to the traditional email newsletter template in favor of a more modern (and appealing) option.
The Pain Paints Of A Newsletter Template
When used properly, a quarterly newsletter can be a great internal and external marketing tactic. However, when marketers solely rely on traditional newsletters, they will discover that their subscribers rapidly drop off and their audience tunes out. Below you will find a few of the pain points that a traditional email newsletter template generates.
Pain Point #1: Lengthy Email — Have you ever opened your email, given it a quick scroll, and simply said “no” due to its length? Chances are you flag these types of emails on a daily basis (and we wonder why our inbox regularly says 1,000+ unread emails). It is no secret that people are inundated with personal and business emails on a daily basis. In fact, the average person receives over 100 emails a day. The problem with a traditional newsletter template is that it lends itself to a lengthy email. People don’t want to read a long email that typically contains links to another article.
Solution To Pain Point #1: Formatting — To combat this pain point, you need to spend some time formatting your newsletter to ensure that it has valuable content. If people expect to glean valuable insights from your newsletter, regardless of whether they “click to read more,” then they are less likely to simply send your newsletter to the trash. You also need to ensure that your newsletter properly displays across devices; this means that it shouldn’t adjust to one long column that results in a never ending Instagram-style scroll that prompts people to simply swipe up, swipe down, and subsequently swipe to delete.
Pain Point # 2: Too Much Information — As noted above, newsletters need to have valuable content, however this doesn’t mean that you should throw in “everything including the kitchen sink.” All too often traditional email newsletter templates encourage marketers to provide too much information.
Solution To Pain Point #2: Identify The Needs Of Your Audience — Determining the right amount of information will depend entirely on the needs of your audience. To combat the second pain point you will need to spend some time building audience personas. Give your content a chance to shine by using a non-traditional newsletter that is customized to meet the needs of a smaller audience sector. By keeping things to the point and relevant, you can increase the likelihood that recipients will read and otherwise engage with your newsletter.
Pain Point #3: Easy To Unsubscribe — Traditional newsletter templates have a tendency to unintentionally encourage recipients to unsubscribe. It’s not the fault of your marketing team, it is the fault of the delivery mechanism.
Solution To Pain Point #3: Choose A Different Format — The beauty of digital marketing is that there are countless ways to connect with your intended audience. If your traditional newsletter template is resulting in a high number of people opting-out, then the solution is simple — you need to try something different. Whether you choose to deliver content via social media, traditional email marketing tactics, or want to offer your audience a chance to choose what content they view, the only way to make a newsletter work for you is to analyze the results. Open rates, conversion statistics, sharing, downloads, and direct feedback are just a few of the metrics that you should track to better create and deliver valuable content marketing messages.
Pain Point #4: Spam Filters — One of the biggest issues with a traditional email newsletter template is that it has the tendency to wind-up in the spam folder. The reason for this is often two-fold. 1) People intentionally send the newsletter to their spam folder because they are tried of receiving inconsistent updates from companies who are simply interested in meeting a certain number of customer touch points. 2) The format of the newsletter looks eerily similar to other spam emails, and so the recipient’s spam filter automatically sends it to the junk file.
Solution To Pain Point #4: Choose A Different Format — Like the solution to pain point number three, the best way to combat the spam filter dilemma is to try a different format. Whether you choose to format your email so that it has a built in responsive design, or prefer to use other email marketing tactics, you need to identify why your newsletter is being marked as spam, and immediately rectify the situation. Remember that if your emails are marked as spam, then you can quickly become blocked. With this in mind, you might want to run an A/B split test to determine if it is the actual content or the format that affects the final destination of the email. If it is the format, then the remedy is simple: you need to rebuild your newsletter from scratch. However, if it is the content, then you need to rethink your content marketing strategy so that you can produce valuable and audience-relevant content.
Pain Point #5: Too Much Online Marketing — We live in an age where marketers often think that “more is better.” In many cases, “less is more.” In other words, as our earlier reference to Google search results implied, traditional email newsletter templates encourage too much online marketing. If your newsletter is just another way for you to have a customer touch point, then you are misusing this potential valuable marketing tool.
Solution To Pain Point #5: Rethink Your Content Creation Strategy — Newsletters can be a valuable marketing tactic, if and only if they are used properly. In other words, the newsletter should not simply establish a touch point. Instead, it should be a way to update your customers based on their needs. Once again, in order to resolve this pain point, you must build audience personas that take into account the specific content needs of your audience. Do they want to receive company updates? Are they interested in product alerts? Do they want to receive reminders about content that was already published on your blog, website, or social media pages? By answering these types of questions you can more effectively create newsletter content that is wanted and valuable.
The Bottom Line: Choose A Better Digital Format
The moral of the story is clear, traditional email newsletter templates have a multitude of pain points that can be resolved by adopting new marketing tactics. By paying attention to the content that is delivered, as well as the chosen format, you can reverse the pain points of traditional newsletter templates by choosing to instead leverage the power of better email marketing tactics.