5 things your customers will love about your newsletter

Feb 17, 2015

5 things your customers will love about your newsletter

Feb 17, 2015

Learn from the best: E-mail Alert Western Australia

In this blog article we discuss a best practice, the E-mail Alert of Western Australia, and the most important lessons learned form this best practice . Learn from your colleagues!

With an E-mail alert you as a Destination Marketing organization (DMO) can move potential tourists from their initial interest through to purchase and repeat purchase. Another goal is to maintain communication after the customer has gone home (to pass on their good feelings and information to friends and family, and to inspire the customer to undertake repeat visits). Western Australia uses well-developed E-mail alerts to communicate with their customers. What lessons can we learn from them?

#Lesson 1: Use a consistent format with a clear Call-To-Action

1.1. The E-mail alert of Western Australia starts with a clear tagline at the top “Experience extraordinary” . This already sets the mood. Besides that, there is also a clear statement of the purpose of the E-mail alert: “A monthly Guide to the best of Western Australia”. This statement confirms to the user what’s in it for them.

1.2. What is particularly good about this newsletter is that there is consistency as much as possible in the E-mail alert of Western Australia, regarding lay-out, frequency (once per month), and contents. The newsletter is also very recognizable, and in line with the organization’s identity. This is reflected in the use of logo, house style, and coloring.

1.3. To eventually encourage the reader to perform a desired action, as much interaction possibilities are used as possible in the newsletter (headlines, pictures, ‘read more’). The separate segments of the E-mail Alert all lead to a clear call to action and link to website.

1.4. Another example of why this is a good newsletter is that the sender (‘from’) details are easy to recognize for the receiver (in e-mail inbox ).

#Lesson 2: Design a lay-out and structure with a high level of usability

2.1. Concerning the lay-out, it is nice to see that the logo is separated from the headlines and text that follows. Only two font types are used, which adds to the consistency mentioned in lesson 1. Another way to create more consistency in the structure of your newsletter and to improve usability is to add a table of contents when necessary (in case of a long newsletter). For example you could introduce this with: ‘in this issue:…’.

2.2. Hyperlinks are clearly indicated and directly lead to the landing page of item (deep link), which helps to realize the purpose of the newsletter: to take action.

2.3. Adding to the usability of the newsletter is that it is easy to scan, with clear headings, and it is personalised (for example first sentence: Dear Mr Herald Holland, …).

2.4. There is sufficient white space used to make the newsletter more attractive and more easy to read. Sufficient space is used in between each sentence, and there is ‘breathing room’ at the top and bottom.

#Lesson 3: Customize the content of your newsletters

3.1. Customizing the content of your newsletter to your readers interests is one of the best ways to increase the effectiveness of your newsletters. Another great idea is to give readers the option to customize their e-mail alert.

#Lesson 4: Use a colophon

4.1. In order to briefly state some information about the publisher of the E-mail Alert a colophon can be implemented. The Western Australia E-mail Alert contains a colophon, which is placed in a logic position (bottom of newsletter). It includes a link to the website (about WA) and it also includes a possibility to unsubscribe. These things highly improve the user experience of the newsletter.

4.2. Integrated all other channels, by including links to your social media pages. Western Australia does this at the top of every newsletter.

#Lesson 5: Create great headlines and titles

5.1. The subject line of Western Australia`s newsletter is attractive and specific, and moreover, it is focused at the benefits that the newsletter contains for the reader. Keep in mind that the subject line should contain no more than 50 characters including spaces.

5.2. What is also great about the E-mail Alert of Western Australia is that headlines are short, catchy, and easy to read and to locate. They are also in line with the real content, and lead to the same heading on webpage once you click through, which avoids disappointment. White space is used to separate headlines from preceding text, and headlines are limited to two sizes (one for primary headlines, one for headlines of lesser importance).

5.3. Because the first sentences after each headline are read best, they should contain the most important message of the paragraph, which means that the content should be promotional and trigger the reader to click on the Call-To-Action. A great example from the Western Australia newsletter is that all communication is in line with the expectations of the reader: quick and to the point. It is important here to realize that newsletters are scanned, not read. Western Australia uses this principle and makes the content in its E-mail Arts so that it invites users to click, not to read everything.

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