Give your e-newsletters a reason for living

13th August 2009 | Posted in Small business

So the received wisdom is that you need to keep in touch with your customers. If you’re sending out e-newsletter they should drop into mailboxes on a regular basis.

But my plea is that you only say something when you’ve got something to say. And that something has to be a something that your readers have a chance of caring about.

Here’s an example. Using events as a hook to hang some promotion is not a bad idea at all. High days and holidays, present for the teacher, back to school – even anniversaries of the customer’s first purchase – are all common themes. And they work particularly well if they include a special offer linked to the event. Last week I received a new one – send chocolates to celebrate exam success. That I liked, because even though it was too late for my son’s university results, it was a good idea.

On the other hand, also in the inbox was one of those “Hey, we’ve redesigned our web site – come and take a look”. Why would I? I don’t remember doing business with these people. I’m not sure I ever visited their old web site. Bottom line – what’s in it for me?

Same with news about office moves, new members of staff and indeed anything corporate. If I am simply a consumer of goods and not a shareholder, I just don’t care. And filling up my inbox with useless information is a very negative behaviour.

My advice then, as a newsletter recipient and writer, is – don’t say anything if you have nothing to say.

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