Email newsletters are a great way to connect with potential customers. It’s not as easy as it seems to create a great newsletter that people are happy to find in their inbox, so it is worth taking the time to create something amazing. Before you embark on your own email marketing campaign, make sure you know what you’re walking into.

Programs like MailChimp have made formatting and sending email newsletters relatively simple. For next to no cost, a great looking HTML email can be delivered to your contacts. What’s the catch? You need to have a contact list and you need interesting, valuable content to fill the newsletter. Otherwise you’re at risk of just sending pretty pictures to your potential customers when you should be offering them information and insights.

Here are four myths that really need to be busted.

Myth 1. Newsletters are a quick and easy way to draw in customers

Sending a bad newsletter is worse than sending no newsletter at all. It takes a lot of time to research content, write articles and work out which ones your subscribers are interested in. It’s vital that you have a plan in place that outlines what stories your newsletters will cover, and a schedule for when they will be released. Taking the time to plan your email marketing campaign will save time in the long run.

Tacking on “newsletter production” to someone job role is a recipe for disaster. The first one or two editions might be great, but more often than not, ideas dry up and time for writing content is in short supply. This is one of the most common reasons we hear for people abandoning their regular newsletters: it just took too long.

Myth 2. Everyone will click and read your content

The next biggest complaint we hear around the value of newsletters is that people don’t open them. Even if you’ve put together great content in a user-friendly format, only a select number of people will open the email, and even less will click your links.

Open rates over time averaging 25 per cent are actually considered high, but many people are disappointed when only a quarter of subscribers actually open the email. When 25 per cent is a good result, it’s not surprising that a lot of email newsletters have an open rate that is far lower and you may need to adjust your expectations.

Myth 3. If subscribers are not opening every email, your campaign is a failure

It’s not as bad as it seems. It’s not always the same subscribers who are opening your emails. The more consistent you are with sending your emails (without overdoing it) the more chance you have of your content being seen.

The more your potential customers read, the more likely they will be to buy from you. Continually providing your subscribers with content that genuinely helps them builds goodwill, brand recognition, stamps your business as an authority in the market and helps keep customers warm.

Myth 4. One great email newsletter will drive results

This links into the previous myth – not everyone is reading all of your newsletters, you need to build up your total readership saturation over time.

Be consistent with your newsletter campaigns and your exposure will grow – as long as your content is relevant.

Newsletters form a great part of a content marketing strategy and can make a big difference to your overall marketing success. If you’re not sure how to write great articles, check out this post for some easy tips.

One more thing…

Before you start sending out email newsletters, make sure you know the spam laws that apply to your business.

Our free guide, What every business must know about the Spam Act, details what businesses need to do when sending out email newsletters to avoid breaking the law. Download your free copy today.

Guide to SPAM act