Email newsletters are a great way to stay in contact with your current customers while also providing new contacts and leads. They can help you establish credibility and offer insight into your particular field.
Done well, your contacts are likely to forward the information to their contacts and create leads for you organically. The problem is offering just the right amount of information at just the right interval.
In your email marketing strategy, how often should you send an email newsletter?
The answer to that question is going to be as unique as the service you provide to your clients. How often do your contacts like to hear from you? How timely is the information you are going to share? In some cases, weekly newsletters might be great. In other situations, monthly newsletters might be right.
Figuring out the right balance requires some experimenting. Here’s a simple 4-step process to find out what’s right for your business.
1. What do you think?
This is the best place to start. You have an idea of how often your contacts would want to hear from you. Start there. Weekly? Bi-weekly? Monthly? Pick out the the number times you think work best.
2. Test it
You’ve got your email list, and hopefully it’s segmented. Run an A/B test for several of intervals that are appropriate to your email marketing strategy. Make certain that regardless of the frequency, the content is similar for both intervals. You can randomize the segments, but try to keep things as consistent as possible. For one test, send the newsletter out on the same day at the same time of day as much as you can. To get reliable information, you’re going to need to go through the process several times.
3. Check the results
After a few rotations, look at the results. The first detail will be the number of people opening the email to begin with. It’s a good indication of which interval is more effective, but it doesn’t tell the whole story. This is why keeping the content consistent between intervals is helpful. You want to look at how many unique clicks the articles within the newsletter are getting. How often people look at the information you’re giving them will be a better indication of which email marketing interval will work better.
4. Retest if necessary
Beware of confirmation bias. If you thought bi-weekly was the right interval, look at the data as objectively as possible to see if that is supported. If you aren’t sure, run more tests. Look for other ways to segment your list to see if that will give you clearer results. Experiment with different days of the week or times of day.
Finding that the Goldilocks frequency (not too often, not too rare) requires trial and error. Daily newsletters probably aren’t really newsletters and semi-annual contact will cause you to lose touch. Email marketing is most effective to lists that are only a few months old. If you’re providing good content, your clients will appreciate you trying to give it in a frequency right for them.