- Content marketing expert Cat Johnson shared 15 proven strategies that can help flexible workspace operators create high performing newsletters.
- Email newsletters can be marketing machines because they’re an effective strategy to communicate directly with your target audience.
- Among the 15 newsletter must-haves are a consistent look-and-feel, frequency, and knowing your audience.
Content marketing expert, Cat Johnson, hosted a training session titled “Create a Newsletter Your Members Will Love”. During the hour-long virtual training, Johnson shared 15 proven strategies that can help flexible workspace operators create newsletters that will strengthen their brand, attract new members, and increase community engagement.
Johnson started off the session explaining why email is a powerful marketing tool. She argues that email newsletters have the potential to be marketing machines because they’re an effective strategy to communicate directly with your target audience.
Why email is powerful:
- It enables brands to have direct contact with their target market
- It implies a sense of trust; email is personal and when people subscribe to your newsletter it’s because they trust you or the brand you represent.
- It assumes value; those that subscribe to your newsletter trust that you will deliver them something valuable
- It provides brands with a regular channel for contact.
However, in order for newsletters to be effective and engaging, operators need to have a clear strategy behind them. They need to be a regular, constant resource that provides readers with valuable information.
Johnson notes that there are a lot of newsletters that are used to broadcast messages to the masses. While at a certain level this might seem ideal (it means that you have a lot of subscribers), in order for recipients to engage with your newsletter you need to get them to feel that your newsletter is speaking directly to them. You need to establish a sense of closeness.
“The more your newsletter feels like you’re speaking to one person rather than many, the more effective it will be.”
To achieve this, you need to create a tone for your newsletter that matches and reflects your brand and your community.
15 Strategies to Create Engaging Newsletters People Will Love
1. Know your audience
Before you start sending out any emails, you need to understand who your newsletter is for, what they want or need, how you can help them, and — more importantly — what engages them.
2. Be relevant
While newsletters can be a great tool to advertise your services and products, you can’t just use it for that. You need to share valuable information for your readers and coworking members. Consider sharing relevant news about your local community or projects/events that align with your brand and users. In other words, curate the information you share.
3. Take a service mindset
“Think of your newsletter as a resource for your community.” Provide links on productivity tips, share book recommendations or business resources that might be useful.
4. Create a consistent feel
Give your newsletter a name and stick to it, this can be especially valuable if you send different newsletters to your subscribers. Consider having a header graphic that you use consistently and, last but not least, use a consistent format in your newsletter. “People like to know what to expect.”
Regardless of how often you decide to send out your newsletter, the important thing is that you are consistent about it. If you’re going to send out a weekly newsletter, make sure you send it on the same day every week; if it’s going to be monthly, make sure it’s around the same date ranges.
6. Focus on the individual
Keep the focus on your audience, talk about why what you’re sharing is relevant and valuable to them. Pro tip: keep your tone human and real; don’t get lost on jargon or sales pitches.
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7. The content
“Always start with a personal opener,” Johnson recommends. Beyond that, you can include coworking events, recaps of previous events, news, and offers. Also consider sharing news about your extended community.
8. Fun + community in action
Use your newsletter to showcase your workplace and community. Include photos of members during events or activities, share stories about your members, funny quotes, or updates about your community.
9. Use it as a community building opportunity
“Use your newsletter to support and serve your members and extended community.” Use your newsletter to celebrate wins from your coworking members, to share member profiles, to share member announcements, and to share news/information about any local organizations that you’re aligned with.
10. Formatting your newsletter
There are various ways to format a newsletter; some opt for a simple design while others go for more visual ones. The important thing here is to know what you want to share before you choose a template. Other pro tips include: make sure your newsletter is spacious (leave some white space), embrace visual contrast, and present content in a way that it is easily scannable (short paragraphs). Also, keep in mind that a lot of people read their email on their phones, so make sure your newsletter design is mobile friendly.
11. Subject lines
Don’t forget them! Subject lines can go a long way in determining whether someone opens your newsletter or not. Try different things, using emojis or questions and whatever you do, make sure you use the preview text strategically (you should never leave it blank). One way to determine which subject lines work with your audience and which don’t is to regularly check your open rates.
12. Create a workflow
This goes back to the consistency and frequency. Pick a day and stick with it; pick a format and stick with it…this will make the creation process a lot easier. Depending on what you’re sharing and how often, consider having a document where you add ideas, sections, and news that you want to include in your next email.
13. Always have a clear call to action (CTA)
What do you want your audience to do after they open and read your newsletter? Make sure that your CTA is obvious (hit reply, take a tour, book a demo, check out the new features, etc.), and don’t be afraid to use buttons and colors to get it to stand out!
14. Don’t forget your analytics
An effective strategy is one that can be measured, otherwise, you will have no idea of the impact and reach of your newsletter. Johnson recommends regularly checking the open and click-through rate of newsletters, as well as monitoring how many people subscribe and unsubscribe.
All newsletters have a postscript, so make sure you use it. “People read the postscript,” Johnson says, and it can be a great way to reinforce your CTA or message.
Tips to Grow Your Coworking Newsletter List
- Give people a reason to subscribe (i.e. if you want weekly news delivered to your inbox, if you want to stay in the loop about our events, etc.)
- Make it easy for people to opt-in through your website (don’t be afraid to use popups).
- Include a link to your newsletter subscription page in your social profile bios.
- Talk it up…share how many people are subscribed.
- Don’t spam your audience, doing so will lead to many unsubscribers
- If you’re gathering people’s email information when they tour your coworking space, ask them if you can sign them up.
Cat Johnson’s next content marketing training focuses on how to create a content calendar. Sign up here.