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5 Steps For Building An Unquestionably Good Newsletter

When was the last time you read an entire newsletter from top to bottom? Think about what kept you interested. Was it attention-grabbing GIFs? An easy-read layout? Information that felt specifically tailored to you? The odds are, all of these elements had some bearing on why you stuck around and didn’t skip straight to your next email. 

Building a newsletter that people actually want to read is an art form. Anyone can put text in an email, but how you arrange that information is what equates to click-throughs and engagement, rather than swift unsubscribes. At Movio, we’ve worked hard to achieve above-benchmark success with our own marketing campaigns, and are continuously evolving to ensure we’re satisfying our ever-changing customer needs. 

In this blog post, we’ve put together five steps to newsletter success that, if followed, will help you grow a loyal and engaged subscriber list of your own. 

1. Make yourself recognisable

Your audience signed up to your newsletter to receive updates from you; now it’s your responsibility to make yourself stand out from a crowded inbox. Consider the following:

Newsletter name - Having an easily-recognisable and catchy name that represents what can be expected each week or month will keep you front-of-mind for inbox scrollers.
Visual theme - You should have a consistent color palette that reflects your brand throughout all communications. Consider the psychology of colors to make sure your featured colors are triggering the right emotive responses - and make sure they work together!
Tone of voice - All of your communications should have the same or a similar tone of voice. Your audience needs to be able to connect with your message, and they are much more likely to do this when they understand and trust the voice it’s coming from.

2. Use simple language and content

Treat your newsletter like a snapshot of the week’s activity. Newsletters are essentially a quick reference point for the latest updates, so don’t over-complicate it. “Less is more when it comes to both copy per item and number of items. Make the tough decision of what makes the cut,” recommends Gabriel Swartland, our Head of Client Services, EMEA. “I always advise my clients to feature no more than seven separate items in a single email newsletter - this proves to be the magic number.”

Gabriel also notes the importance of testing new approaches with movie imagery, rather than relying on the obvious option. “Poster artwork may feel like the right choice, but when most of your audience are looking at emails on a mobile phone, the detail and intricacy in a lot of campaign artwork is barely visible. A strong still from the film of a recognisable character or actor is often much more striking.”

3. Personalise, personalise, personalise!

Simply having a recipient’s first name pinned to the beginning of your email is no longer acceptable. In 2021, your subscribers are expecting content tailored to them, and they’ll quickly lose interest if they feel like they’re getting the same run-of-the-mill information you’re sending to everyone. Think about why each moviegoer has subscribed in the first place: was it for news updates, special promotions, or interesting content to read? From here, you can begin putting similar recipients into buckets to ensure they’re receiving what they want to receive.

Dynamic Content in Email allows you to get personal, withouting spending hours creating 50 of the same email to target specific segments within your subscriber list. This Movio Cinema feature uses a recipient’s history to determine which information to display to them; a quick and effective way to deliver relevant and interesting messages to everyone in your database. Your moviegoers will feel special when they receive it, and pleasantly surprised when they discover their equally movie-loving friend ends up with a different email perfect for them, too. To increase your personalised emails even more, we now offer Dynamic Subject Lines

Another element to consider is how exactly your audience is viewing your message. 55% of emails opened are done so on a mobile device - so always consider mobile optimisation when building your newsletter, for those readers on-the-go.

4. Treat it as a highlight reel

Don’t feel like you need to cram every single thing you can think of into the newsletter. The more you can simplify a handful of key messages, the more engagement you’ll enjoy. In our monthly newsletter, we keep things simple: one key insight, three or four of our latest articles, and our most successful PR pieces. Your newsletter is the perfect place to inform your audience of key happenings you don’t want them to miss - without taking up too much of their day.

5. Provide opportunities for further reading

As we mentioned before, a newsletter should be a snapshot of your week or month - but that doesn’t mean you have to stop the bus as soon as they reach the end of the email. Use the channel as an opportunity to direct your audience to more longform content such as a blog post you want them to see. By adding ‘read more’ links to satisfy any readers looking to deep dive, you’re transforming your newsletter into a portal for deeper engagement.  

In summary, a newsletter is the perfect opportunity to keep your customer engaged with your brand on a regular basis. At Movio, we challenge ourselves each month to keep the content as simple as possible, whilst nailing all of the key points we want to share. Have a play around with your current newsletter layout, discover how Dynamic Content can streamline a more successful process for your marketing team, and watch your engagement grow.

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