How to Start an Email Marketing Newsletter

If a newsletter has been on your to-do list forever, now is the time to do it! We’re sharing our best practices for starting an email marketing newsletter.
email marketing newsletter
1 Apr 2020

How to Start an Email Marketing Newsletter

Like most Americans, your day-to-day routine probably looks a little different today than it did just four shorts weeks ago. As nearly every state has implemented stay-at-home orders in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, you may have some extra time on your hands.

Even if you were used to working from home, you’re now working in a completely different climate. Your clients are scared. They’re unsure of the future. And many of them aren’t interested in making any big moves with their Medicare coverage.

So what can you do to fill your time and help your clients? While you don’t need to put pressure on yourself to be productive right now, why not take this time to enhance your email marketing with a newsletter?

Newsletters are an excellent tool to keep your business top-of-mind for clients while providing them with helpful, entertaining content. But with many marketing ideas that sound good, the execution can be a little overwhelming. This month, we’re breaking down the first few steps to launching your own email newsletter.

Collect contact information

You can’t send an e-newsletter without recipients, so you’ll need a solid list of your clients’ email addresses to get started. Hopefully, you already have this information neatly tucked into your Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system. If you don’t, your first step should be to identify a system to manage your contacts.

Assuming you already have this information organized, you should check to make sure each email is valid and that you have permission to use it for marketing. This is one of the most important email marketing best practices. You can do this on your own or by using one of the many email marketing platforms available.

Pick an email marketing platform

You should strongly consider using an email marketing platform to send your newsletter. Yes, you can send out a newsletter from your own email account. But without the power of a distribution service, your email is likely to end up unopened in the spam folder. 

Email marketing platforms provide beautiful newsletter templates, so your newsletter will look like it was created by a professional graphic designer. These services also routinely scrub your email list for users who aren’t active—another email marketing best practice.

Almost all email marketing platforms charge on a sliding scale depending on how large your distribution list is, the level of service you require and how frequently you want to send communications. 

Here are a few newsletter platforms to consider:

Plan your newsletter content

Newsletter content may be the most challenging part of cultivating an e-newsletter. This is where your creativity comes into play. First, think about the goal of your newsletter. Do you want to simply stay in touch? Or inform your customers about new products and services? Do you want to entertain? Maybe you want to do a little of everything.

There’s no wrong answer. What you include in your newsletter is completely up to you. You know your customers and understand what they need, so determining what content they’ll like is your choice. And you’re not locked into your decision. After a few editions, you can always adjust based on feedback.

If you need a place to start, try writing a substantive article about a timely insurance issue that affects many or most of your clients. You could augment the newsletter with another article discussing a topic not directly related to insurance, but an issue your clients care about. For example, right now you might want to offer your take on social distancing and good hygiene.

Consider the length of your email marketing newsletter

With so much content available on the internet, there’s always a concern about user attention span. How many articles should you have in each issue? How long should those articles be? And how often should you send out your newsletter? These are all important questions.

Keeping your articles short and sweet is another email marketing best practice. Try not to have more than two to three articles per newsletter. The more articles you have, the less frequently you should publish.

Newsletters are a great marketing tool. They give your clients helpful information, keep your business top-of-mind and drive more sales to your business. So take advantage of this forced time at home, develop your newsletter and watch as the relationships you have with your clients grow.


image credit: shutterstock/Andrey_Popov