Email newsletters are in the spotlight right now… and for good reason.
They’re the protagonists in the world of marketing and because of it—everybody is looking. Small teams to big teams are figuring out how to create a newsletter their customers would care about and how they’re going to manage to put it together each day, week, or month.
Larger teams have the resources to hand this duty off to a dedicated team member, but what about the smaller ones?
Add a newsletter to your blog post schedule, your social media calendar, and all of the other content your business needs to create and you’re probably thinking, “Howwww….?”
At DigitalMarketer, we know this feeling firsthand. We have 2 weekly newsletters called DM Insider and This Week in Lab (TWIL) and pretty soon we realized this is a lot of work. Coming up with topics to talk about, creating the content, and sourcing the blog articles we wanted to promote in that week’s newsletter started to become a huge black hole of time and energy.
To make sure we were being efficient and not overwhelming our team, we figured out what we could do to get that newsletter PUBLISHED every week, and we’re going to share these lessons with you now…
Here are 3 tips for writing a newsletter with a small team.
#1: Choose the Template & Content
The first step in your newsletter is to figure out what your newsletter looks like and what goes inside of it. This is just as much for your subscribers as it is for you and your team. Think of your favorite newsletters—they don’t get delivered 1 week as a just-text email and the next broken up into sections with a ton of images and outbound links. You want your subscribers to know what they can expect from your newsletter.
And this works really well for making the newsletter process easier for you and your team.
Having a set template means that you know exactly what content you need to create, organize, and get ready for each newsletter. For example, in our newsletter, we have a section called the Inside Five, where we highlight recently published marketing articles that we really liked. This is a mix of our own articles and articles published on reputable websites.
When we set an article live on DigitalMarketer.com, we can highlight that content in our editorial spreadsheet so that whoever writes the newsletter knows that we’ll link to this new article in the Inside Five section of our next newsletter.
Having a template will make publishing a newsletter so much easier. Every week you’ll be dropping the relevant content into each block of your newsletter so it’s a faster process than starting from scratch.
#2: Automate Everything Possible
You were probably expecting us to say something like this. Marketers loveee automation—with good reason. It can make a small team create a newsletter that’s better than one written by a company with a larger team. Your subscribers will be dazzled by your kick-ass content and feel like they’re reading a newsletter that took a few hours to pull together.
In some cases—the automation might be even better than if your team had curated it. Using a tool like rasa.io, you can automate the content curation of your newsletter by linking your website and RSS feeds so your newsletter automatically fills in your latest content.
They’ll pull in the images, the meta description, and the link so you don’t have to do anything to curate your newsletter.
To take your newsletter to the next level, you can offer content personalization based on how a subscriber is interacting with your first several newsletters. For example, if you have a weekly newsletter with new recipes, based on what recipes a subscriber clicks on to read more about you can keep showing them more of those articles with automation.
Let’s say a subscriber keeps clicking on your vegan recipes and never clicks on meat-related recipes. The rasa.io platform will start to show them only the vegan recipes, creating a personalized experience for the subscriber that makes them feel like your newsletter just *gets them.*
The more you can automate with your newsletter (while still maintaining high-quality content) the easier it’s going to be to send out an email with a small team.
#3: Nail Down Your Curation, Editing & Sending Process
Lastly, making sure that the newsletter gets out of the virtual door and into your subscriber’s mailboxes requires a schedule. You want to know who’s going to create it, who’s going to edit it and have the final word on content and copy, and who’s going to hit the “Send” button.
Getting this process down pat is essential to making sure your newsletter actually happens. Your subscribers need consistency from you to get over the Know, Like, and Trust factor of choosing to buy from you and to maintain their relationship with you post-purchase.
For example, here’s what the process looks like for sending out 1 of our weekly email newsletters:
Since this email isn’t able to be automated, we have to be super specific about who is doing what at each step of the process and what day everything needs to be completed by. This makes sure we’re right on schedule for that newsletter to go live on Tuesdays.
If you want to avoid a complicated scheduling process like this, again you can use a newsletter tool like rasa.io to automate a huge portion of the process that you see above.
Just because you have a small team, doesn’t mean you can’t write a next-level email newsletter that makes your subscribers excited to get that *ding* from their inbox. It just means that you’re sticking to a template, automating everything possible, and nailing down your scheduling process so your subscribers know that you’re coming through on your promises.
So get your team together and figure out how you’re going to create your own newsletter, and if using a newsletter tool will be able to help you make it that much better for your subscribers—and easier for your team.