I recently received an email inquiry about the benefits of staying in touch with clients with a newsletter. I am posting my response, as I thought the newsletter topic would be of interest to Toronto Marketing Blog readers:
I am trying to evaluate effective ways to keep in touch with my clients. How do you typically quantify the benefits of a newsletter? Is it even possible to do so? Would you measure number of hits, inquiries etc?
The email reports that companies like Constant Contact provide offer many indicators to measure the success of an email newsletter campaign e.g. number of people that open the message, number of times individual articles are clicked through, new subscribers, opt outs and forwards. In addition to the report you will find that a number of clients and qualified prospects will contact you immediately following the release of a newsletter. This will happen either because the newsletter prompts them to make an inquiry they were already planning to make or because the timing was right.
The cost for an email newsletter pales in comparison to the return but a printed newsletter will still be a better fit for certain industries or situations.
In addition to all the tangible benefits, there is research to indicate that simply sending out a newsletter can help to elevate brand awareness whether it is read or not. This presumes that the newsletter is well branded and offers content that the reader cares about. It would also presume that the newsletter distribution frequency is appropriate to that target group.
Truthfully, like all marketing initiatives, newsletters have tangible and intangible benefits. While the tangible benefits help to justify the decision to proceed with a newsletter, the value of the intangible benefits should not be underestimated.
It may be that a newsletter will help you to position your brand in a manner that aligns with your objectives but does not necessarily result in immediate action.
Photo credit (top): ewidem