What is an email newsletter?

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Helen Nuttall

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I'm all about helping online business owners and course creators overcome tech and copy overwhelm. 

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What is an email newsletter. Photo of a traditional envelope with a bow

Email newsletters can be such a powerful tool to leverage in your online business. I see this in many situations – with clients, discussing with fellow digital marketing experts and from my own experiences with my online businesses. Practically any online business can set up an email newsletter and reach their audience on their own terms, and not be controlled by outside influences like social media.

Email newsletters defined 

Campaignmonitor explains beautifully, in the simplest form, what email newsletters are: 

A newsletter is a periodically-sent email that informs your audience of the latest news, tips, or updates relating to your products or services.

I firmly believe that your email newsletter can be so much more than this, and can offer something that other businesses don’t.

So basically setting you apart from other businesses offering similar things.

Did you know that you can actually sell without icky selling in your email newsletter? You absolutely can!

In a nutshell, an email newsletter offers a way of consistently nurturing your audience so they are primed before you introduce your paid offers. They really are a no-brainer.

If there’s one thing I want you to do after reading this, it’s to set up your email newsletter – even if it feels overwhelming – it is totally worth it.

I have a guide that will help you navigate the first steps.

Download my free guide to email newsletters

Let’s dig in!

No more being held to ransom by the algorithms of social media

It will be no surprise to you when I tell you that email marketing is a highly effective way to ensure your business is as visible as possible. After all, many of you may have had the experience of social media changing its algorithm just as you are gaining traction and visibility. 

Or, like me, have your account frozen out, meaning you can’t access your audience. (Btw I sorted that eventually!) 

It’s no joke – especially when your business is your income. 

The beauty of your email list is that you own it. It is yours, and no social media platforms will cancel it at a moment’s notice. 

How do email newsletters help me increase my revenue? 

Litmus reported that the ROI of email marketing in 2022 is an impressive $36 for every $1 spent. 

But email marketing success as a strategy means building a strong, nurturing relationship with your subscribers over time. 

One of the best ways to do this is by regularly emailing your tribe via your email newsletter. 

What is the difference between an email newsletter and a sales email?

An email newsletter will be an email you send out regularly, letting your audience know about the latest content or how to work with you (more ideas below). A sales email is focused on promoting one product or service.

Email newsletters – what is their purpose? 

Email newsletters are a great way to connect with your audience because you can personalize what they receive, encourage them to visit more of your content, and increase their awareness of your expertise. 

Increase brand awareness

Photo of teddy bear with headphones on

Repetition is the key. Your email newsletter is a place to share values and mission. Every time you send out a newsletter, ensure you have a familiar format. This may take time to refine. When you first send it out, use your email stats to inform you of what content your subscribers are enjoying.

What are they clicking on? 

Have they replied and asked further questions? 

This could be: 

  • Your latest blog post, Youtube tutorial, or podcast 
  • A story or video behind the scenes of your business.
  • A feature on one of your clients or a successful student.  
  • The story of how you came into the business in your niche. 
  • Your latest service offers and why they are so helpful. 
  • A summary of the latest digital product in your online store. 

The more regularly you share who you are, your values, and what you do to help, the more people are likely to understand your business. They will also think of you as the go-to expert. 

Build your like, know and trust factor 

Facebook like icon made from a group of people

Email newsletters should be a regular part of your email marketing strategy because they are a perfect way to nurture your audience over time. People are very different, and will also take varying times to trust you enough to be in a position to purchase from you.

One person may start consuming your content and buy your course two weeks later, whereas another person may need two months or longer. This is called the buyer’s journey, and I will cover this more in another post. Debbie Spiegel’s story is particularly inspiring in this post. 

Your email newsletter provides a regular touchpoint that will help you stay top of mind when it comes to solving the problems in your niche.

Boost traffic to your website

If you are creating regular blog posts to boost your authority online, your email newsletter can be an additional way of getting more eyes on your content, wherever that lives. This could be your website or, for example, your podcast platform. 

Email newsletters can drive sales 

Believe it or not, email newsletters are great ways of sharing your latest offers. It can be a subtle way of building awareness of exactly what services you offer, particularly that you can link out to so that you always give your audience opportunities to work with you. Done in a non-salesy, helpful way, you can significantly boost your sales. 

Another example is if you share a case study – this is a detailed way of sharing the results you get for your clients. It’s also a very real context that people will understand. 

Top tip – make sure you provide a way for people to get in contact with you if they want the services you have described in the case study. 

So your email newsletter is providing the invisible bridge (as Amy Porterfield calls it) from them, not knowing they need your services to understand how you can help them. A CTA is an essential part of helping them to get in touch with them. 

Why are email newsletters important for your business? 

Reliability of email marketing 

As I quoted before, email marketing can bring in over 3600% return on investment, which is fantastic! Email newsletters are a huge part of this because people expect them to hit their inboxes regularly. 

Can build your credibility 

You can share many things to build your credibility in your niche. Here are some examples: 

  • Blog posts answering key questions 
  • Sharing case studies 
  • Sharing podcast interviews with other aligned experts in your niche or related niches 
  • Sharing success stories – students, client results, results, e.g., passive income, launch results. 

Email newsletters can be personalized

From the get-go, ask lots of questions, or in some newsletters, share short quizzes so that you can create lists of people interested in different areas of your expertise. Then, when you have the resources, you can create highly-targeted email newsletters for people with different interests. 

Bivek Minj, writing on Linkedin also mentions that email newsletters need to be carefully designed. He explains that 

…the key is that it should look like it comes from a helpful friend instead of a salesperson. BIVEK MINJ, LINKEDIN

Need help with writing your email newsletters? 

If there’s ONE thing that separates online business owners who implement successful email newsletters from the dreamers, it’s overcoming the tech and writing overwhelm. 💻✍️

It’s so confusing. And most online business owners get stuck trying to figure out these questions:

🤔 How often do you send out an email newsletter?

🤔 What days and times do you send out your email newsletters, so you don’t annoy your subscribers?

🤔 What days and times are best to send your email newsletter?

🤔 What do you write in your email newsletter when you’re not a professional writer?

🤔 How do you know which email service provider is best to use?

What if I could help you solve EVERY one of those problems in under an hour?

What if I could help you make FOUR key decisions about your email newsletter, so you have firm foundations in place going forward?

Introducing my free guide to email newsletters. 🤩👇🏼

It’s easy to use and comes with a free worksheet where you can record your decisions.

So where will you be in an hour’s time?

Showing up confidently and consistently via your email newsletter?

Nurturing your list without the overwhelm?

🤔 Or pushing the task of leveraging your email newsletter to the bottom of your to-do list for another week?

Get in on this now 👇🏼

Download my free guide to email newsletters

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