Plan ahead to never miss an issue.
Face it. Your newsletter is not that important to your subscribers.
Yes, it’s important to have an email newsletter.
Yes, email has the highest ROI of marketing activities.
But if you think that your subscribers are waiting with bated breath for your next issue, well, I’ve got a bridge to sell you.
Do you think your readers will notice when you do not send a newsletter because you:
- went on business or vacation to Las Vegas?
- were overwhelmed by multiple deadlines?
- took care of a sick family member or pet?
Sorry, my friend. They were so busy running their own businesses (and lives) that your gap in newsletter publishing went completely unnoticed.
Do you wake up in the morning and think, “I haven’t heard from Janet Falk in the longest time. I better check out her newsletter.”?
Sadly, no one thinks that, not even my mother.
Does it matter whether a subscriber opens the newsletter first thing in the morning on Tuesday, or whenever your publication day is? No, only that it is opened. A gap will not be noticed.
Maybe the subscriber opens it while they catch their breath and check email between meetings in the course of a busy day or later in the week. Again, when someone is scrambling to keep up with their overflowing inbox, a gap will pass by.
Perhaps the subscriber is a friend who opens the email, just to boost your open rate, and immediately deletes it. (I admit I do this.) A newsletter gap will not register.
What if the subscriber has set a rule to file your newsletter in their Newsletter folder? This is probably Never-Never Land, where someday the subscriber will review their backlog. (Confession: my Newsletter folder currently has more than 12,000 emails with 709 unopened.) In this case, the subscriber will never perceive the gap.
In sum, it seems highly unlikely that a gap in newsletter publication will be noticed.
As important as open rates are, what’s more important is the next action the subscriber takes. Of course, your newsletter indicates they should:
- reply to the newsletter
- share the email
- click on the boldfaced link
- visit the website
- call the phone number provided
- make an appointment
- visit the office
You did include a call to action, right?
This Month’s Tip
Prepare an evergreen newsletter article. You have to engage in conversation to flesh out the details. To start the relationship with
An evergreen article is one that is always relevant and not tied to the calendar or a news event. It’s neither in step nor out of step. Knowing you have an article on the shelf will give you peace of mind when your plate is so full that your newsletter plops onto the floor.
Or, adjust the frequency of the newsletter if a missed issue occurs habitually, as suggested by Ann Handley, author on best practices in newsletter writing. Handley was pleasantly surprised to receive inquiries from subscribers when she recently skipped a newsletter, due to busy plans. She recommends don’t break the chain; but, when you do, explain it briefly and move on.
Mind the gap of your newsletter’s publication. (But you need not dwell on a missed issue.) You can avoid skipping issues by having evergreen content at the ready. Contact me at Janet@JanetLFalk.com, set an appointment here or call me at 212.677.5770. Together let’s brainstorm topics you will have in reserve so that you will not gape at the dreaded gap.
PS Thanks to Ilise Benun, Christina Hagopian and John Hinson for their insights and comments to my LinkedIn post on this topic. Like Handley, they advocate consistency to remain top of mind with subscribers.
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