If we had to choose one corporate marketing tool that is constantly underestimated, and rarely used to its full advantage, it would undoubtedly be the newsletter. In today's landscape, companies pay careful attention to every last detail when it comes to social media, blogs, and websites, but tend to delegate newsletters to interns and junior employees.
This casual approach to the newsletter is unproductive for at least two reasons. The first is that the newsletter is a marketing tool which under the direct management and ownership of the company, and as such, should be considered a real asset. For example, social media platforms cannot be considered company assets, because they are controlled by other people. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and any other social media channel on which we advertise our hard work, could shut down overnight and disappear, leaving us with nothing. By contrast, a newsletter is a channel totally controlled by our company, in both form and content, and allows us to create a list of contacts that we already know are interested in our products or services.
The second reason is the direct relationship we have with our customers. The newsletter is too often seen as a marketing chore that we just have to get over and done with, when actually, by shifting our perspective just a little, it can become a really valuable tool, and should be curated accordingly, because the emails we send to our customers are a form of direct contact. There is no doubt that people who sign up to our newsletter are interested, and by writing to them in an effective way, we can be sure that they will read about us, listen to us, and follow us. No other channel provides this dynamic, not even social media: even if we pay for advertising, we do not know exactly who we will reach, whether they will be interested, or whether it will be the start of a long-term relationship. The newsletter, on the other hand, is an inexpensive channel that, if used properly, is perfect for creating lasting relationships that can evolve over time.
What’s more, research metrics show that the newsletter is also the channel that offers the highest return on investment. According to a 2014 study by McKinsey, every dollar spent on email marketing returns 40 times more than the return on investment achieved through the most common social media platforms, such as Instagram and Facebook.
With this data in mind, and the knowledge that it is such a powerful tool, it is clear that we need to prioritise investing resources in the creation, growth and curation of our company newsletter.