Welcoming Emails for new Newsletter Readers

A simple “welcome” or “thanks” still seems to be something that remains difficult for some advertisers to say. Email marketers are also not immune to falling into the same old way of thinking either: sales, sales, sales. Sure, the sale of your products is one of your main goals. But new newsletter subscribers are often not quite ready for making purchases. Aspects such as the researching of products and comparing offers are frequently underestimated or neglected. A well written welcoming email gently brings your own brand closer to the reader. If the prospective buyer then decides on making a purchase, this form of brand loyalty may prove to be decisive.

Many marketers capitalise on the curiosity of new readers by sending a welcoming email following the double opt-in. After this, the new subscriber usually moves on to the general communication to receive the regular newsletter. But something better is possible. With a cleverly conceived welcoming series it is possible to nurture stronger customer loyalty. In this article we have put together several tips and welcoming mailing examples that will show you how starting a multistep series can pay dividends.


Develop a strategy

Be reassured: a welcoming series is not rocket science. A good way to begin is by taking a look at the proverbial big picture. Obtain a bit of inspiration from your competitors and subscribe to the newsletters of the brands that you find communicate well.

Welcoming emails achieve high opening rates. These emails set the tone and enhance the expectations of newly registered recipients. Opening rates average between 50% and 80%. This is because new newsletter readers are particularly interested in a brand immediately after registration. This article from the MarketingSherpa Blog First Impressions: How to earn your place in customers’ inboxes also describes how useful a welcoming email series is.


Keep what is promised

Make sure that you keep your promises. If a voucher, eBook or other incentive was offered, this should be included in the first welcoming email. The same applies to the details regarding dispatch frequency as well as to the topics to be included in the newsletters.

Note: if offering an eBook or whitepaper for download, you should ensure that your readers are aware that they are also registering for the newsletter. The confirmation or double opt-in email is solely intended to confirm the newsletter registration. It should not contain any advertising. Only mention the giveaway that was promised in the subsequent welcoming email.


When should I dispatch a welcoming email?

Even today, some advertising companies still send out their welcoming emails in a bulk dispatch. This means that some new subscribers will be required to wait for several days before receiving their welcoming email. Bear in mind that the moment when a prospective customer subscribes to your newsletter, his or her interest in your brand and products is very high. For this reason, it is important to send the welcoming email shortly after successful registration – no matter if this was done at three in the morning or at lunchtime.

Diverse email software providers have identified that a dispatch can result in an average of 13% more revenue, which is also mentioned in the MarketingSherpa article: Email Marketing How-to: what to do once they’ve subscribed. Furthermore, the first two months have become known and are regarded as the welcome period. After these initial two months, the reader should move on to the general communication – in other words the newsletter. Satisfaction surveys or anniversary emails may also be sent occasionally. The following table has been prepared to illustrate what a possible welcoming series could look like for an e-commerce provider:

Tag Email Content
1 , shortly after successful registration. Thank you and welcome Restate and reinforce expectations; what are the subjects, benefits and frequency of the newsletter; perhaps link to the last newsletter. Request that the recipient adds the sender to his or her address book
4 New products What’s going to be available in the shop soon.
7 Website tour Help getting started shopping: what’s purchased most, how do the website features work, are there any watch or reminder lists available.
14 Contact – social media, community Besides email, present the other channels on which one is also active: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or one’s own community.
21 Build trust Share testimonials, customer opinions and highlight any store ratings and any shop seals that exist.
28 User account and profile administration Show why it is good to provide all information for the user account.
183 Satisfaction survey Actively ask whether the recipient is happy with the service and if he or she likes the newsletter.
366 Anniversary of registration Thank the subscriber for his or her loyalty.

Also consult your customer lifecycle to understand your subscribers. Usually, customers traverse several phases:

  • Prospective
  • New
  • Active
  • Inactive

To illustrate this, our in-house email marketing evangelist and blogger René Kulka has visualised a classic customer lifecycle. New subscribers move through the prospective and new customer phases. During these phases it is particularly important to bring the brand and products closer to the customer.

Identifying suitable subjects for the welcoming emails

Our experience has shown: content marketing is also a relevant topic in the area of welcoming series. Recipients regard emails that don’t simply promote the products but also convey know-how much better. This is how you can build trust:

  1. If you have made a promise such as for a voucher, eBook or other incentive, the information on how to obtain the giveaway should be included in the first welcoming email.
  2. Let the reader know again what they have to expect with the newsletter: exclusive information, pre-sales, special offers, etc.
  3. Mention once more how often the newsletter will be sent.
  4. Refer to the preference centre where things like dispatch times, interests, etc. can be changed.
  5. Present your social media profiles such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
  6. Outline the benefits of your website: how does the search work? Does your website have any special features or functions that your competitors don’t have?


Marketing Automation − How do I implement a welcoming series?

Writing a first welcoming email is a step in the right direction. The design and content is ready and now comes the question of how the new readers are to receive the mailing. With tools such as Marketing Automation, contemporary email marketing providers provide you with the possibility of setting up entire series. For example, our optivo® broadmail email marketing software also allows you to set up series. It is possible for the following elements to be taken into account:

  • Recipient list
  • The trigger
  • Dispatch time
  • Target groups
  • Several emails
  • Additional criteria

What a marketing automation schema might actually look like is shown here via a travel portal example called “sonnenhungrig”.

 


Summary

The figures prove it: new newsletter readers are especially interested in a brand directly after registration. This represents a perfect time to introduce yourself to the reader. And just like in real life, you need to invest a little effort to make a lasting great first impression.

A single welcome email is a beginning. Advanced marketers send out a welcoming series during the first two months of the “getting to know you” phase, which involves asking about interests and conveying interesting know-how.

Just get going: should you wish to commence your welcoming series, do it by taking small steps. It needn’t be perfect right away. But it is important that you welcome your new subscribers.