Wednesday, May 15, 2013
Stick to a Simple Format. Choose a format that's easy to create and compose regularly. A standard newsletter contains around three short stories. Most people don't have the attention span for much more than that. Besides, you want to make the newsletter easy enough to allow you to meet your deadline each week/month.
Engage Readers with Interesting Stories. Your newsletter shouldn't just be about your newest menu items. Grab their attention with something they may want to share with friends or family. Think about stories you would enjoy reading and take inspiration from there. It could be a fun photo from the past or a mystery that customers have to solve each week. Be creative in getting them to open your email.
Keep it Conversational. E-newsletters should feel like a personal note from the pizzeria, so keep it casual and friendly when talking about news about the company and latest happenings. The more your customers feel like a friend, the more likely they will be to look forward to your emails.
For a bit more insight, I went to The Pizza Insider Blog Advisory Board and asked their opinions on the marketability of e-newsletters.
"E-newsletters are good because they’re a low cost way to maintain top-of-mind awareness and they can enhance the image that you care about your customers… and you’re not just trying to sell them something." --Jay Siff, Moving Targets
"E-newsletters are great. Just be sure you are always building your database." --Tom Feltenstein, Power Marketing Academy
"I think the e-letter is a mixed bag. The customer who will read them is already engaged with your business. The letter is like those things you get from relatives at Christmas; occasionally they are interesting, but let's face it, how many of us have the time or skill to write a compelling narrative?" --John Arena, Metro Pizza
"E-newsletters are great, if people sign up for them. As long as people aren't being spammed, I think it's great to provide some insight to those who want to know." --Jon Porter, Chicago Pizza Tours
"Multi-subject e-newsletters are not as effective as a simple email offer with a strong single call to action such as a limited-time offer, discount or bundle. Better to make the email simple and use your Facebook page as the announcement/social hub. Your busy customers will give you one fifth of a second to grab their attention… immediately communicate what’s in it for them.” --Kamron Karington, Repeat Returns
“Every time you remind someone you exist it's a good thing. Folks can always opt out if you're filling their inbox, but otherwise it's just another way to say ‘I'm still here!’” –Scott Wiener, Scott’s Pizza Tours
“Social Media is a must! E-newsletters should just be part of a campaign to get the pizzeria message out into the community. A pizzeria should be budgeting 3% of net sales for marketing of combined sorts similar to a chain. Make this effort a part of that budget.” –Mike Rasmussen, Rasmussen Tax Group
Are you sending out an e-newsletter to your customers? How do you keep it relevant and interesting? Let us know in the comments.
My goal at The Pizza Insider is to give you the inside scoop on the latest trends, marketing tactics and technology so that you're always one step ahead of the competition! I've been a part of the pizza industry since 2007, first as the editor-in-chief, and now as the editor-at-large at PMQ Pizza Magazine. My first pizza book, Pizza: A Slice of American History, was just released; find out more here.