Branded content being sent straight to a captive audience… sound dreamy, right? Finding relevance in an era of information overload has lead to media publishers searching for new ways to connect with their audience. Maybe it’s better to look back and welcome to e-newsletter into your marketing toolkit.

Complementing an existing digital strategy with dedicated email marketing puts manageable and relevant content in front to readers on whichever device they choose. A major benefit of email marketing is the usable data available to your business. You can view how many people opened your email, from what device at what time, and the action they took in order to calculate an exact return on investment. Data from US markets suggest eDMs have ROI of around 3,800%. Yep.. you read that right.

We’ve seen big brands like The New York Times embrace this trend with over 50 unique newsletters available for readers to subscribe to dependent on their interests. Dividing their audience into segments allows the publishing giant the opportunity to deliver readers content based on their interests, cross-promotes their main site, and gives the reader a distinct reason to visit it. Since upping the number of unique eDMs, the New York Times has seen an increase of 14% in subscriber volume, with the gross open rate hovering around 70%, well above the gross open rate for Media and Publishing newsletters (21.99%). If done well, the medium gives publishers more control over what content is received by who and can make your consumer feel like it’s written just for them.

A key takeaway from The New York Times strategy is to ensure you are providing content of value. Whether it’s lead news stories, geographic-specific news or events, sports, art, entertainment, eDMs are effective because they are going straight towards a captive audience. Digital Producer at the NY Times, Nicole Breskin notes that cut through is vital. “Inbox clutter is something we’re sensitive to… because it is so saturated, it’s important we produce something of value”.

Reformation are an online clothing retailer who are doing a lot of things right, and their eDMs are no exception. Instead of sending constant promotions or push-to-purchase emails, Reformation have taken the opportunity to connect with their audience. They’ve set their product up for success with their customer through offering several personalised suggestions regarding their Mattie dress in a light-hearted and humorous tone. Delivering your audience relevant education and entertainment can build brand value and trust with your audience. If done correctly, eDMs have the opportunity to produce around $86 for every $1 spent.

According to Nielsen, one in five companies in the US report an ROI of more than $118. The starting point of a good eDM strategy should be relevant content. Reformation’s content has been curated to their audience’s interests and values, as seen by the plastic-free and signs off with a call to action via the ‘Free Shipping’ and #jointhereformation announcement. If your eDM is personalised for your consumer, it can have a positive impact on click-through rates (+14%) and conversion rates (+10%).

There is new life in email! Email stands up as one of the most effective ways to reach your audience and should be integrated as part of a larger marketing strategy. If you are looking to make a commitment to email marketing, give us a buzz. We can help plan your eDM marketing strategy in order to generate the best results for your brand.