One of the main advantages of marketing automation is that it allows businesses to create user profiles and to distribute personalized content across its communication channels. In order to do this, however, some data is required. A newsletter subscription is a promising start to get the information required to create user profiles.
There is hardly a marketing instrument that has been this successful over the years as email marketing. This is so because its benefits appeal to users and businesses alike: Users receive news, offers and promotions delivered directly to their mailbox. Moreover, a newsletter tells businesses a lot about their readers as long as they use this valuable marketing tool the right way by tracking open rates and clicks on links. Based on this information, users are shown the content that they are likely to be interested in on a company's communication channels.
But how do you get users to sign up? A few things can be done to increase opt-in rates:
1. Awareness: Make people aware of your newsletter. There are many ways to do this. One common method is to place the registration link in the footer of a website. People are already conditioned to look for registration and contact forms here. Moreover, the registration link will be visible on every sub-site as well.
Another place for the registration link is the navigation menu. A box in the right frame of the website can be useful as well as it can already contain the subscription form. In the latter example, no additional web page for the subscription would be necessary. Furthermore, businesses should offer users the newsletter subscription whenever possible without being obtrusive (such as over-lays that constantly pop up), for example when users register for exclusive download content or during the check-out process of an online shop.
2. Simplicity: Awareness is definitely a part of simplicity. Still, there is more to it: people should be able to register in as few steps as possible and they should not have to give away a lot of personal information. Email address and name are enough to send out personalized newsletters. You get more information as soon as users start reacting to content in your newsletter.
3. Double opt-in: Be on the safe side. Regulations on newsletter subscription can differ across national borders. If you do not want to cause suspicion, choose double opt-in. A double opt-in simply contains a registration mail that includes a link that people have to click in order to verify their subscription. This verification will also increase the likelihood that the address users have entered is actually relevant.
4. Security: People care about their personal information, so assure them that you will not mess around with their data by making it available to third parties.
5. Value: Why should people subscribe to your newsletter? This has to be apparent, otherwise they will not subscribe. So whether it is promotions, exclusive download content or other things that may appeal to your customers, make sure to point out the benefits of a subscription!