Importance of Newsletters For Your Business

“Sign up for our newsletter!” A phrase you hear quite often. But what are you signing up for? Depends on what site you are on and what that site may be offering to you. Have you ever wondered what exactly those businesses get from having a newsletter? Seriously. What’s in it for them?

The Post and Courier Newsletter Editor, Emily Daily, shares her insights and expertise in newsletters from her 15 years in media, marketing, and public relations.

 Leads to Clients 

Newsletters being sent to people that already have an established interest in the company or business. These leads come from website submissions, social media, and anytime a person reaches out to the company for more information. When a person signs up for a newsletter or offers their email address, this individual is considered a Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL) and is ready to learn more about your business. Now, you nurture your lead with follow up marketing emails, letting them know about special offers, information that only subscribers or MQLs would get to learn, and anything exciting that may be internally happening with your business.

“Not only is it important for marketing the business and sharing new product news or upcoming sales or events, but it’s also a way to connect with customers on a personal level. Many successful newsletters are written from a personal point-of-view, often from a business owner, CEO, or editor. This gives the readers a chance to feel like they have a true connection to the company.” 

– Newsletter Editor, Emily Daily 

Building Relationships

People want to feel like they are getting something from a newsletter. What information does your business offer that can be helpful to your target audience? What makes your business stand out? Offering knowledge and delivering it right to your lead’s inbox developing a personal connection that may otherwise have been lost. Newsletter Editor, Emily Daily, explains:

The advantage of a newsletter versus a typical marketing email is that companies can create an established group of readers who trust their brand and stay updated with their news on a consistent basis. Every time a reader opens a newsletter from that company, they know it won’t simply be a marketing push – it will have other content that interests them as well. Therefore, newsletters tend to have much higher open rates and click-through rates, especially when they’re sent out on a consistent basis.

If someone signs up to learn more from you, what will they be learning? Here are some options:

  • Awareness: New products or services? Perhaps a new team member! Let your audience know.
  • Expertise: What do you know that can help your audience? What resources do you offer? A guide? Article?
  • Promotion: What’s going on in your business? Having a sale? Special offer? Holidays are primetime to offer your loyal audience something special!
  • Coverage: Extra! Extra! Read all about it…in our newsletter! Compile a spot for readers, leads, clients to go to know about everything and anything that may apply to them. The Post and Courier often use this method with our niche newsletters – Breaking News, Sports, weather, climate change, food & dining, and so much more!  Instead of taking the time to search the website, we send you the links you want to know about it. A one-stop-shop of information!

Not Just Newsletters

A newsletter is not just an informative way to nurture leads and build client relationships. Newsletters are not only a great way to reach new audiences, but they are also a great way to advertise. Joining an established newsletter series can highly benefit your business. Each newsletter that The Post and Courier sends out has sponsorships. These are businesses advertising within a source that they know reaches their target audience and is a trustworthy, primetime, and amicable form of advertising.

“The benefits of being a sponsor for content like this are unique to broad appeal newsletters. The open rates will likely be higher percentages than general newsletters since the readers are specifically seeking out that content. This means they will also have higher trust in the content of the email. This makes your brand stand out even more.” – Marketing Coordinator, Michael Strong writing about Newsletter Sponsorships.

Adding newsletters and email marketing to your budget can significantly help you save in some areas while continuing to grow and nurture leads.


Better 4 Business: Facebook or Instagram

Social media has become a dominating platform with 3.2 billion users worldwide. Facebook and Instagram making up a large portion of that use, especially when it comes to business and social media marketing.

While the excitement of using social media to gain more business is intriguing more than ever, you may not need to utilize both social media platforms to see immense success.

The decision and comparison can be overwhelming. We have taken the top attributes of each and broken them down for you to decide which is Better 4 Your Business.

Facebook 4 Business

Facebook, being the matriarch of social media, has many attributes that it brings to the business table.

Industries like alcohol, Food & Beverage, sports teams, hotels, and non-profits being the breadwinner of engagement. So, businesses do well.

For starters, a wider audience. Facebook has 1.6 Billion users, while Instagram has about 112.5 million. This audience is heavily diverse but has an older audience. What those numbers tell us is that Facebook has more opportunity for more people to see your content, paid or organic.

What those numbers also tell us is that while there is a high potential for more people to see your content, they most likely will not see or engage with it. Facebook has a significantly low engagement rate of only 0.09%.

This is why targeting ads is so important. And Facebook does this factor in a great way.

The implementation of an interactive carousel ad. This ad format has shown great success for a B2B audience. This leads to retargeting.

Retargeting tracks when prospects visit your site and then display a relevant ad to that user when they are on the platform.

Using a look-a-like audience to target the ideal audience is also a feature that Facebook does well. You can specifically target individuals with a specific demographic, interest, etc. This helps to strategically pinpoint an audience rather than hoping your ad reaches who you want it to reach.

In addition, retargeting via Facebook not only gains a more specified audience but plays well in SEO tactics.

“Facebook retargeting, in cohesion with SEO tactics, places an undisputed level of efficiency. Rather than targeting a new demographic of customers, using the pixel you are targeting users who have shown the initial interest based on SEO.” Seo Marketer

Another point worth mentioning is that Facebook’s online shopping presence is top-notch. Facebook Marketplace is a mogul in social media shopping.

Outside of shopping, Facebook’s business pages are highly reputable. In fact, having a Facebook Business Page unlocks several benefits for your business in the long run.

Insert Instagram.

Instagram 4 Business

Instagram has captured social media like its iconic logo. So much so, that other social media platforms actually use its design as a model, Facebook included.

Instagram is the trendier of the comparative duo. The demographics reflect this. Instagram tends to attract the younger audience, millennials more specifically.

What is most intriguing about the fact that a young audience drives Instagram stats, is that users report that they follow at least one business religiously.

Another thing to note? One-third of Instagram users have made an online purchase within the Instagram app. Sixty-percent of users uses Instagram to seek out new products, or have discovered new products using the app. This is why the influencer industry is booming!

Perhaps the best part of advertising with Instagram is that about 72% of marketers are currently making use of it.
Instagram also shines in social media for the median 1.22 percent engagement rate it carries. The lowest engagement industry is retail which is .67 percent.

That’s nearly 7 times higher than Facebook’s median engagement rate. In fact, this is 5 times higher than the highest engaged industry on Facebook.

Now, to be fair, again – Instagram does have a significantly lower amount of users than Facebook.

One thing Instagram undoubtedly does well at is the Instagram shop capability. Similar to Facebook’s carousel feature of showcasing products or a list of services in a way that does not feel like you are being sold to, this does exactly that.

Instagram also uses the same targeting, retargeting, and look-a-like audience models as Facebook. Actually, Facebook acquired Instagram in 2012. So, while they are two different companies, the puls side is that they both use Facebook Business Manager to post ads.

Then, the most obvious difference between Facebook and Instagram is that Instagram is more visibly pleasing. For most ads that you are served within the app, you do not even realize that you are viewing an ad. The flawless advertising makes Instagram a successful platform in this sense.

Best 4 Business

So, who reigns champ? Let’s review.

Facebook has 1.6 billion users compared to Instagram’s 11.2 million users. However, Instagram’s median engagement rate is nearly 7 times higher than Facebook’s. While this may attribute to more users causing the engagement rate to water down, breaking down the engagement rate per industry returns the same results.

Instagram is also geared towards a younger audience, but an audience that yearns to shop. Facebook also has a great Facebook shopping capability, the site shows great plays in carousel advertisements.

Additionally, having a Facebook Business page may hold a greater weight than not having one. Facebook Business is a noteworthy complement to your website and business.

Also mentioned above the fact that Facebook owns Instagram. So, regardless of which you prefer, both have the same advertising tools out of Facebook Business Manager. You won’t be jipped of that aspect if you choose exclusively Instagram.

Honestly, the two things the decision boils down to are what you want your content to be and who your audience is. Are you looking for more pictures or videos? Younger or older audience? Broad or specific audience? Breaking those down will help you to decide which is better 4 your business.

Another truth?

Having one over another will not hurt your business. Having both definitely will not hurt your business. What will hurt your business is not accurately strategizing your content and advertising on these platforms.

What could be Better 4 Business is partnering with The Post and Courier.

4 Unique Hacks for Facebook Advertising

If you have any experience running multiple ads on Facebook or Instagram through business manager, you probably think the process is standard and straightforward. 

The truth is, it can be. You can duplicate your old ads and change up the creative or targeting slightly, and get a whole new audience for your advertisements. You can save tons of custom audiences in your ad account and reuse them for various ad campaigns. The process is quite easy to get a hang of.

But the tools that business manager provides you with can allow for some creative ways to market your business and find a valuable audience online.

I’ll run through some of the more unique and useful hacks for Facebook Advertising through business manager.

Unicorn Ad Targeting

This hack goes against conventional advertising wisdom, at first glance. But depending on your business, it could lead to stronger customer acquisition and retention. 

The idea of unicorn ad targeting is that you can combine unrelated interests to get such unique targeting that the customer can’t help but pay attention. Audiences have become very used to seeing advertisements that target one of their interests. But they aren’t used to seeing ads that target multiple of their unique interests.

For example, you can target someone who has an interest in boating and sunflowers. Your ad can sell them a boat flag that features a sunflower. The people who fall into this audience and see this ad will be very surprised to see this overlap and will think something like, “wow, this ad really was made for me.”

The goal here isn’t to shy away from the public’s aversion to data tracking. The goal is to lean into it so that the viewer stops in their tracks and strongly remembers your ad. You’re not hiding anything here, when it comes to customer targeting.

The reason why I said this goes against conventional wisdom, is because this might feel like a weaker use of your money. Why spend $50 to target such a small group of people? Surely your estimated reach numbers will be higher if you were to align related interests in your targeting. This is true, but through unicorn targeting, your ad will catch attention much better and customers will naturally remember you more.

Create a Web Traffic Bomb

Facebook ads can be used to send a rush of users to your product or web page. This is especially useful if your business benefits from being listed on any page that shows trending products, pages, or articles.

The idea here is that you can use business manager to serve ads to the widest and cheapest audience possible. This tends to be by using audience network as your placement, since this tends to be very cheap and reaches a large number of users. 

You can also expand your location targeting wider than you typically would want to. It doesn’t matter so much if the users end up purchasing your product or service. You just want the clicks.

Once this traffic bomb starts occurring on your page, aggregate or other “trending now” type of services or websites will lift you to the top and people will find you that way. This creates a stronger impression with the user than your original paid ad would have. They are being told by a trusted service that your business is valuable among their peers.

Utilize Messenger Ads

One of the more underutilized placements in business manager is Facebook Messenger ads. These ads appear like traditional ads in the users feed, but the clickthrough takes them into facebook direct messaging, rather than a landing page you provided.

These ads can create a conversational relationship between your business and your potential customers. And the approach you should take to make the best of these ads is to use them for customer segmentation.

You have the unique advantage through messenger of finding out more about your customer lead. You can make note of what the users actually says their interests or traits are. And you can ultimately send them into applicable funnels for further marketing.

But how should you converse with the user once you have permission to message them? One good way is to apply active listening. You can set up a default initial message, when they click through, that asks them if they are a novice or expert at your industry service or product. And then you can make note of their experience level in your reply.

You don’t actually have to come up with a new product to sell them based on their experience level, if you don’t already have one. But you can acknowledge their answer and present them the product in a way that addresses their experience level. 

As an example, lets figure you’re selling a standing desk product. When the customer clicks on your messenger ad, they get a message from you asking if they are a first-time standing desk user, or an experience user looking for a better desk. 

If they respond saying they are a new user, you can reply saying “our desk is great for new users and is easy to swap between standing and sitting, as you get used to standing at work!”

If the user is an experienced user, you can craft a response saying “our desk outperforms the competition by using advanced hydraulics to achieve a smooth and fast lift into standing mode!”

Both responses fluff up the value of your product, but don’t’ distinctly state that your product is either only for beginners or experts. You sell these audiences the same product, but you make them feel listened to and acknowledged. The path to conversion then becomes much easier for you.

Skip Straight to Remarketing Ads

This hack says that remarketing is so much more valuable than regular marketing that you should skip the first step entirely.

Traditionally, you would set up an ad to run on facebook networks and then capture the info of the people who interact with your ad and then remarket to them. You create a second impression on the user after they already have brand recognition with you. They are now much more likely to make a final purchase.

The truth is that remarketed ads are 10 times more effective than regular display ads. The click through rate for retargeted ads averages at 0.7% compared to the average of 0.07% for traditional ads.

If your business spends $100 of your marketing budget on targeted ads, but only $10 on remarketed ads after running your initial campaign, you’re doing it backwards. Even if you don’t skip out on the initial ad campaign, as I suggested in the header of this segment, you should at least spend the heavier portion of your budget on retargeting.

The cost per click for remarketed audiences is significantly lower and you’ll end up with more conversions, under the same ad budget.

Balancing targeted advertising in the age of digital privacy

When Apple announced it’s latest iPhone software operating system, iOS14, it went all in on privacy features. This is nothing new for the leading phone manufacturer, but Apple wants their customers to have greater control than ever over their information.

This is an admirable effort on Apple’s part, as businesses like Facebook and Google come under scrutiny for mismanaging user data. But how do the new features, which are already adopted by 25% of users, affect your ability to effectively market your business?

What has changed?
The new notification makes users more aware than ever of how their data is used across the internet, mostly for targeted advertising.

Normally, new features of a phone operating system wouldn’t mean much to businesses that aren’t involved in that ecosystem. But with Apple’s iOS14, which released on September 16, businesses that rely on targeted advertising and marketing are more affected than ever.

The new system will require apps to ask users to allow data to be tracked and saved to their unique online profile, most commonly used for targeted advertising.

Facebook went so far as to warn app developers that the new privacy changes will severely weaken its ability to track users and serve targeted ads. 

“Our ability to deliver targeted ads on iOS 14 will be limited…” Facebook said in a release. “As a result, some iOS 14 users may not see any ads from Audience Network, while others may still see ads from us, but they’ll be less relevant.”

Audience Network is Facebook’s system for utilizing the unique identifiers that phones create for their owners. They read that info and create a profile for ad targeting that can follow the user into other apps and services. This also helps Facebook build its audience data for paid ads in business manager, which has been a powerful tool for businesses to reach potential customers.

How immediate is the change?

The tracking features do still exist, as the operating system did not outright kill them. That unique identifier, called the IDFA (ID for advertisers) is still on a user’s iPhone. But the big change comes from iOS14 forcing apps to ask the user for permission to track. This weakens the potential effectiveness of the IDFA.

When given the choice, we can assume many users will refuse to allow apps to track their data. In 2020, the digital landscape is shaped by the ongoing struggle between privacy concerns of users, and the need for businesses to reach new audiences through targeted advertising.

So as more users come to adopt the OS and learn about the privacy features, the more people will inevitably opt out of data tracking within apps. Once an app is opened for the first time after the user updates their phone, they will see a pop-up that asks if they want to allow the app to save their data.

How should you adapt?

After Facebook put out its warning to developers, Apple decided to hold back some of the features until next year. The goal is to give app developers more time to adjust to the changes.

Users even have the ability to opt out of receiving targeted ads based on the profile stored on their phone.

It won’t be until 2021 that Apple forces all apps to warn users about the data tracking.

“We are committed to ensuring users can choose whether or not they allow an app to track them. To give developers time to make necessary changes, apps will be required to obtain permission to track users starting early next year,” reads Apple’s developer note.

So if your business provides an app to customers on Apple’s App Store, you do have additional time to comply with the changes and develop your app around the idea that users can opt out of providing data.

But even if you don’t have an app, this change still heavily affects your business’ ability to reach new customers that are potentially prime to spend money with you. Should Facebook abandon its utilization of the IDFA, one of the largest sources of user data will be dampened.

Since this is a war of sorts between user’s concerns and advertisers’ need for data, it is important to remain sympathetic to the users. 

In the end, you likely have a level of concern for your digital privacy as well. Try to think about the things that you wouldn’t want data trackers to know. You can then build your targeted marketing campaigns to not be blatantly directed at the user.

You can still utilize the audience databases that exist, but avoid looking like you’re specifically targeting a single action or interest. This will all help maintain good will among privacy-minded customers.

It might also be beneficial to broaden the audiences that you target. If your business sells to mountain bikers, for example, you can keep your audience size large by including all kinds of bikers in your targeting. If the mountain bikers start opting out of data tracking, that audience will shrink within the ad networks. And the more people feel like ads are being forced upon them via hyper-specific targeting, the less they will trust you.

If your business values a balanced approach to targeted advertising and marketing, contact The Post and Courier Advertising today.