The newsletter is a key deliverable used to share the results of a CI programme. It is an efficient and organised way of sharing the most relevant and newest posts to a defined target audience. Newsletters are a practical way to share knowledge, opportunities, and trends detected during competitive intelligence. The sending of newsletters helps to improve decision-making, to promote a culture of innovation, and to strengthen the competitiveness of the company concerned. Finally, it is a precious tool for maximizing the advantages of Competitive Intelligence.
Sending out newsletters is a powerful way to share results of Competitive Intelligence to internal readers. However, to avoid losing reader engagement, it is important to not fall into the trap of frequently sending newsletters that would reveal themself as irrelevant. Over-soliciting readers could lead to a decrease in credibility or a high churn rate.
That’s why it is crucial to have well-thought-out optimization levers, necessary to maximize the impact of the newsletters.
Understand your readers and their needs
One of the first aspects to consider is understanding the needs and expectations of your readers. To guarantee the reader’s engagement and the newsletter’s relevance, it is important to ask them about different significant aspects as :
- The frequency (weekly, biweekly, monthly, etc.),
- The day and time
- The number of sections and articles,
- The topics covered,
- The preferred format.
This survey can take the form of a short questionnaire, accessible by a link in the latest newsletter. Thanks to the answers received, the analysts will be able to determine the newsletter’s objectives and to encourage the engagement of collaborators. However, it is essential to make sure that the expectations of the employees are clear and measurable for the team in charge of the newsletter’ diffusion. For example, it is not wise to commit to the sending of a daily newsletter if you can not guarantee the content nor the regularity.
Enriching the content
The newsletter is an excellent way to share complete posts and promote the circulation of the information within the company. However, adding elements of expertise to strengthen the content itself is significant. It can be done in the form of comments added by the analyst who selected the information, or by publishing an editorial synthesizing the key information, relevant to all recipients. It makes the readers inquiry and prompt them to deeper explore the newsletter. If several newsletters are sent, a distinct identity would permit avoiding confusion between each thematic. Therefore, the recipients won’t have the feeling of receiving the same thing various times. The addition of commentary and analysis of the raw information can help reminding that the newsletter is not automatic, consequently humanizing the diffusion process of the Competitive Intelligence results.
Personalize the deliverable
Bringing a visual identity to your newsletter is important. This unique identity will help to differentiate it from all other communications received by the recipients. A clear and coherent visual identity can strengthen the brand recognition as well as the engagement of the receiver. Also, it could make the newsletter more qualitative, upgrading the interest of the recipients for the proposed content.
Evaluating the efficiency of deliverables
Analyzing newsletters' performances is crucial for multiple reasons. First, it enables one to be aware of its efficiency, then helps to determine if the readers are involved, connected or even committed in the process. By the opening, the clicking and the churn rate, we can determine what is working well, and what needs to be improved. For example, if you have spotted that the opening rate is minor, it could be due to a lack of interest in the subject. Thus, by analyzing performances, it is possible to adjust the strategy, improving future results.
Furthermore, looking over the efficiency allows measuring the worth that the newsletter brings to the company. It is possible to monitor the conversions made by the clicks on the newsletter and to determine its return on investment.
Finally, analyzing performances can provide precious information about the audience. It allows to determine the subjects arousing the most interest, as well as the reading habits and type of content the most appreciated by the concerned audience. Then, it enables personalizing the newsletter’ strategy, to answer the needs of an audience, which can lead to an increasing commitment and a stronger fidelity.
The classic newsletter has a few innovative alternatives, giving an option to diffuse the information in a more interactive and engaging way :
- Dashboards : Dashboards are a visual and efficient way to present a lot of information. They facilitate the overview which helps making decisions and let the recipients be actors of their information retrieval.
- Podcasts : Podcasts can be a more playful and living way to present information. It permits an audio diffusion of the content, which can be more pleasant for some people who prefer listening to the information rather than reading it. Podcasts can include guests or interviews, adding another dimension to the valorization of the shared information.
- Alerts : They are ideal if you want to be quickly alerted of the urgent information which requires immediate attention. Alerts management permits to carry out more precise settings according to various trigger criteria, by choosing the frequency and the recipients. Alerts could be complementary to the newsletters, in particular to avoid missing important information between sendings.
- Connectors : Connectors allow incorporating competitive intelligence to the main collaborative tools and jobs on the market. Thus, it enables an easier diffusion of the competitive intelligence’ results, involving the whole of the directions from the organization.