So you followed our advice and created a newsletter to get your Shopify customers to convert. That’s great news! It’s one of the best marketing channels for creating a special bond with your audience and offering them real value. The bad news is that they could unsubscribe from your newsletter at any time if you don’t give them a good reason to keep reading. Crazy, I know. Luckily, you don’t need to spend your whole life dreaming up newsletter ideas. There are plenty of ways to use your newsletter as an effective engine for e-commerce marketing that can be easily adapted to serve whatever your Shopify store sells.
Read on to find the conversion-driving hacks and killer content ideas you need to take your newsletter from yawn-inducing spam to a forward-worthy read.
1. Let your customers in on secret deals
The best kind of marketing newsletters make your customers feel like they’re part of a special club or secret society. Think of your audience as The Order of Awesome People Who Want to Buy Your Stuff. To make them feel like VIPs, use your newsletter to provide tangible value they can’t get anywhere else. That means dangling special deals, early or exclusive access to products, or even the chance to communicate with you directly.
To really make the newsletter feel like a can’t-miss item every time it hits your audience’s inbox, show them that they’re getting extra deals above and beyond what everyone else is getting. If you’re planning a sale already, let your newsletter readers know about it first, and consider adding a special subscriber-only discount (easily implemented with a tool like Pathfinder). The same goes for new product launches: let your newsletter subscribers see it first. The knowledge that they’re getting an even better deal and greater access than everyone else will keep them coming back for more.
2. Be authentic to build your brand
Nobody loves a soulless, faceless corporation. Conversely, people do like buying from someone they feel they know and trust — especially on small stores powered by Shopify. Create a personal connection with your customers by telling them about who you are and why you do what you do.
This can work especially well when you can tie authentic storytelling back to a specific product: do you sell it for a particularly meaningful reason? Explain it. Is there a fun story about how a product came to life? Walk your audience through it. Are there any unsung heroes putting in work behind the scenes? Introduce them to your audience and sing their praises.
You don’t have to bare your soul if you’re not ready to, and don’t feel obligated to turn your newsletter into a blog. But any opportunity to provide your Shopify newsletter readers with compelling information about who you are and why you do what you do is an opportunity to fortify bonds that can lead to further conversions and sales.
3. Cue the visuals
When it comes to what you sell and what you talk about in your newsletters, seeing is believing— and that’s especially true for video.
While you won’t want to ditch words entirely, giving your newsletter audience a break from heavy reading every now and then. I’ll spare you the cliche about the impact of an image over words, but photos of your products are a must. Not only does it show off what you’re talking about, adding some visual stimuli can help break the writing in your newsletter down to more bite-sized chunks.
What’s even better than photos in a newsletter? A bunch of moving pictures with audio (what most people call “video”). Because watching content is a more passive way to process information than reading, even just filming a quick stand-up video lets you share information with your audience while demanding less of their effort and attention.
If you’re feeling more creative, linking to videos can be a great storytelling medium. As just one example, use it to give your newsletter audience a behind-the-scenes look at your process. Even if a peek behind the curtain to show off what you sell isn’t all that sexy, something like a timelapse can convince your audience that you put in the work and are worth supporting.
4. Flex Your Knowledge
If you’re passionate enough about something that it’s inspired you to open a Shopify store, there’s a pretty good chance you’re something of an expert in that space. Don’t hoard that wisdom for yourself: spread the knowledge! Your newsletter readers are probably excited about your product category and would love to learn more about it. Are there any “trade secrets” you can share? Any cool or useful ways your shoppers can get the most out of your products?
Educating your audience positions you as a trusted expert who can provide value for customers even before dangling a product in front of them. If you mix this sort of content into your newsletter rotation, your regular readers can feel like they’re more empowered to make a good decision— and they’ll see you as a reliable source worth buying from.
5. Use That User Generated Content
In our last post, we talked about how reviews offer a critical form of social proof. It also turns out that sort of enthusiastic feedback from your customers is great newsletter fodder too. Establish a line of communication with your audience by sending an email to let them know you welcome feedback, and especially photos or videos of them showing off your product. Make it even more enticing by running a giveaway that encourages especially enthusiastic and creative submissions.
Once you’ve collected some quality content, share what you get with your newsletter audience so they can see real people essentially endorsing what you sell. Showing that you have a strong relationship with some enthusiastic customers who can’t help but show off how much they love your stuff will pay incredible ecommerce dividends.
If you liked these tips and wish you could have some help and inspiration every time you write a newsletter - you can! 🎉 Actually, even more than that. Imagine this: You have a quick conversation with Pathfinder via chat. Then, in just 1 click, the logic is set up for you and you get an email template that works best for your goals.
On top of that, the email template includes writing tips & ideas to make it even easier for you to come up with something that excites your subscribers. You’ll be done with your newsletter in no time.