Digital marketing 101: How to create a weekly EDM to keep audience engagement levels high

Before you ask, we’re not talking about electronic dance music. In digital marketing, you’ll probably hear people talk about sending out a weekly EDM, which stands for Email Direct Marketing. In other words, it’s a newsletter – a strong digital marketing tool for marketers to maintain engagement with their target consumers. Think about your Straits Times subscription and how someone always drops off a copy of the paper at your doorstep every day. EDMs – or newsletters – are something like that, except done via email.

Alright, so what goes into a weekly EDM?

We’re so glad you asked! An EDM is not something loosely put together – you can forget about high open rates if it was. It’s where you bring the most important features, benefits, and highlights to your subscriber base. But it doesn’t mean you should just chuck random bits of content on it and call it a digital marketing success.

A lot of thought goes into the copy, and in essence, a good EDM will contain the following:

1. Clear. Catchy. Your dream subject line!

The phrase “never judge a book by its cover” doesn’t apply here. People often skim the content of an email from its subject line first. Your EDM needs a subject line that’s clear about what it’s offering (an ebook, insider tips, downloadable templates) without being boring or bland. Instead of a subject line like, “Here are 5 useful tips on how to be a better boss,” try “We’ve got 5 epic tips to supercharging your leadership in the office today!”

2. Copy that’s not only engaging – but also actionable

Entertainment is not your only goal. It’s digital marketing – so enticing your audience to action is another huge part of peddling a weekly EDM to them. It could be to drive signups, get more leads converted, or to increase the traffic your blog gets. Inject more verbs into your CTAs like “download now” or “view deal”. Great digital marketing encourages action instead of passivity.

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3. Personalised emails are 5x more enticing to open

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to digital marketing, either! People are more likely to respond and act on your EDM if it’s personalised. And we don’t just mean being on a first name basis – it means knowing exactly what certain consumers are looking for and framing your email to suit those needs.

For example, consumer A may be looking for more information on online advertising while consumer B is actively looking for a way to start advertising his content online. If you can show that you’re paying attention (say goodbye to copy-pasting standard email greetings!), your audience will be more likely to act on your offers.

4. Always write in the second person

Pepper your EDM with more second person pronouns like you, your, you’re – and shift the focus away from your own brand and product for a second. Focus on your audience, the person reading your EDM, and make it seem less like you’re fishing for signups or sales. Show them how you can make a difference and improve their life. It might seem like a hindrance to converting leads, but people appreciate knowing how something can benefit them instead of simply getting benefits shoved in their face.

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5. Being relevant in digital marketing is, like, super cool

People don’t want to read content that doesn’t resonate with them. If they won’t read your content, they won’t act on it. For a Singaporean audience, references to things happening in America might fall flat – you might fare better talking about durian parties and Lazada sales more than what Trump’s been up to lately. When tackling digital marketing, keep your content relevant culturally and in regard to what your audience is looking for. Content people can’t relate to is useless, in the end.

Now you know what a good weekly EDM looks like, inside out. If you’re looking for more, check out HubSpot’s EDM lookbook on their favourite templates ever!

The next step is finding the right tool to distribute your newsletters with. Some options available include Litmus, MailChimp, and HubSpot, where you’re able to segment your emails according to the type of consumer you’re targeting. Segmentation is a huge thing to pay attention to, since it’s clear that not every subscriber has the same needs as the next.

So what are you waiting for? Spice things up and take your audience engagement (and digital marketing) to the next level with a well-written, well-designed weekly EDM. Keep things meaningful and relevant, and people will keep wanting more.

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Sophia Lee

I used to freelance exclusively for Glints - now I'm a content marketing intern working furiously in the backdrop. Talk to me about writing any time! (Or we could have a serious discussion about video games and e-sports... that's cool too.) Find me on Instagram (@pxtrx)!

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