Winning email newsletter focuses on just ‘Five Things’

Hunter Public Relations zeros in on the essentials to give readers a snapshot of social and online media—and grows its subscription rate by 10 percent monthly.

The best newsletters, email or print, tend to focus on doing a few essential things very, very well. “The 511,” a monthly e-newsletter from Hunter Public Relations, does exactly five things well. This one-page publication from the New York-based public relations agency offers a list of five bullet points on a single topic, from Pinterest to geosocial networking. The format is simple: “Five Things You Need to Know About …” It’s short, simple, and to the point, and it’s the winner in the Best Email Newsletter category in PR Daily’s Digital PR & Social Media Awards.

PR Daily’s 2012 Digital PR and Social Media Awards were presented by Synaptic Digital. Learn more about Synaptic Digital here (pdf).

What, for example, do you need to know about … Pinterest? “Visual content drives engagement” is point No. 1: “On Facebook, which is still the social network by which all others are measured, photos receive higher engagement rates than link, text, and video posts (eMarketer). On Pinterest, text-only posts are not an option, which is one of the reasons initial engagement on the site is so high.” Other entries include stats on Pinterest’s growing audience, and information about how brands like Whole Foods, Pillsbury, and Blockbuster are using Pinterest to connect with consumers. In case you were wondering about Google+, another issue of The 511 tells readers about the social networking site’s Brand Pages (currently in beta); Circles, which enable marketers to categorize consumers based on age, location, or product interest; and Hangouts, which allow live video chat. These represent an opportunity for marketers to hold live Q&A discussions between consumers and spokespeople. The open rate for “The 511” is 29 percent, more than three times the 9.4 percent average for marketing newsletters in 2011. Since its March 2011 launch, “The 511” has gone from bi-monthly to monthly distribution. The total number of new subscribers has risen by 80 percent, increasing at a rate of 10 percent after each new issue. Hear more about its success and measurement results directly from Michael Lamp of Hunter PR: Each issue features prominent sharing buttons for email, Facebook, and Twitter, as well as links to newsletter archives and links to each of Hunter’s social assets (Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Facebook, blog). Issues of “The 511” have included poll questions, YouTube videos, infographics, and PowerPoint presentations. A regular sidebar offers information on Hunter’s core agency competencies relating to social and digital media. With a simple, easy-to-peruse design that delivers compelling content for marketers, “The 511” stands out as an award winner as well as an e-newsletter to watch. Want to get recognized for your hard work? Find out about Ragan and PR Daily’s award programs here: http://www.prdaily.com/Main/RaganAwardsPrograms.aspx

Topics: PR

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