|How many times to send out a newsletter?|
I'm travelling around quite a lot at the moment, using different airlines and ferry companies. And most of these guys sign you up for their newsletters.
And boy, do some of them mass mail you. Today alone I've received no less then 3 (three) different emails from Ryanair alone, including, bizarrly enough, one in Spanish (Yes, I am bilingual, but have never used their site to fly to Spain, or from Spain). All to the same email account, with the same subject, but different emails. It's as if three different departments within Ryanair decided to send out an email about the same subject.
So, assuming that you're a service provider website, how often would you send out a newsletter to your subscribers? Weekly? Monthly? Every time you have a significant update or new service? Or three times in one day, just to really annoy the punters? :)
Depends on the site really.
Personally I would try to distinguish between promotional material and news and try only to send out news (or at least mainly news). It is a "news"letter after all.
So how often does your community generate enough interesting items to warrant a newsletter?
For some, daily is perfectly acceptable, for others bi-monthly is the norm! :)
It also depends on what the users signed up for. If they signed up for an "occaisional mailing" then 3 a day is pushing it! ;)
We rarely send out a promotional newsletter -- maybe six times a year, but our news and information newsletter that focused on our industry goes out weekly.
I think MG is right, depends on the site. I try and send a newsletter out once a week. For my community, I think more would be overkill (as with most sites). There's usually something to put in the newsletter that falls into the "If you haven't visited the site lately, then you probably don't know about.....". Really, it's just a way to remind people about your site. At least for me that's the main function. I've had members tell me that the newsletter reminds them to check the site. I've seen a number of discussions that say the best time to send a newsletter is earlier in the week, but I've found for my site the best time is on Thursday or Friday. It helps bump weekend traffic.
I think the key thing is to set the expectation of the members. I.e., if your newsletter is mailed daily, then be sure they know up front lest they mistake you for a spammer.
If you think that high frequency is important, then offer a lighter version. I.e., if you have a daily mailer, offer a monthly as a separate subscription. Those people who don't want to be bombarded may sign up for the occasional mailing.