Newsletters: Best Practices for Schools & Districts
Our Newsletters feature is available in your admin site! Since we hope you'll be sending out tons of emails to your community, we thought we'd create this list of tips and best practices for sending great emails.
- Be mindful of anti-spam laws
- Know your audience
- Send or schedule thoughtfully
- Compose effective emails
- Need help uploading your lists?
Be mindful of anti-spam laws
Newsletters feature is designed to make your emails CAN-SPAM compliant! Key features include:
- Your physical mailing address has been added to the bottom of each newsletter you send.
- Newsletter recipients may opt out of receiving future email from you by using the unsubscribe link included in every message.
- Unsubscribes are automatically processed for you. Just like the teacher and class subscribe emails, each email is categorized so the recipient can choose which type(s) of email they want to receive.
You can also ensure compliance by following these guidelines:
- In the From Name field in the Manage Setup area, use your organization's name. Your recipients should know immediately who sent the email.
- Make sure your Subject lines are consistent with your newsletter's content and are not deceptive. (More subject line tips below.)
Know your audience
Make sure you get permission from your community to send them newsletters. Most schools collect email addresses at the beginning of the school year, but it's a good idea to review your lists regularly to make sure you're reaching the right people.
Never buy lists of email addresses from marketing companies. Sending newsletters to these lists can hurt your deliverability to everyone.
Send or schedule thoughtfully
As with most things, timing is everything! When sending or scheduling your newsletters, consider what day and time is most convenient for your recipients - maybe after dinnertime works best for working parents or perhaps the weekend is the best time for your message. You know your community best! With Newsletters, you can schedule your message to be sent, so queue up those messages when YOU have time.
Send newsletters regularly - for example, every Tuesday evening. This gets parents looking forward to your newsletters, and many people have found that this regularity improves their open rates.
Compose effective emails
First impressions are important, so consider your subject lines carefully. Generally speaking, the shorter the subject line, the higher the open rate! Some studies show that subject lines containing only 3 words have the highest open rates.
- DO: use subject lines to give a command, make an announcement, or ask a question.
- DON'T: to avoid having your newsletters tossed into the spam folder, avoid using emojis, buzzwords like "free!", and all-caps writing in your subject line.
Choose a layout that fits the message. For important or urgent notifications, use the basic layout without any images.
We recommend keeping your messages brief for your recipients; however, Newsletters does not limit the amount of text per email. If you have a lot to say, link back to your website for more details.
- DON'T: embed videos in your email.
- DO: include a link to the video instead.
Use just one call to action. Does your newsletter have one singular purpose, such as getting parents to buy tickets to the homecoming game? Then focus on just that, and include one link at the bottom to buy tickets, rather than several links to related pages peppered throughout the newsletter. This ensures that your readers will "keep their eyes on the prize"!