How often and when to send out an e-mail newsletter

TechnologyAdvice conducted a survey and found the #1 reason people unsubscribe from email newsletters is because they receive them too often.

Where does that leave you? And how can you stay in people's inboxes and make this important form of outbound communication, that has one of the highest ROIs of all marketing efforts, work better for you?

Every business and industry has a sweet spot that gets you the maximum engagement at an optimal email frequency. CampaignMonitor research showed that every two weeks is the ideal 'sweet spot' for getting the most people to see your emails without burning out your subscriber list.

But that may not suit your product or business. Breaking news and daily offers would require a higher frequency than news roundups and weekend inspirations, while company updates or product digests could well only go out monthly.

TIP: Save yourself a lot of heartache by asking them how often they'd like to hear from you when they subscribe to your newsletter.

A good idea, especially if your subscriber base is large (if it isn't, grow it more) is to segment the lists and send your newsletters out at different frequencies - the list that responds best will give you an indication of the frequency that's being received well by your audience.

When to send

For years email marketers have agreed that the best time to send is from Tuesday to Thursday, between 8am and 10am as people tend to open their mails in the morning. analysed 10 studies - including from MailChimp, WordStream, GetResponse and CampaignMonitor - and found Tuesdays is hands-down the best day to send emails and if you send two emails a week, choose Thursday for your second day.

Wednesday came in second place several times as the other best day to send.

What time to send

Again, thanks to CoSchedule's extensive research late-morning send times were the most popular in general, around 10 a.m.

A survey of 1 000 workers by Good Technology found that 68 percent checked work email before 8 a.m. and 50 percent checked it while in bed, so scheduling your mail to go out at around 6.a.m. may be worth a shot.

Don't forget to check time zones if you are sending to a global audience.

However, today people tend to split their email accounts between work and personal, and newsletters they receive from non-work-related interests have caused a spike in night-time and weekend opening.

Work and business-related mails would be better received during working hours - either first thing in the morning or during the 2 p.m. lull. Hobby and lifestyle-related content may be more welcome over the weekend or evenings when people are catching up on these topics.

This goes along with increased opening on mobile, with the 2014 ExactTarget mobile behaviour report finding that mobile activity after work is on the up.

And remember, the most important aspect of your email is the content. If that's good enough, you can send any day or time you want, and just about as frequent as you like.