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Internal emailing statistics: how can you measure the performance of your newsletter?

Do you send newsletters to your organization’s employees on a regular basis, but are not sure how to really measure their performance? We’ll take you on a tour to understand all internal emailing statistics.

The newsletter is a common tool when it comes to internal communication. But is it really effective? The reading habits and content consumption trend to evolve, and so do the expectations of the employees. 

It is therefore essential to regularly measure the performance of your internal newsletter, so you can make it evolve in the right direction.

Internal emailing statistics: the main indicators

The key performance indicators of an internal newsletter come from emailing marketing. Here is a quick overview :

Reception and opening indicators

Bounce rate (or return rate) : this ration helps you to understand the difference between the emails that you sent out, and the emails that have actually been received. It is calculated this way :
(number of emails that were not delivered / number of emails that were sent)*100

In the marketing field, we usually differentiate between 2 types of bouncing:

  • soft bounce, that is linked to temporary issues (the mailbox of the recipient may be full, for instance)

  • hard bounce, which means that the recipient’s email address does no longer exist

In internal communication, an email that is not received usually means that the employee in question has left his/her job. In that case, you may want to clean your mailing list.

The open rate : it is the proportion of emails that were open among the emails that were delivered. It is calculated as follows:
(number of opened emails / number of delivered emails) * 100

Takenote that only unique openings are taken into account here. The objective is to know the proportion of employees who have opened the email, not to know if some of them have opened it several times.

The result is therefore an indicator of the interest that the employees show toward the newsletter. By tracking the open rate, you can find out whether :

  • The employees appreciate the newsletter 

  • The topic of each edition has an impact on how attractive it is 

  • The timing of the mailing affects the number of people who reads it

The indicators regarding the attractiveness of the content

The click through rate : it is the proportion of recipients who have clicked on at least one link in the email. The formula is

(number of clicks on at least one link/ number of emails that were delivered) * 100

This indicator allows you to know the effectiveness of the call to actions and the attractiveness of the links that are displayed.
However, this performance indicator should be looked at with the newsletter objective in mind. For example, if this is an informative email that summarizes the latest news, it may not prompt many people to click. The employees only have to read the news that the email contains.

The reactivity rate : however, if the objective of the newsletter is to bring traffic to the intranet, the click through rate is not enough. In this case, you would need to also look at the reactivity rate. This calculation works in the same way, but the formula is now based on the number of emails  that were opened, and not just the number of emails that were delivered.

How to use the statistics of the internal emailing

The statistics of the internal emailing allow you to know the effectiveness of the newsletter in its current format. How many employees open the newsletter? How many of them read it? What is the percentage of readers who click on links? Those are Key Performance Indicators that need to be looked at regularly to make sure that the tool is attractive.

It is possible to also look at the traffic stats on the intranet (or the website) and compare those with the newsletter performance in order to know the percentage of visitors who were brought to the website by the newsletter.

Checking those statistics is essential to make sure the tool is efficient. Depending on the results, you may need to

  • modify the newsletter if it is no longer efficient, 

  • measure the success of those changes, to validate them or to adapt the newsletter again 

When choosing your internal newsletter provider, it is essential to check whether the different softwares do provide an easy access to those indicators.

If in the end the newsletter does not have an audience that is big enough to justify its cost (both in terms of budget and the time spent on it), internal communication teams should not hesitate to redesign it entirely, or rethink their approach. Alternatives do exist to bring the information to the employees, like the company’s social media or an internal mobile app.

Create your own internal emailing statistics

If you send several newsletters internally, you will want to compare the performance of each one. This will allow you to know for example if the general newsletter was as successful as other messages targeting smaller groups.

Usually, targeted content is more read than “mass mailings”. But this would also depend on your industry, and the structure of your newsletter. Indeed, short emails with lots of illustrations are for example more successful than others.

Your company is unique, and has its own specificites. To make your indicators really relevant, it is therefore important to use them in the long-term. Your initial conclusions may also be confirmed by an internal survey, in which you will ask all the employees what they think of all the internal communication tools.

Create and send a professional company newsletter