How to create an effective newsletter
Posted on September 26th, 2012 by Deepak Dhiman
An effective way to market your business online is to send an email newsletter or e-newsletter. You can publish an e-newsletter to attract new customers or even to keep employees up to date on company happenings. A newsletter can be considered as a soft sell approach for promoting your business. It is also a tool that creates credibility for your business and above all, it positions your business right on top of the minds of its recipients. Email newsletters are a very effective and simple way to turn prospects into customers and customers into lifetime ones.
A simple and typical newsletter is a one-way communication where information is provided to customers on product updates or some important announcement is made. The purpose of such a customer newsletter is not only to share useful content, but also provide information about your business, products and services.
Creating a successful newsletter, which is an excellent marketing tool for your business, requires proper planning and execution. Then only can it be rewarding and you will see the results as glowing feedbacks from subscribers and customers. Also, your online sales will scale new heights and you will see the development of strong customer relationships and brand loyalty deepens.
Let us first see why you should consider the option of an e-newsletter. The major ones are:
- It is very easy and simple to create a newsletter.
- It is a very cost-effective way to reach a large audience.
- You will be able to connect with your target audience on a more personal level, than other marketing tactics.
- E-mail newsletters have a quick production turnaround time and also offer facilities for full-color designs.
- It is a simple PR tool that draws attention to your business or site. It is rather, an extension of your site.
- A quality newsletter sent out regularly, will provide updates about your business to clients, potential clients, the media, and other important sources.
However, as with any marketing tool a poorly executed newsletter can lose you customers faster than you gain them. It is therefore necessary to properly plan and execute your e-newsletter.
Here are some ways to make sure that your newsletter is really effective and a surefire success!
- Choose an apt name: Use all your creativity when choosing a name for your newsletter. Improve the marketability of your newsletter by giving your newsletter a name that will stand out in the memory of your readers. The name should attract readers and not put them off by sounding staid and serious. The name or title of your newsletter is its icon and symbolizes its content It is better to have a short title, especially as it will permit the use of a large type size. Try not to use names that create an image of bragging or boasting, that may put off readers.
- Short and sweet: Newsletters should be a quick and easy to read. Your readers should be able to finish reading the newsletter within a few minutes. Lengthy newsletter will distract the readers. If the articles are short, the probability of your reader find something interesting to them will increase. A reader will prefer to receive a single-page newsletter every month, rather than a four-page or eight page newsletter. The aim of your newsletter is to build awareness among your customers and future customers. So, the shorter your newsletter, the more frequently you can mail it and send to more prospective customers. Short and sweet will provide you the results you desire.
- Decide on the voice and tone: Decide what tone you want your newsletter to be. Should it be humorous, newsy, gossipy, serious, semi-serious or playful? First establish the tone of your newsletter before you begin to design or write it. And remember to be consistent. You should follow this same tone in all subsequent issues of your newsletter. Remember that your tone should enhance the image you want to portray and also connect with your audience. E-mail newsletters aren’t e-mail promotions designed to stimulate immediate action, neither is it a form of sales and promotional copy or a corporate communications. Rather, your newsletter is a one-on-one conversation with your customer.
- Frequency: Do research, conduct a survey and determine how frequently your readers will want to receive your newsletter. Then ensure that you can meet that commitment. The frequency of your newsletters should not be such that your readers regard it as a nuisance. A weekly newsletter is ideal. But don’t make a commitment unless you are sure you will have enough to attract your readers every week. Don’t just put together a newsletter just because you have to be ‘on time’. Make sure that you will have something interesting to say.
Remember, that it is the frequency of mailing that builds familiarity, and it is that familiarity that inspires return visits.
- Pack a punch: The front page of your newsletter should be a knockout. Put the best article and the most interesting piece write on the front page of your newsletter to draw the attention of your readers. Once readers are interested, they will flip through the whole newsletter.
- Be human: Connect with your readers at a personal level. You are talking to your readers who are human beings. Do not use jargon, drop the sales pitch, and be as honest as you can, showing that you are a human being. Add a comment or two, few lines of editorial, an editor’s note, a few words of opinion. All these add the human touch to your newsletter and do not make it inanimate! Let the authors have bylines, or list some names in each issue, so that the readers feel that they are relating to real people.
- Lean layout: Make the lay out of your newsletter simple and easy to read. Remember, the first impression is the best impression, especially as far as readers are concerned. If your newsletter is aesthetically pleasing, it will automatically drive readers to where you want them.
- White space makes your newsletters attractive and easier to read. White space can be in the form of generous margins, which should be at the tops and bottoms of pagers. You may even consider leaving some columns blank; you can devote the first column to photos or short topics.
- Lines of text stretching from one edge of the screen to the other are definitely difficult to read. Keep the text lines shorter, to make it easier for readers to keep their place when following text
- Strive for simplicity in your design. Do eliminate unnecessary boxes and border. Do not used too much bold or italics within your body copy.
All, these will make your newsletter more attractive to the readers!
- Special inclusion: Include a promotion or special offer in your newsletter. This is a way to attract customers. Also, do have an About Us section describing your business and which provides full contact information for your business, including an email address, Web site address, telephone number, mobile number and mailing address.