How to Create an Email Newsletter

Below you will find some useful tips on how to create an effective newsletter. While the tips are focused on E-newsletters, they can easily be applied to standard print newsletters you mail to your customers and potential customers.

Nicholas H. Parker
Nicholas H. Parker
Content Editor
Published:
April 19, 2021

Newsletters are an integral part of your marketing communications plan. If used correctly, they become a powerful tool to attract new customers and sell your services and products. If used incorrectly, the newsletter can be the barrier between you and your potential customers.

Traditionally, newsletters have been used to disseminate news and information about a company or organization. Some businesses abused their newsletter by “pumping” it up with promotions and ads about their products; making the newsletters one big advertisement. Turning your newsletter into one huge ad campaign creates reader burnout since there’s no real value built into the newsletter; basically, there’s nothing of value for the reader to learn. Readers become tired of receiving “junk” and eventually tune out the newsletter.

Effective newsletter marketers know that providing useful information for readers is what builds the brand relationship between the company and customer. This does not mean that you should not use your newsletter to promote or sell your products or services. What it does mean is that you should use your newsletter to help build your brand with useful articles that educate and inform the readers. In turn, you build a loyal following and when you do insert a promo or offer in the newsletter, you have a higher chance of converting your readers into sales, which is the purpose of your newsletter.

Below you will find some useful tips on how to create an effective newsletter. While the tips are focused on E-newsletters, they can easily be applied to standard print newsletters you mail to your customers and potential customers.

Set Your Goals

As with any project you embark upon, if you don’t have goals, then you don’t have direction; it’s no different with planning a newsletter. The first thing you want to ask yourself is, “What outcome do I want to achieve with my newsletter?” Some possible answers could be, “to inform my readers of a new product or service“, or “I want to educate them on our company and/or products/services.” Regardless of your goal, planning is key. The better your plan, the better your newsletter.

Tone of Your Newsletter

Decide on the tone of your newsletter; how you’re going to come across as the “voice”. Is your tone serious like a newspaper? Will you use sarcasm or humor to convey your message(s). Will your newsletter carry a conversational tone as though you’re speaking to a friend or will it sound like a technical book? Some of the best newsletters out there adopt a conversational style tone and speak to the reader rather than at them.

Newsletter Language

No, I’m not talking about what foreign language you want to write your newsletter in. I’m talking about knowing your audience and speaking to them in a language they can understand. Let’s say you are an IT consultant. and you are trying to get non-techie customers. You’re not going to speak to your audience in a “techie-talk” style. If you do, chances are they won’t understand a lot of what you’re saying and your efforts will have been wasted. However, on the other hand, if your audience is a group of techies, then it would be appropriate to speak to them in “techie-talk” style. So, you need to consider your audience before you begin writing your newsletter articles.

Newsletter Length

Decide on the length of your newsletter. A typical printed newsletter can be a folded 11″x17″ sheet of paper. Your copy should not dominate your newsletter. Rather, you should use what designers call chunking. Take small bits of information and call them out in sections of your newsletter. In other words, if you are writing an article on saving for a vacation, “chunk” your statistics from the article into a separate box, next to the article. You could even do this for quick copy. The idea is give your readers small bits of meaningful information rather than bore them with long bouts of copy.

For E-newsletters, you want to keep your length short; one where your readers can get through in a few minutes. Keep your articles to just a few with links to the full article on your site. In addition, you can use “chunking” in your E-newsletter as it is brief and your reader can get through it easier and quickly.

Newsletter Format

I’m not only speaking about format, but also your visual style. Don’t do what a lot of amateurs do; that is clutter up your newsletter with useless information or cram so much information into a small area that there’s no clear focus. Keep your newsletter clean and simple. Use your company brand colors if you like. But whatever you do, keep it clean and easy to read and find information. In addition, if you are featuring a consistent section with every issue, try and keep it in the same spot for every issue. You will find readers who may want to only read one part of the newsletter. By keeping your sections consistent, your readers can access the information quickly and will appreciate your efforts. It speaks volumes about your company’s organizational skills.

Newsletter Content and Relevancy

Keep your newsletter content relevant to your offerings. For example, if you are selling a financial adviser, keep your content relevant to what you are trying to promote; savings, retirement, investing, etc. You’ll find that some people add sections on cooking, or tips on how to be a better parent, but how relevant is this to a financial adviser’s newsletter? It’s not!

As for content, some articles readers will be interested in reading might include trends in your industry, education issues within your industry, major issues and concerns within your industry, and any innovative ideas that may bring change to the industry that may affect your readers.

In a nutshell, your primary goal with your newsletter is to avoid selling your product or services to your readers, but try and solve a problem they may have. You have to ask yourself, what will the reader get out of this newsletter that will be a benefit to them, not you.

Spelling and Grammar Check

Use a spell checker. Most writing software like Microsoft Word will have a built-in spell checker as well as a grammar checker. Make use of them. In today’s electronic age, there’s really no excuse to make grammatical or typographical errors. Proofread your newsletter as well. Poorly written articles can have a negative impact on your company’s perception. Be certain that you spell-check and proofread your articles.

Article Sources

You, like most people, are probably busy, so writing articles can be a time challenge. However, you can cut down on the time of doing research by following the tips below:

If you have the funds, you can hire a professional writer to do the writing for you. These sites are dedicated to freelancers in all types of fields, including writers. With so many out-of-work writers, you’re sure to find some who can write your newsletter articles for you at affordable rates. And what’s best is that the writers bid against each other for your business!

You can search popular article directories. You will find tons of useful information here, but keep in mind copyright laws. In most cases, you can use the articles, but need to provide the author's name as the writer. If you’re looking to be the authority yourself, then you can use the articles as research for your own article. Trade publications. Again, used for ideas and research for your own articles.

Forums are also an excellent source of information. You can find experts who post important information about their industries or they can lead you to other resources.

Keep a swipe file. Writers have what they call a swipe file. It’s a file of articles, headlines, and anything that may have a copy. They use these as ideas and references or research for their own writing. You can start collecting useful articles for your own publication in your own swipe file.

Graphics and Visual Effects

Newsletters with just type are boring. Incorporate graphics such as graphs, cartoons and photos. You can obtain all of these elements through stock photography agencies at an affordable rate.Use graphics that print well on your printer. Using a good mix of photographs and artwork makes for interesting copy. Too many graphics can leave the newsletter looking cluttered.

Newsletter Frequency

How often will you be sending your newsletter out? Will it be a monthly newsletter? Quarterly? Or even a weekly one? One thing you want to do is be consistent with your mailings or delivery of your newsletter. Your readers will come to expect the newsletter delivered at the same time as the last one. They will actually look forward to it.

Conclusion

Newsletters are a very effective way of promoting your company, it’s products, and/or services. And following some time tested methods as outlined above can insure your success. If you have any additional suggestions to insure a successful newsletter, please leave a comment with your tips and ideas.

Written by
Nicholas H. Parker
Content Editor

Nicholas H. Parker is a content editor at the service where you can buy essay. He used to manage the content team at the company he worked for. Currently, Nicholas writes articles to share his knowledge with others and obtain new skills. Besides, he is highly interested in the web design sphere.

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