Saturday, February 21, 2009

Your E-Newsletter

I meet a lot of people who are interested in having an e-mail newsletter, so I thought I would review the benefits and best practices.

Benefits of an e-newsletter
1. Your clients, prospects and partners remember that you exist - this is the single most important aspect of an e-newsletter: it provides critical recognition that you are around and available.

2. You can share information about what you do that others might not be aware of - a lot of times, our contacts stick us in a box based on what they personally experienced when they worked with us. By writing informational articles about the broad services you provide, you are able to make that box bigger.

3. People will like you - when done correctly, an e-newsletter builds trust in your consistency, follow-through and integrity. In other words, it will make people like you, and everyone knows that people buy things from people who they like.

Best practices of an e-zine

  • Building your list - don't randomly add everyone you have ever met to your list. Build it slowly, and make sure that you get permission to send information to someone's inbox. An easy way to do this is to 1) ask people if you may add them to your list, or 2) add a line to your e-mail signature inviting people to sign up. Also make sure that signing up for your e-newsletter is really easy on your website.

  • Sending policies - how often you send an e-newsletter totally depends on the business you are in, but general practices usually suggest a range of once-weekly to once-monthly. Some people are very successful with sending an e-newsletter daily, while others send e-newsletters just once quarterly. How often you communicate depends on your market and what your list members expect from you.

  • Content - the best e-newsletters feature information that matters to their target audience. Although the ultimate goal of an e-newsletter is to convert people to buy from you, you don't want to make your e-newsletter all about buying. Remember, one of the main benefits of an e-newsletter is that you can get people to like and trust you. Don't damage that by being overly promotional.
Good luck! Oh, and if you would like to sign up for my monthly e-newsletter about marketing, please click here :-)

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