The FAQs About Newsletters

by Jennifer Beever, Marketing Consultant
Copyright New Incite, All Rights Reserved

Newsletters are excellent marketing tools, but many companies think they’re not effective. Answers to the following frequently asked questions will give you “new incite”about how to plan and execute an effective newsletter.

Do you really need a newsletter?
Newsletters are an extremely effective and credible method of staying in front of your target audience. Newsletters are often viewed as more valuable in the eyes of the recipient than direct response mechanisms such as direct mail or advertising. They can be very effective when you have to educate through your marketing, as in the case of a new product early in its life cycle or when you are selling professional services.

Should you print or email your newsletter?
The Internet has proliferated text emails, colorful HTML e-letters, marketing offers and more. However, promotional e-letters are less likely to be read and could be summarily deleted if your audience is busy replying to more important, transactional email. E-letters are better used for communicating with customers or opt-in members of your network with whom you have a close relationship and whom look forward to what you offer (event information, discounts, advice on complex matters).

Print newsletters are better for promotional purposes. A print newsletter that appears to add value is often put in the “To Read” file and grabbed on the way to the airport, doctor’s waiting room, or weekend away. Print newsletters that are well designed fulfill at least two of the three different ways in which people learn: visual mode (reading, graphics) and tactile mode (open, turn pages, feel the paper).

What’s your objective?
Don’t create a newsletter just to get something in front of people. As with planning for any marketing activity, you need to ask what your objective is. Is it to educate clients or customers, to sell products or services, to stay in touch with your network of clients, customers and referral sources? Good newsletters can have several objectives. No matter how many, each article in the newsletter should be written to serve an objective.

How long should the newsletter be?
Today people don’t make much time to read. It is better to send out a shorter newsletter (two to four pages) more frequently than to send a lengthy newsletter infrequently. Articles in the newsletter should be relatively brief or at least have subtitles, bullet points, and lists that help break up the text for the reader.

How much should you spend?
The cost of your newsletter ranges depending on number of pages, paper quality, whether you use color, etc. As an example, a four color, four-page newsletter printed on high-quality gloss stock might cost as little as $2000.00 per issue if professionally produced.

No matter what kind of newsletter you create, make sure you distribute it regularly. Newsletters are more effective if received frequently. They create brand for your company and a sense of value-add to your audience. For “New Incite” on your newsletter, call 818-347-4248 or email jenb@newincite.com.

Author Jennifer Beever is a marketing consultant and founder of New Incite Marketing Analysis and Design. New Incite is the outsource marketing resource for growing businesses. The company provides marketing planning, implementation, results tracking and organizational development services for its clients. Contact Jennifer at 818-347-4248 or by email.

This article may be reprinted with permission of the author. Please contact Jennifer Beever at 818-347-4248 or by email for permission. Proper acknowledgement of the author, including name, company, and contact information, must be made with use.