If you’re going to go to
the trouble of publishing a newsletter to promote your business, then you need
to get existing and potential customers and people who want to learn from you
to sign up. After all, publishing a newsletter is an investment of both time
(to put the newsletter together) and money (to cover the newsletter-sending
service fees). It won’t pay off to publish a newsletter that no one reads.
You have a major challenge
in making this happen – rising above the crop of other newsletters out there.
Your newsletter has to be valuable enough to be allowed into peoples’
overcrowded inboxes. It’s like your clients’ email inboxes are a velvet-ropes
club, and your newsletter is trying to get to the head of the line.
How can your newsletter
stand out as a VIP?
Follow these 4 steps to
increase your newsletters’ “cool” factor and its’ value:
- Pack your newsletter with consistently
valuable information. If your
information attractive and useful, it will have a better chance of getting
in. How do you do this? Think about questions that your clients have, and
how you can help them by answering those questions. Write about topics
that are interesting and relevant for your target audience. And, be consistent
with the quality of your information – get a reputation for always giving
out valuable information in your newsletter.
Don’t worry about giving away too much information – there will be people
on your newsletter list who will implement your advice, but there will
also be a group who would rather hire you than do it themselves. Mention
at the end of the article that you offer products or services related to
the topic of the article (but don’t fill the newsletter with sales
Keep in mind that the content you create for your newsletter is your
intellectual property. You’ll be able to use that information to promote
your business in other ways, such as publishing it on your website, adding
it to article distribution sites, or even packaging it into a product that
you can sell.
- Package your newsletter attractively. Have you ever bought a product, or chosen one
brand over another, just because of the package design? Even though your
newsletter is not a physical product, and people aren’t paying to receive
it, packaging it well can still help increase the perceived value of the
newsletter. The packaging for your newsletter is like having a trendy
outfit – it can help you stand out from the crowd.
In order to package your newsletter, create a cover graphic for the
newsletter itself, or for the sign-up gift (which we’ll talk about in the
next point) that looks like a booklet or magazine. Use that cover image on
your website to market the newsletter. Having an image appear along with
your promotional text can make your newsletter offer more
The other half of newsletter packaging is to design your newsletter
template itself well. Create a header graphic that matches your other
marketing materials. Design the section headings and titles of articles so
that your newsletter is easy to read and doesn’t confuse the reader.
Clearly distinguish any sales offers in the newsletter from the
informative content. And, use images in the newsletter to add visual
- Offer a great sign-up gift. Create a free report, MP3 recording, video or
workbook that directly relates to your clients’ needs. Offer that as a
free gift to entice people to sign up for your newsletter.
The main purpose of this sign-up gift is to offer readers something in exchange
for their email address. Giving them something in return for their
permission to contact them makes the exchange seem more fair – and if your
giveaway is high-quality, it may even seem to them that they’re getting
the better end of the deal.
The other purpose of this sign-up gift is to make sure that people get
some information immediately when they register – when their interest in
your newsletter offer and getting information from you is the strongest.
That way, they can begin learning before the next issue of your newsletter
- Make it easy to sign up. You want to make sure that once readers
decide that they want to sign up for the newsletter, it will be easy for
them to do so, like having your ID and cash ready when you get to the front
of the line at a club. Tell people exactly what you need from them, and
exactly what they’ll get by signing up. Clearly describe what your
newsletter is about, who would benefit most from signing up, and how they
can register. Use a direct call to action on your website, and tell people
where to enter their email (such as “Enter your email below to receive the
In addition to a clear message about signing up for the newsletter, design
your newsletter sign-up box so that it stands out from the rest of the
content on your web page. This ensures that prospects can tell, at a
glance, that it’s there and that they should sign up. Style your headline
and call to action so that they’re easy to read at a glance and highly
visible. And consider including a product shot of your free gift or your
newsletter cover to call even more attention to the sign up area (see step
If you make sure that your
newsletter looks – and is – valuable to your readers, and that you make it
enticing and easy to sign up for the newsletter, more and more readers will
raise the velvet ropes on their email inboxes and let you in.