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If the value of a mailing list is gold, publishing a newsletter would have to fall into the platinum category.
Naturally, you can keep in touch with your mailing list members without a newsletter, but why pass up the opportunity to gain their respect and trust on a regular basis.
If you merely contact your list members on a random basis, you risk the possibility that they’ll forget who you are. Or even worse, what your product or business is all about.
With a newsletter, you have the perfect opportunity to step into the privacy of their homes on any given day of any given week or month. You decide. And once you do - and you arrive at their inbox - you have their undivided attention.
At least, that’s what you’re hoping for. Their undivided attention.
The first thing you have to do, of course, is develop a newsletter that your readers will be hungry to devour, from top to bottom.
In all honesty, that’s not an easy task. Especially when you consider how many emails the average viewer receives on a daily basis. Competing with tons of junk mail, carefully drafted solo ads by other marketers, and dozens of newsletters that have already been subscribed to can give anyone reason to pause.
In many cases, those types of obstacles have prompted webmasters to not only think twice about having their own newsletter but caused them to decide not to publish one at all. Ever.
But when you calculate the enormous benefit of publishing a newsletter, it’s something that needs to be taken quite seriously. After all, a good deal of revenue is at stake.
• The more people you can contact on a regular basis, the more income you’ll generate.
• The more information and advice you can provide, the more income you’ll generate.
• The more respect and trust you establish between you and your subscribers, the more income you’ll generate.
That’s the good news.
The bad news is how much time and effort is involved in publishing a newsletter. All kidding aside, it’s a lot of work. And you need to be prepared to handle that volume of work before you send out your first issue.
As long as you enter into this decision with your eyes wide open - and with a totally realistic attitude - you can easily manage the burden (or reward, depending on how you look at things) of a scheduled publication.
Unless you have nothing else to do (which is highly unlikely), don’t choose to send your newsletter every week. Instead, start with one that goes out every other week or possibly once a month.
That way, you’ll have an opportunity to ease into things, get a feel for what you can do in the time that’s available between issues. Then, if everything goes well and you decide to publish more frequently, you can do so without difficulty.
What helps the most is having content ready long before your start sending out the newsletter.
That gives you a cache of articles, information, and features that can be quickly and easily inserted.
Or, if you don’t include any features that require current dated information, you can create entire issues ahead of time (say three or four months in advance). You can even stockpile content that relates to different areas of your newsletter, like how-to tips, resources, and articles.
If your features do happen to rely on current information - such as reviews of products that have just been released - you can create the majority of the issues ahead of time and then add the final touches just prior to publication.
Either way, it cuts down the amount of pressure you would feel if you had to write everything from scratch within the small time frame that exists from one newsletter issue to the next.
As far as the focus of your newsletter is concerned, only you can decide. Depending on what type of business you’re promoting and the customer audience you‘ll be reaching, you could base your content on tips and advice, in depth topic-related information, or simply a “joke of the week” concept.
You can publish in text, HTML, or online format. Or a combination of all three. But regardless of how or when you publish, you need to make certain you follow the most important success factor…
Above all else, your newsletter must provide interesting and valuable content.
If not, your readership and financial gain will be minimal, or worse, non-existent. If, on the other hand, you can secure the undivided attention of your subscribers, your newsletter (and subsequently your business) will be a resounding success.