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Keep in front of Customers with an e-newsletter

Use the web to educate and inform your customers

Summary:

Have you ever thought of doing a newsletter to stay in touch with your customers and prospects but after considering the time and expense to produce a regular communication decided it wasn’t worth it? Well, perhaps an e-newsletter is the way to go for your business. Here’s some information to help get your e-newsletter off the ground without breaking the bank.

Keywords: e-newsletter, newsletter

It’s one of the simplest ways to use the Web to stay in touch with your customers, and connect with new customers – an email newsletter. Unlike traditional newsletters, you do not incur the printing and mailing costs and with a little innovation, finding the content can be easy too. All of these benefits make an e-newsletter a great customer touch point.

You don’t have to be a writer – keep it short and sweet.

Right now, I bet some of you are saying “I’m not a writer! I don’t have time to sit around and write an e-newsletter every week, I’m too busy running my business.”

Relax, you don’t have to be a writer, and you don’t have to write War & Peace to get an e-newsletter up and running. In fact, to begin with, you should keep your e-newsletter brief. You don’t want to burn yourself out and give up after a month or two. Additionally, everyone gets loads of email, so your customers and prospects probably don’t have time to read a huge, lengthy e-newsletter even if you write it.

Keep it simple and keep it short, here are some ideas…

If you’re a local restaurant, consider writing a quick recipe every week. Your customers can’t eat with you every night, but they could easily come to love the recipes you freely share. Or, if you’re worried about giving away your culinary secrets, why don’t you give a quick lesson in food – without the recipes. You can write a few paragraphs about selecting fresh food at the market, or how you learned to prep and chop. Or, with the increased interest in wine, give a short wine tip each week.

If you’re a local insurance agent or financial planner consider how many of your customers really understand investments and money. You could use your e-newsletter for Investment 101 and explain the very basic principles of saving money and sound finances.

If you run a local movie theater, you could offer your customers a weekly Hollywood history lesson – along with the list of movie showtimes.

This same breadth of ideas can be applied to any business. What helpful information could you share with your customers?

Remember, no one likes a hard sell

If you spend every word of every e-newsletter you send out touting yourself or your products, you’ll see your subscribers quickly dwindle. That’s guaranteed. Give your customers brief, easily digestible info they can use. They’ll value you for it, and more importantly, they’ll remember you for it.

Pick the right frequency for you and your industry

The frequency of your email newsletter depends on your business. If you’re running a local restaurant or retail shop, and your goal is to drive customers to your business, you may want to consider a more frequent newsletter that can showcase a coupon, a new menu item, or a special sale.

Some businesses just aren’t suited for a weekly newsletter, but a monthly e-newsletter is still a great, cost-effective, and simple way to market your business. If you are a realtor, a services provider or a consultant, this might be the right frequency for you to share relevant information with your target market.

Final words of wisdom

If you are concerned about the commitment of publishing a regular newsletter – try it for a few months without sending it to anyone – to give yourself a trial run. You’ll know if this is something you can keep up with after a few “undistributed” editions.

When you do start publishing your newsletter, don’t forget to remind your readers to Tell A Friend about your e-newsletter. With e-newsletter software, you can add a link so that non-subscribers can easily subscribe to your e-newsletter with one click.

Finally (and this is an important one), keep in mind that if a customer or prospect asks you to take them off your email list (this goes for e-newsletters or email marketing), you must remove them from your distribution list immediately – it’s the law.



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