E-Newsletters: the "Touch" that goes to them

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E-Newsletters go TO your clients and potential clients
Without them having to click and go anywhere
We'll help you design, write, configure, and choose the very best e-newsletter service for your business needs and to fit your skills.
With over a decade of writing e-newsletters for clients, we know the best formats to use, along with the content and design for YOUR business. Below, find some tips for designing and writing e-newsletters.

What e-Newsletter Program Should I Use?

There are many good e-newsletter services available.  For many people the decision comes down to either cost, features, or ease of use.  I (Barbara) prefer iContact for the features, templates I can alter, and dependability.  It costs about $10/mo for under 500 people.  Many people like ConstantContact.  I decided not to use it for our clients as it required the sender to authorize their subscription, even when bulk imports were being uploaded to the contact list.  However, that may not be the case now.  It is a bit more expensive than iContact, but many business people I talk with simply rave about it.  My husband and one of our clients prefer MailChimp.  I was in the meeting the other day and a professional I highly regard said he uses MadMimi.  The bottom line? Talk to those you know, poll them for their experiences and preferences.  Do a bit of online research and then take the program for a test drive.
What Types of Formats Should I use?
Email has two formats: "Plain text" and "HTML".  What you are reading right now is "HTML". HTML can be formatted, colorized, linked, and have "scripts" embedded in it. While this makes it very useful and "robust" for the writer/sender and easy and pleasant to read for the viewer, it presents a security issue for computers.

I always read my email and send it in "plain text".  It is simply put - plain.  No colors, no embedded pictures, hyperlinks are included, but NO scripts can run from that email to yours or my computer! Thus, it is safer for me.  If I know the sender and trust the content, I will turn my HTML reader on for that email and that email alone. Plain text is also smaller in file size and therefore more easily downloaded.

There are a few other important issues to determine what type of format you use in writing an e-Newsletter. The bottom line: make sure your e-newsletter software allows you to do BOTH rich text (HTML) and plain text.
What About the Size?
For this consideration, think of your target audience and also of yourself.  Do you want a long, large email or a small, concise email.  Here's some suggestions. Develop 3 sizes of e-Newsletters: one small one that has only one or two small file size graphics for short reminders and announcements.  You can link this to a website page so if the reader wants more information, they can obtain it. Develop a second one that is your standard e-newsletter size.  Often this includes: a logo at the top, a few small pictures within it, and at the most 2/3 of a word document size page of information.  A third size can be your "newsletter" that you send out.  This has usually a top banner and a few very small pictures or one medium size picture. This reads more like the type of print newsletter you might receive.  It has a good amount of information in it.  Often, the author links to further information on a website page. When in doubt: survey your clients and e-newsletter list contacts!
What About the Content: What Do I Say?
On the Internet, Content is King. Make certain the content in your e-newsletter provides good, solid information - along with whatever service or product you are showcasing for your company.  Additionally, include good, strong information that pertains to your area of service or products...information that you have researched and provided for them.  You might also showcase a vendor, another business, or a business partner. Make certain your tone and content follow your other marketing endeavors.  For example, if you have a print ad coming out, make certain your e-newsletter contains information and a graphic relating to that ad...then provide a link to more information on a website page. 
How Do I Define the Purpose for My E-Newsletter?
This is an important question.  You may have different purposes at different times of the year, or for each different format or size of e-newsletter.  Mix it up at times - provide excitement to the reader and viewer...remembering that people are very busy and probably doing more than one thing at a time. We suggest you sit down and write out a Marketing Plan.  Include your traditional marketing and Internet Marketing goals.  We can help you with that! We have the resources and expertise to help you with all of your marketing needs and goals! Our strategic alliances provide YOU with rich resources and expert advise.  Call us today for your Marketing Assessment and Marketing Plan!