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The News About Newsletters
"A newsletter is the paring knife of communication tools. It seems simple and is easy to take for granted. Handled well, however, it's a highly capable tool." --Al Czarnecki Communications
Test yourself Newsletter Quiz:
Q. Do I need a newsletter?
A. Yes, because ?
a) my business coach says I need one.
b) most speakers have one.
c) I believe it would be a perfect component for my communication strategy and action plan for building platform. It will be consistent with the strategy and congruent with all the other tactics (advertising, brochure, business card, web site, new book, sponsorships, etc.) It will also reinforce my messages in a cost-effective way.
d) I want an additional tool to promote advance sales of my new book.
e) It will cost nothing, won't take any time and I haven't any time.
f) It's a project I would enjoy, or could easily delegate.
B. What's in it for whom? Scratch your head. What are specific benefits for me? What's in it for the reader? Who are my mover and shaker recipients? If content is king, what would compete with their golf game? How much subtle sell should I include, what value-added? Will it be interactive? Will you survey your readers for preferences and suggestions for content? Will you run competitions? Offer prizes?
C. Once you've drawn up your list of proposed recipients, what would you like them to do with your newsletter? Choose only five of the following:
a) delete unread and block further delivery
b) print out and use to wrap yesterday's fish
c) sign up, enjoy, share with a friend, request information, keep on file.
d) Sign up and offer you either a media interview on your new book or to review your book for the Globe and Mail/New York Times.
e) Sign up, praise your communication to the skies, sign two other friends and suggest you use their compliments for a testimonial.
f) sign up and book you for the 2008 International Speakers Federation's convention keynote, hire your training company for an eight-year contract and buy 10,000 copies of your book.
D. Next, take a tour. Study your colleagues' newsletters. Venture onto sites such as: www.companynewsletters.com/index.html; www.bcentral.co.uk/marketing/ebusiness/writing-your-newsletters.mspx. Review email campaign software, such as ConstantContact, www.constantcontact.com
E. Identify awards your newsletter could win. Newspapers vie for awards each year. Then you can advertise: ''my award-winning newsletter ?''!
And finally, when you send out your newsletter, put us on your list?
By Lindsay Kellock, whose own newsletter is available at www.yourbooksbestfriend.com
J. Lindsay Kellock is a writer, editor, and writing consultant with a background in print journalism and communications. Lindsay's email counseling service enables writers to create sentences that sing. Her email Grammar Person is available Mondays through Fridays at http://yourbooksbestfriend.com
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