Can you imagine what it was like trying to communicate 50-100 years ago? Without the amazing invention of “the internet”, it must have been a pain relying on word of mouth or snail mail to get in touch with people. Luckily, we have since adapted,  giving us the ability to send out information by the simple and satisfying click of a button!

This is where newsletters come in. They have become an innovative way to present information to your audience in an accessible and visually appealing little package—that gets immediately sent to their inbox.

That in mind, learning how to use newsletter software can be finicky. For all the detail-oriented people out there, writing your first newsletter may take a little longer than you had initially planned, and you may want to pull your hair out at points.

But do not fret! We have come up with a guide to help ensure your newsletter-writing process is as seamless and enjoyable as possible with these four easy steps.

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1. Pick Your Newsletter Software

There are several different types software available to create the perfect newsletter for your organization. Each one will possess individual benefits, allowing the final product to display a more personalized result that stays true to your organization’s brand. Some of the more popular software includes:

  • MailChimp: Gives you access to more than 400 templates to choose from. With a drag and drop editor for quick, easy layouts, MailChimp is also available in mobile-friendly versions. The software also gives you the option to code your email directly with HTML and inline CSS. Learn more.
  • Constant Contact: Also has to more than 400 customizable email templates, as well as blank templates, or you can even code directly with HTML and CSS. Learn more.
  • Exact Target: A more in-depth software that is excellent for social media integration and overall analytics. This software is typically used by larger businesses that send out frequent newsletters. Learn more.
  • Emma Mail: Although Emma Mail has only 40 templates to choose from, they pride themselves on their design qualities being far superior to other e-mail marketing software. Having a drag and drop editor similar to MailChimp allows for easy adjustments—while their analytic abilities are easy to use and transform into useable actions. Learn more.
  • AWeber: Has over 150 templates options and integrates with WordPress, PayPal, Eventbrite, along with a few others. Learn more.
  • InfusionSoft: Most known for its ability to separate subscribers, ensuring you can send targeted emails. They also provide detailed customer records so you can see what emails were sent to who and which actions your subscribers took. Learn more.

In the end, it all depends on the results you are looking for from your newsletter. Each possesses its own personal benefits.

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2. Iron Out the Details

By figuring out the little details ahead of time, you will have a better chance to ensure the outcome of your newsletter is more effective. The things you will need to consider:

  • What will the topic of your newsletter be? This is the first thing you should consider when sending out a newsletter. It is vital that the topic of your newsletter is clear and concise to ensure the highest level of engagement from your audience. *Make sure the topic is also consistent with your organization’s brand.
  • Who are you sending the newsletter to? When creating a list of recipients, you need to be sure that the content you are providing them with is something that will catch their interest – which ties in with knowing your target audience. This is the best way to reach the right people in order to increase your organization’s success.
  • What are your outcome goals of sending this newsletter?Why are you sending the newsletter out? What do you hope your audience will learn or do from reading your newsletter?
  • What will the title of your newsletter be? This will be the first thing your audience will read when they receive the newsletter in their inbox. Make sure it has a title that will make them want to open it.
  • What will the design of the newsletter look like? It is vital that the design of your newsletter matches your organization’s brand. Consistency is key within all deliverables a company presents. This includes colour scheme, font, layout, picture quality, and look, etc.
  • When will you send it out?  Timing affects how many people will open your newsletter. Typically, first thing in the morning is the best time to ensure optimal results, but that again depends on your audience.

3. Writing The Newsletter

Once you reach this point, adding in the text should be a breeze. You’ve figured out the topic/theme, you’ve designed the layout, now you need to make sure the language is in line with your brand as well.

When writing a newsletter, it is very important to make sure you stay on topic and to the point. People don’t want to read a newsletter with large paragraphs and in-depth information. They want something that looks nice and is concise. This article from Vertical Response goes in-depth on writing a newsletter.

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4. Tracking Your Results

Finally, this part of creating a newsletter is vital to the success of your efforts. Tracking your results will inform you how many people your newsletter has reached, what they read and if anyone has unsubscribed. You should wait between 5-7 days to fully track the success of your newsletter to ensure optimal results. Things you are looking for:

  • Traffic
  • What people clicked on
  • Frequency of visits
  • Engagement rate
  • Social mentions and interactions.

And that’s it! Simple enough right? Durrell Communications is here to help you get the word out. If you are struggling with writing newsletters let us know and we will help you find success!