One of the easiest and most cost effective ways a solo entrepreneur can stay in touch with clients and contacts is with an e-mail newsletter. E-mail is a convenient, reliable method of getting your marketing message out there.
I think the worst one I’ve received lately was a blatant sales pitch to everyone in a networking group from a personal e-mail address AND all the recepient’s e-mail addresses were displayed. This is someone I’ve met, so I sent a gentle e-mail explaining how to use bcc with a link to an article on e-mail newsletters.
Your newsletter should present the same professional image as your other marketing materials and use consistent colours and graphics.
The first consideration is your message. Your content has to be interesting enough that the recipients will read it. What’s your are of expertise? What’s new in the industry? What tips can you give that will help them in their business?
I like to keep the newsletters short, no more than three main points in the article. No matter how riveting the topic, I lose focus after about 5 minutes reading an e-mail.
In my newsletter, Tips From the Technology Coach, I give recipients tips that help them to use their computer more efficiently.
My last newsletter explained what Microsoft Service Packs are and why it’s important to keep your system updated and I’ve recently added a "green computing" tip. The feedback from these basic computer tips has been positive and several people have commented on a particular topic they enjoyed.
I’m now known as the person to go to with questions about new technology and I’m able to keep in touch with my clients and contacts.
For the next several blog posts, I’ll discuss some considerations for your newsletter.
- how often should you distribute your newsletter?
- subscriptions methods
- statistics .. who’se reading? .. who’se clicking?
- spam? Not me …
- adding offers, coupons, and links
- should I hire someone to write it?
- should it be sent from my web mail server?
Do you have an e-mail newsletter? How often do you publish it and how do you measure it’s success?