Newsletters 101

Welcome to the first weekly post of the blog!

newsletter image


We all love newsletters. Few marketing tools are as easy to use. Newsletter are also cost-effective: they can be created at a very low cost, or even for free; and they allow you to keep a growing list of e-mails of loyal and/or potential customers. My customers always ask me about this tool, which is why I put together a short list of suggestions to make the most of newsletters.

  • Unless your brand/website is about long articles, keep the text to a minimum

Believe me – nobody wants to read a 5 page long newsletter. Nobody, not even your grandma or your closest friends (of course, they’ll never tell you). Your message, no matter how perfectly written, will not be received. Keep it short and sweet.

  • Choose a limited color palette and stick to it

Don’t ever use more than 4 colors within the same newsletter. All colors must be either your logo’s, or match with them in a stylish, soothing way. If you’re into variety, you can use a different palette each time you send out a newsletter. If your brand is very vibrant and your logo already features many strong colors, you might want to consider using a more discreet palette in your newsletters, so that their look and feel doesn’t come across as infantile.

  •  Let images do the talking

It’s a good idea to invest in a good stock photo service; or, invest some time and money in taking pictures that look nice and professional. Image-driven advertising is a very strong trend right now, and it will continue for a few years. This will also help you keep your text brief – the photos and/or illustrations that you include in your newsletters must be appealing and contemporary, and they must tell the story of your brand/product/service.

  • Don’t bombard your subscribers with more than 1 newsletter per week

Overwhelming your subscribers with newsletters is not only the best way of assuring that your send-outs will end up in their “Deleted” folder – it also makes you and your brand look desperate for attention and, yes, it’s pretty much ‘begging’ for a sale. You and your brand are worth more than that. Be selective and smart: choose the timing and frequency of your newsletters wisely.

  • Resist the temptation of adding subscribers without their consent

It’s happened to all of us: a business contact, a friend or a relative sends a collective e-mail using the CC option instead of the CCO (hidden copy) one. Look at all those e-mail addresses, wow – right in front of us, ready to be selected, copied and pasted in our databases. We practically drool! After all, what’s wrong with doing that? We might even know many of those persons whose e-mails we’re ‘grabbing’. Who will notice? Ok – hold it right there. Newsletter platforms (AWeber, MailChimp, Constant Contact, etc.) have verification mechanisms which allow them to keep spammers at bay. When you enter a person’s e-mail address into your database through one of these platforms, the system automatically sends that person a confirmation link via e-mail. If that person never clicks on the link, they will never receive your newsletter anyway and your work will go o waste. Worst case scenario: if the person gets the link and reacts in a negative way – “I never asked to be on this list!, how dare they?!?” – and file a complaint, the newsletter platform you use will place you on spam-watch; which might lead to the cancellation of your service. I know many of us are eager to make our databases grow by any means possible, but let’s keep things in perspective and remember that patience always bears fruit. Maybe our database will not grow overnight, but we will have the certainty that the people we’re reaching are those who really want to be reached, and that our reputation is in good shape.

What do you think of these suggestions? Can you think of any other(s)? Please  write them in the comments!

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