Crafting a newsletter should feature on your Communication Chefs Table, all you need are the right flavours
Anyone can make a cake, right? Not really. Not everyone can make a cake that is savoured in memory – that makes you remember the time and place, and exactly with whom you shared it.Now that cake (you know the one) is rather like creating a good newsletter.
The science is as simple as following a recipe and adding in your own special blend of corporate branding, but the art of making it memorable comes from the creative combination of the information, visuals, nuances, and excitement that you choose to add to it.
As with cake baking, every recipe will have its key ingredients that need to be added. In the writing and designing of a newsletter, there is no difference. You’ll need the following ingredients:
#1 – a dollop of a killer headline
Did you know that 79% of readers are scanners? Only 16% of people ever read every word. This means you need to make sure you grab or hook your reader’s attention quickly. The hardest part of the flop-proof newsletter is getting it opened, and to do so you need a headline or subject line that your reader can associate with or that entices interest. Don’t sell, stay away from word combinations like ‘apply now’, ‘dear friend’, ‘free’, or ‘save money. Rather spend time coming up with an intriguing headline that is going to get people’s attention and have them clicking on the open button quicker than you can say Master Chef.
#2 – a sprinkling of a short, punchy intro
You’ve got your readers attention, now what? You want to introduce the newsletter while enticing them to continue reading. The introduction should include a short, interesting summary of what the newsletter is all about, giving them taste testers of information covered in the content.
#3 – a generous helping of a feature article
One interesting, relevant feature article should act as the main focus of interest for the newsletter. Don’t lose the momentum you’ve worked so hard to gain now. Keep the feature article long enough to contain relevant information that people want to read, yet short enough that they don’t lose interest.
#4 – several spoonfuls of snippets
Adding an additional articles section with additional short pieces of information is a great value-add to a newsletter. Give the reader a one liner taster of the subject matter with a call-to-action of ‘click here to read more’, which could take them to your website or blog. Keep momentum once again. Write persuasive copy and keep it interesting.
The Perfect Method:
Now that you have the ingredients ready, it’s time to fold them together delicately, adding in your special brand of corporate magic to make the newsletter rise. Consider the following tips:
• Know your audience – if you don’t know who you are speaking to and what they want to know, how will you know what they want to read about?
• Define your corporate brand – what is your corporate or company’s style and tone? What typography matches your brand? If the newsletter were a person, what would he/she look, sound, and feel like?
• Be visual – the digital age allows us to make use of delectable images, infographics, and artwork that can make the words come to life. Use images and graphics in your newsletter to really give it the wow factor and to make it more bite-able.
• Timing – getting the timing right is key. Do your readers want a newsletter weekly, fortnightly, monthly, or quarterly?
A newsletter is still a powerful way of informing your customers about your business, or communicating internally with your staff about the company goings-on. A newsletter is meant to inform, add value, and encourage engagement with the reader. Take the time to create a robust recipe that is going to ensure that your news and views are not only read, but enjoyed, every time.