In this week’s article we’ll be talking about how you can use newsletters to stay top of mind with your prospects and clients and build a lifelong relationship with them.
A Client Newsletter is one of your most important marketing tools for getting an avalanche of referrals and repeat business. Key points to consider:
The most expensive part of marketing is generating the lead and getting the client. Staying in touch with them costs literally pennies in comparison.
Studies show that the #1 reason clients jump from one business to another is lack of communication.
You’ve generated leads and you have their email address and physical addresses – now you must start leveraging this very valuable asset.
It is a marketing sin to not stay in contact with your existing customers and prospects. By sending out a monthly, printed newsletter, you have a surefire way to stay in touch with your customers and prospects, without trying to sell them something.
The Email Newsletter
As we mentioned in last week’s article, get in the habit of regularly sending quality content to your list. And along with that, you need to make the case that they should reward you for this content by referring people to you and by taking advantage of the products/services you offer.
You do this by sending a monthly email newsletter (weekly would be best, but doing it monthly is great to begin with.) Always use a compelling subject line to get people to open the email. We’ll be talking a lot about subject lines in a bit.
The email newsletter (like the print version) should include fun content, articles, recipes, a horoscope, etc. along with some custom content about your customers and you. Again, you want to keep your email newsletter personal, just like you’re talking to someone one-on-one. Use the word “you” a lot, just as you would when sitting across the table.
Here’s what the opening section of the January issue of our example email newsletter looks like:
Email Newsletter Contents
You should always use a consistent format and table of contents. This is a good thing as it gives your newsletter more of a polished, professional feel.
Okay, let’s go past “Funny Business” [Jokes/Humor] and the monthly article and on to the next section you’ll configure:
We suggested the email newsletter as a way to get your message out to your clients and prospects in an extremely cost-effective way.
There are definitely benefits for using this format. But make sure you strongly consider sending out a customized PRINT newsletter as well.
Your PRINT Client Newsletter
So you might be asking, “If I have an email newsletter, why go with a print version?”
The answer: you will get higher readership rates with a print newsletter – emails get ignored and deleted at a very high percentage. Plus, sending out a PRINT newsletter has higher perceived value than your email newsletter.
And don’t skimp by doing this quarterly. Send it monthly.
You are going to mail this newsletter on a monthly basis to all members of your list; to your clients, to all leads, and to prominent members of your community who are circles of influence.
Your newsletter should be fun and entertaining. You do not want the newsletter to be completely about the service you’re providing. In fact, only a very small section should be devoted to your business and articles related to your business. Only part of the newsletter should be devoted to promoting your business. The rest of the newsletter should be fun and enjoyable for your client to read, so they look forward to getting your newsletter.
Your newsletter should reflect your personality. It should look like it’s coming from you. It should sound like it’s coming from you. You do not, under any circumstances, and this is critical, want to make your newsletter look like a mass marketed, slickly-produced newsletter. If it looks too slick, it’s not effective. You want the newsletter to look like you’ve written it yourself.
If you have a community that has a lot of unique vocabulary words, such as “Planet Dan,” you might want to consider an “evergreen” newsletter for your first issue that explains what is unique about your community. GKIC does this with the “No BS Marketing Letter.” Every new member receives the same “evergreen” version as the first issue and it explains the features of every issue.
Here’s what the opening section of the January issue of our PRINT newsletter looks like:
Key Elements of this Page:
- Header with your picture and contact information.
- Article that’s about something of GENERAL interest – this should NOT be about your business or your industry.
- Graphic indicating the month of the newsletter – if you want to get fancy, you could include year, issue #, etc. But this is okay.
- Motivational quotes are always popular.
- Cartoon for fun… you want your newsletter to be FUN!
Key Elements of this Page:
- Subhead that tells you the section name “More Fun Than Should be Humanly Possible” – this lets the reader know, this is definitely a fun newsletter.
- Trivia / Other Puzzle – make sure to give the answers!
- Crossword Puzzle – make sure to give the answers!
- Fun Cartoon here…. OR… You could replace with a banner ad / coupon / whatever to promote your product or service.
Key Elements of this Page:
- Subhead that tells you the section name “This News Is All About You”
- Sections for “New Clients,” “Referrals,” “Client of the Month,” and “Community Life.”
- Horoscope for the month. (If you want to switch it out, you could use the “OTHER FAMOUS BIRTHDAYS” section from the Email Newsletter here.)
Key Elements of this Page:
- Subhead that tells you the section name “The Back Page…”
- Section for “The Lighter Side” which is jokes, goofy quotes, whatever.
- Section for a short article / bit of information.
- Graphic relating to the month / season – what you could replace this with again is some kind of ad for an offer, a coupon, etc.
Why Newsletters Are So Valuable…
They Create Community
First of all, they create a forum that enables you to change people from prospects/customers to members belonging to a community. Sending a newsletter is a great way to have somebody feel as though they belong to a community.
They’re Not Seen as Advertising
Every day when you get a big pile of mail, you start dividing that into different categories. And the big category that you do in your mind is there’s the advertising category – stuff that goes in the round file. Well, newsletters are not perceived as advertising; they’re perceived as publishing – which they have value and you’re going to read that!
They Establish Your Credibility
Newsletters are perceived as a publication – basically, if you write a publication you must be an expert. And somebody would much rather do business with an expert than a salesperson. In addition to that you’ll pay an expert more than you’d pay a salesperson.
They Provide Social Proof
You could highlight customer successes in there. You can show referrals. And you can include testimonials which make it easier to sell to new customers and current customers.
They Get Passed Along
When you send somebody an advertisement they get the ad and they read it. If they get a newsletter that’s positioned as educational and fun, now they’re going to save it and possibly pass it along to somebody else.
They Build Your Brand and Establish Your Positioning
Finally, by sending people your newsletter it gives you the opportunity to build your brand and establish your positioning as THE go-to-person in your industry.
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