Five Ways to Speed Up Newsletter Production

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To get the most from your ezine, you need to send email to your list on a regular schedule. But coming up with articles for your newsletter and putting it all together takes time. Use these five tips to make producing your newsletter faster and easier, and be sure to check out the newsletter resources at the end.

How often do you send email to your newsletter subscriber list? Once or twice a month? Once a quarter? Whenever you get around to it?

To get the maximum benefit from your newsletter, you need to send email to your list on a regular schedule. If your mailings are primarily promotional in nature (i.e., about new products, special sales, etc.) you can send them once or twice a month without annoying your subscribers. If you add editorial content to your mailing -- articles that your readers will find valuable even if they don’t buy any of the products you promote in the mailing - then you can send your newsletter at least once a week.

“Easier said than done,” you say? You just don’t have the time to write and produce newsletters once a week or can’t think of anything to write about that often, perhaps?

Fortunately both problems are easily overcome. Here are five ways to make it easy to write, edit and email your newsletter to your list on a regular basis.

1 ) Hire a freelancer writer
Sure, it’s your company newsletter, but there’s no reason any of it has to be written by you or your staff. A good freelance writer who knows your industry can get the job done quickly and professionally. Depending on your preferences and the deal you cut with the writer, the articles can carry the writer’s byline or go out under your name or the company’s name without attribution to the writer.



2 ) Invite guest experts to write for you
You’ve probably met a variety of people in your industry who are experts in their field -- but don’t directly compete with you. Tap into their knowledge -- and stroke their ego -- by asking them to write a guest column for you occasionally. In lieu of payment, offer them a link to their web site and short author’s bio at the end of the article.

3) Ask your readers to contribute articles
Readers love to share their experiences, and having them do so, builds up a feeling of community for your newsletter and site. Include a note in one or more newsletters telling them you’d love to hear how they use your products or information, and let them know you may publish some of the best submissions. (Don’t promise to publish everything. Not everything you get will be worth publishing.) When you use a submission, be sure to archive a copy of the newsletter on your website. Then send the reader an email with a link to the archived article. That way the contributor can forward the link to all their friends. If you’ve included a newsletter signup box on the page, those friends may join your mailing list, too.

4) Check out article distribution sites
Article distribution sites (free web content and free ezine article sites) are sites that aggregate articles from many different writers who want to have their articles distributed and made available for reprint. The writers upload the articles to the sites, and give blanket permission to reprint their articles as long as their author’s resource box and contact information is retained. The writers benefit by getting their name and website links published on sites that use their articles. You benefit by getting free editorial content. Not all the editorial material is of equal quality, but if you pick through the article listings, you may find articles by authors, experts and public speakers that will be perfect for your newsletter. You can find article distribution sites by searching the web for “Free Web Content”, “Free Articles” or “Ezine articles”. You’ll also find a list of sites on the resource link below.

5) Hire a freelance editor or virtual assistant to produce the newsletter
Articles are the only thing you can outsource. You can outsource the production, too. A freelance editor or virtual assistant can stay in contact with your authors and writers to be sure that copy gets in on time, is edited, spell-checked and set up in your newsletter template.

What’s the bottom line?
Once you start publishing your newsletter on a regular basis you should see a number of things happen. Sales and/or website traffic will start to climb. Customers will remember your name and come look at your site when they are ready to make a purchase. They’ll also start to forward their copy of your newsletter to their friends and acquaintances -- and that should help build your newsletter list and bring in even more sales.

Newsletter writing and production resource links
Use the resources on this list to find writers, editors, virtual assistants and article distribution sites. Ezine Resources

Editor's note: Not using email marketing yet? Or not happy with your provider? BusinessknowHow.com uses and recommends Constant Contact. We are also a Platinum Solution Provider and receive commissions for sales from Constant Contact. Try it free today.

© 2005, Attard Communications, Inc.

About the author:
Janet Attard is the founder of the award-winning  Business Know-How small business web site and information resource. Janet is also the author of The Home Office And Small Business Answer Book and of Business Know-How: An Operational Guide For Home-Based and Micro-Sized Businesses with Limited Budgets.  Follow Janet on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/JanetAttard.

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