I want to share with you one solution to a marketing problem shared by three of my coaching students this month: how to create a powerful online newsletter, or ezine, for cultivating quality clients.
I realize this is not the only source of info you can find on how to write an effective ezine, but it follows my own successful formula, and it addresses mistakes I see repeatedly among my coaching students, whether new to the business or not.
For most of my students, a physical direct mail campaign is part of the marketing mix for gaining high quality clients in the fastest way possible.
But physical mailings are time-consuming and expensive, so I also encourage them to create a free ezine for their target market. Once their ezine readership is high expensive physical mailings with easy, fast, and inexpensive newsletter blasts.
Rather than tell you what mistakes were being made, I will present their solutions below, which gives me more space for illustrating the 4 points I want to make.
Follow these suggestions and I guarantee an ezine that will:
* Enhance your reputation
* Help you develop a loyal and eager readership
* Keep your unsubscribes low
* Help you build a list large enough to produce paying clients.
Determine specifically what you will be sharing with your audience and make it apparent in your newsletter title. The regular content should revolve around your USP, a niche market, or some particular talent you possess.
For instance, if you are very good at creating offers, you will get more interest with an ezine that focuses just on offers than you will with something more general. Notice the difference between these two potential ezine titles and taglines:
* The Copywriting Tip Sheet
* Tons of Tips for Writing Better Copy
* Offers Monthly for Marketers
* Mastering the Offer as an ROI Generator
As a title, "The Copywriting Tip Sheet" is weak because:
A. It is too general. Remember, specifics sell, generalities do not; and
B. The tagline, "Tons of Tips for Writing Better Copy" reveals the writer's desire to PROVE his or her ability, rather than offering something the reader can USE.
How is the second title better, in fact, far superior and destined to be more successful at signing up subscribers? It is better in these crucial ways:
A. "Offers Monthly for Marketers" lets the reader know that this ezine focuses on something specific, offers.
B. It lets the subscriber know that this is an ezine for them, marketers.
C. And the tagline lets them know that the content is not an overt sell job foscusing on what the copywriter knows, but hard-hitting content about offers that the subscriber can actually USE,therefore providing an incentive for the potential client to sign up and actually read the newsletter every time a new issue is published.
When can you ignore Point #1?
When you've reached the status of copywriting gurus like Bob Bly. Bob is so well known and highly regarded in the direct response and copywriting marketplaces that his Bly's Direct Response Letter), can attract readership.
So to wrap up this rather lengthy point, suffice it to say that specifics sell and generalities don't. The ezine with a specific focus will gain and retain more subscribers.
In each issue, stick to one subject and cover it to a depth that you can honestly say you've produced valuable content.
If you have enough experience with your subject matter,you can pull content from your head and create a worthy newsletter in about two or three hours.
If not, be willing to do a little research to offer your reader something of true value. This shouldn't be a burden since in this business, you must always keep increasing your knowledge. Once written and published, you'll be surprised at the many other ways your efforts will pay off.
Create a very strong title.
Point #1 discussed the mistake of creating a general rather than specific ezine title.
Assuming you have decided on your area of expertise, you now need to offer elements that will select your audience,reveal your positioning, and offer a benefit.
Although my own newsletter title targets freelancers rather than marketing directors, its structure allows me to use it as an example.
Here is how I arrived at the title, "Freelancer's Business Bulletin".
First, I wanted to select my niche audience, which is freelancers; second, I want them to know that this is about business-building,so I included the word "Business" to differentiate my ezine from the many that address the craft of copywriting; and third, I wanted to impart a sense of urgent timeliness, thus the use of "Bulletin" over other possibilities such as "ezine," "digest," "tips," or "news" (which shouldn't be used unless you really are presenting news).
Thus the "Freelancer's Business Bulletin," by its title alone, attracts freelancers, my niche/target market, who are interested in building their business, my USP, who want relevant business-building information they can use right now).
Use this simple formula as a starting place, or an ending place, for creating a powerful newsletter title.
Cut the fat.
One of the big giveaways of the novice writer is loose copy. Over the years it gets easier and easier to write succinct, to-the-point copy that conveys strong ideas in the least amount of words.
But no matter how long you have been writing, there is always call for some editing. Copy that is tightly
written, to the extent that sentences and paragraphs
are rewritten if need be, respects the reader and is a pleasure to read.
If your readers look forward to receiving your newsletters, they will open and read them. Anything else, of course, is pointless.
Marketing coach Chris Marlow publishes a free newsletter for freelancers who want to land the high-quality, high-value clients:
Sign up here