Articles, Blog

5 Tips for Building & Distributing an E-Newsletter


NATALIE: Not only can an
e-newsletter help your congregation stay connected, it can also cultivate
a relationship with visitors. You’ve collected the e-mail
addresses, so now you’re ready to build and distribute
the e- newsletter. At United Methodist
Communications, we want to help you get started with these quick tips. 1. Serve your readers. When you set out to
create an e-newsletter,
keep your reader in mind. Are you giving them
what they want to read? Avoid a self-serving perspective
by cutting language like ‘we need…’ or ‘help us out.’ Make it about them instead. Ask yourself, ‘If I was a
subscriber, what would I want
to read?’ Ask for feedback. Include a quick poll get
your readers’ opinions. 2. Create an identity. Create an e-mail account that’s
unique to your e-newsletter. A separate account ensures
that “returned” e-mails won’t
bog down your personal inbox. Plus, when recipients
can easily identify
who the e-mail is from, it makes them more
likely to open it. 3. List maintenance
is mandatory. When you ask members
and visitors for their
e-mail addresses, let them know your
intentions upfront. If someone opts out of your
database, make sure you remove their address before future distributions. You can keep track of these on
your own in a spreadsheet or there are services that
will do the work for you at
a small cost. Just search Google for
“e-newsletter provider”
to explore options. 4. Sharing is caring. Post the link to your
e-newsletter on your social media pages and feature
it on your website. This is a great way to
alert readers who are not
yet on your mailing list. Include a small sign-up
form on your website. This will build your
subscriber list over time. Include social share buttons
and the “forward to a friend”
option. Facebook and Twitter provide HTML codes that you
can add to your template to
link to your pages. 5. Send it to yourself first. Before you hit send on the
entire list, test your work. Send it to your own
e-mail account to see
what it will look like. If you have multiple accounts
across different providers, like one on Gmail and one on Outlook, you can send it to both
and compare what your creation will look like when your recipients open it in
their own accounts. And, as always, proofread.
And there are your five tips! To get more tips, including
how to write articles
that get noticed, go to www.youtube.com/mycomtips
or visit our website at www.umcom.org.

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