It's not a well kept secret: To become a better writer, you need to write and read more. Better writing does several things you're interested in achieving for your business:
- cuts through the clutter
- delivers utility
- connects based on value and relevance
There is something that is as or even more satisfying than social relationships: And that is personal mastery. The command of one's thoughts and ability to communicate them. You develop that muscle by exercising it.
The qualities of a newsletter that will be read are: Anticipated, valuable, and relevant.
I get signed up for a ginormous number of newsletters.
Because client correspondence comes first, I have a zero tolerance policy for a cluttered inbox. Anything that is not relevant to: a) work in progress; b) potential work; c) personal, anticipated, and relevant messages gets filed automatically.
When I dig into the filed pile, relationships and track record get preferential treatment.
Having said all that, I do subscribe to (now) 3 newsletters that I find must reads. They are very different from each other. I wanted to provide them as examples of executions to give you the right idea. It's not a formula or silver bullet that connects, it's the right focus on making a promise, and delivering on it.
Colleen Wainwright has a very conversational writing style that is extremely easy to follow. Along with a main course, she delivers a deal of the month and a site of the month. I do seek recommendations from people I met and who had a chance to get to know me. She gets my clicks.
From me to you
Not me, him. Taylor Davidson writes a premium newsletter for people who want to understand why and how early-stage finance and entrepreneurship is changing. He is more specific on his content focus: Analysis of the confluence of technology and financial services. You may sample it here. He sends a few issues per month.
From publication coach Daphne Gray-Grant was a recommendation from Colleen Wainwright. I just subscribed and already received a useful gift: A mindmapping report to help with writing speed. This newsletter appealed to me because I know I can always use short tips and coaching.
In June, I launched my own monthly Premium Newsletter. I send it the third Tuesday of every month, and it comes with a different and surprise bonus before the month closes.
Each monthly issue, you get a main thinking piece on business with analysis of data and information, observations and insights about trends, additional resources, and special event promotions and gifts when valuable/available.
It's a much more intimate medium and readers' early feedback indicates I'm on the right track.
How do you evaluate what is useful? Does your business communicate with customers regularly via newsletter?
When I wrote and edited a customer newsletter, I knew I was onto something if I was getting emails back with questions, and requests back. Connections are more than clicks and open rates. And they are based upon value and relevance.
These examples cover a range of options. What other good examples would you like to share?
[image courtesy of B Zedan]