How to Publish a Newsletter to Supplement Your Existing
Donald Nelson, copyright 2003
If 100 people came to your
website and one person ordered something, does that
other 99 surfers were not interested in your products or
services? Probably not. Every day there are lots of good
prospects passing through your website and one of your most
important jobs is to engage these people in some
way so that you can bring your message to them again and
again. One of the best ways to do that is through a monthly
newsletter, like this one!
It is not so difficult to publish a monthly newsletter, it
does not require skills that are beyond most individuals or
businesses, and most importantly, the time and small expenses
involved in managing a newsletter will be more than paid for
additional orders for your products and services and in
maintaining better relations with your existing customers. If
you don�t already have a newsletter, follow the steps below
and create one.
1. Collect the subscribers Here's where you give
people a chance to �vote� for your site. Put a form on your
site allowing people to subscribe. You can use any of the free
services that have online mailing list maintenance, and which
provide you with a piece of html to paste onto your page
creating the form, such as is available from
www.bravenet.com or you
can use a paid service such as the one provided by
Alternatively you can install a mailing list management
program on your own server. You could start with a free script
�nomodomo� available from
www.bignosebird.com or you can purchase
more sophisticated scripts.
2. Write a monthly article about your field If
you already have a web site then you must be something of an
expert on the area covered by your site. Share your knowledge
with your web visitors. You don't have to compose a great
literary piece, the simpler it is, the better it is. One of
the advantages of this monthly article is that you will
produce copy which can be posted on your website, and this
copy can help to attract traffic to your website. If you are
not used to writing newsletter articles or web copy, read my
for some easy-to-follow guidelines.
3. Give updates on your existing products and services:
in addition to a main article, a shorter section giving news
about your products is very easy to add. Do you have new
options, changes in price or special offers. Here is your
chance to let
your existing clients and new prospects know about them.
4. Introduce a new product line. Your own newsletter,
sent to people who are interested in your products, should be
one of the first places that your new product is announced.
Later you can do other publicity, but first take care of this
obvious announcement in your own newsletter
5. Give any additional news relating to your product or
service area For example this newsletter is about search
engine optimization and web promotion, and each month I try to
give news about what is going on in the world of search
engines. You can do the same for your field of activity.
6. Include a guest article This is optional.
There is no sense in recreating the wheel. If you see that
someone else has really done a great job in expressing things
that are good for you and your readers, you can include it in
your newsletter. There are tons of free articles available on
all subjects available at websites such as
and your only obligation in using them is to provide the
author�s contact information
7. Develop a standard format to your newsletter, and stick
Most newspapers and magazines have a certain format: for
example world news on page one, sports on the last page,
editorials in the center, etc. By developing a format for your
newsletter, you will save time in building it each month, as
well as help your readers to become familiar and comfortable
with your publication.
8. Encourage your readers to pass on the newsletter to
their friends, or post the articles on their web pages
(providing that they keep the link to your website).
9. Send it out. If you would like to format the article to
wrap at 65 characters or any other custom size, instead of
going all across the page, you can find a free online
formatting service at
If you follow the steps above, you will build a tool that will
help you to create more interest in your products or services,
thus bringing you one step closer to achieving the goals you
have set for your Internet activities.
Nelson is a web developer, editor and social worker. He has
been working on the Internet since 1995, and is currently the
director of A1-Optimization (http://www.a1-optimization.com),
a firm providing low cost search engine optimization,
submission and web promotion services.