Now that you’ve decided to create a newsletter, you are probably wondering what to do next. Well, you’ve come to the right place. Read this list of frequently asked newsletter writing questions.

Should I send an e-newsletter or an old-fashioned print newsletter?

The short answer is that it depends (don’t you love it?) on your marketing goals and the behavior of your target market. Emailed newsletters are less expensive, better for the environment, and easily accessed by the reader. But on the other hand, print newsletters are a dying breed and might be something your readers find comfort in reading. Why not ask your readers which method they prefer and then budget accordingly.

How long should the newsletter be?

What is the goal of your newsletter? Are you promoting an end of the year sale? Are you writing your constituents to inform them of your 2010 initiatives? Proper newsletter length depends on your intent.

If you want your readers to do something (i.e., buy your product or visit your landing page), write and design the newsletter so it is quick to digest. Make the call to action clear and get them clicking with one article or two to four short snippets of text.

On the other hand, a regularly scheduled informative email can be a bit longer. Between 800 to 1,500  words is ideal as long as you break up the text with bullets, images, catchy headlines, and short paragraphs.

If you want to create a lengthy newsletter, consider going the print magalog route or create an email newsletter where the reader needs to click links to read the full length of the article on a web page.

Who can I send an email newsletter to?

The only people who should receive your email newsletters are those who opted-in. Most all e-newsletter sending services have strict policies on spam and require you to confirm your recipients agreed to receive your mail. If you can’t prove this, then you might consider going the print newsletter route to start. Encourage e-mail newsletter sign-up on your website and by offering incentives to those who do.

When is the best time to send a newsletter?

Timing for print newsletters is easier to gauge than e-newsletters. With print, simply send the newsletter so that the information is timely and relevant. Avoid sending newsletters during your clients’ busy times or during holidays.

As for e-newsletters, many experts have studied the best times to send an email newsletter and found that Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday early in the morning or early in the afternoon are best. However, the best advice anyone can give you is to test your send times and see what works best for you.

You test your email sends by segmenting your email contact list, and then sending each segmented group the email at different times. Which group had the highest open rate? Click-through rate?


Sara Lancaster

About Sara Lancaster

Sara is The Condiment Marketing Co.’s founder and creative director. She oversees client relationships, strategic marketing plans, as well as a bit of copywriting and social media management.