A cheesecake is nothing like a bundt cake, and an ice cream cake is nothing like a pound cake, yet they are all cakes.

The pages of a major newspaper are filled with news stories, feature stories, and editorials all of which are written differently. Yet, they are all newspaper articles.

Every newsletter article is written differently too. Regardless of whether your business sends a newsletter for informative reasons or for marketing reasons, it’s important to recognize the difference between each newsletter article style. The below descriptions explain the different flavors of newsletter articles and offer tips on how each type should be written.

Hard selling – A newsletter purely focused on marketing should include one or two hard sell newsletter articles. It’s up to you to decide whether your audience will respond to a long form or short form article, but somewhere on the email or print mailer the words “buy now” must appear.

Soft selling –  A roundabout way of pitching your service or product without saying: BUY NOW! Soft selling is an art form and requires that you appeal to the intelligence of your audience. The goal is to make them trust you and make them want to join you on the journey. Soft selling newsletter articles are typically longer than 200 words and always always always include a clear explanation of benefits.

Informative – No selling here. In an informative article, you take the same approach as traditional journalists. Provide facts, quotes, data, and sources in an informative newsletter article.

Community building – Make your readers feel part of the larger group with a community building article such as a collage of photos from a recent event or a feature story about one of your clients.  The article must focus on the human factor.

Tips and advice – You have an expertise. Prove it by providing valuable, unique advice. A list can go a long way and so can a case study.

Nuggets – Not a technical term, of course, but a nugget article provides a small bit of information with a specific purpose. For example, a nugget could send your readers to a new page on your website or offer an interesting piece of trivia. Nuggets contain only a few sentences and, therefore, require an incredibly catchy headline.

Events and announcements – If your newsletter readers belong to an organization or a particular industry, relevant events and announcements make great newsletter filler. Announcements could range from new executive leadership to a call for proposals to a new address for your business. This newsletter article is short and provides a way for the readers to participate (provide a link, phone number, email address, etc.).

ps – Image credit goes to Creative Commons The Dabble.

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.