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Janet Roberts

Flash! Email Newsletters are a Good Idea!
By Janet Roberts

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Lately, it seems that every marketing writer, online as well as for traditional media, has discovered that email newsletters are an inexpensive, high-return way to find, keep and sell to customers. Wow! What a concept!

Close on the heels of this astonishing revelation come the stories about how to start your own newsletter. Not all of them are worth the time spent reading them. Some do stand out for the complete information and understandable explanations, though.

If you're still looking for good packages of information that cut through the breathless hype and will help move you from concept to execution, here are three places to get started:

  • EC Tech Advisor writer Alexis Gutzman published a 12-part series for people who want to start a business-focused newsletter. If she left anything out, I don't know what it was. Her advice is on target whether you want to start an ecommerce-focused product or a noncommercial one, such as a membership-support ezine or your own forum on world events. You can find it in one of two places: title-only links in the archives here, or in Part 12, which has a sidebar listing all previous articles with brief summaries here.

  • Naturally, I can't overlook this very resource, Ezine-Tips, which will soon begin its fourth year of offering practical advice to help you create, build and promote your email newsletter. However, Ezine-Tips has been around long enough that the daily broadcasts have moved beyond the basics - how to use a sig line to build subscribers, how to do ad swaps, etc. - to more advanced fare. But thanks to the wisdom of writers who preceded me in this space, Ezine-Tips has built a great archive, an encyclopedia of ezine information. Type in a search term, and you should pull up at least five links to previous Ezine-Tips on the subject. Or, click on a category - "Promotion," "Resources," "Content," "Management" and the like - to see all the stories written on those subjects here.

  •, our own online tutorial program, has a seven-part program that gives you the basic tools to get your newsletter program in gear.

You can combine all three of these resources to help you get your ezine off the ground. Read Alexis' advice, take your questions to the archives, and use the advice on to start building your newsletter.

Ezine-Tips for March 27, 2002

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