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Creating Newsletters - A Step by Step Guide on
How to Start a Newsletter

  

More and more people turn to creating newsletters each day because newsletters are the best way to prove your expertise and win trust.

Here's a step by step guide on how to create your own successful and highly profitable newsletter...

1. Choose a Topic for Your Newsletter

Since you're going to write your newsletter on a regular basis, it's essential that you choose a topic you're passionate about. Otherwise, it will be too boring and difficult for you to keep writing a valuable, informative article every day, week, or month.

I speaking from personal experience. I once started a newsletter about a topic I didn't enjoy writing about - because I knew it was a profitable niche.

I spent a lot of time and energy choosing a name, designing a professional cover, creating an HTML template, and so on. But after writing a couple of issues, I discovered I couldn't continue doing that for a long time. So I stopped publishing my newsletter.

If I knew this secrets earlier, I wouldn't lose that much of my time. But now you know it. I shared this secret with you so that you could save yourself a lot of time by avoiding the mistake I made.

Choose a topic you're passionate about, so you will have fun writing each of your issues. And be creative. Your newsletter doesn't have to be about making money online.

Here are the steps you should take for finding a good, creative topic for your newsletter...

Step 1: Pick a pen and a piece of paper and go somewhere that nobody disturbs you. Brainstorm as many ideas as you can think of. Write down everything your mind comes across - even the craziest ideas. Because they will act like a path to more creative ideas.

Step 2: Look at your list and choose the topics you enjoy writing about - no matter whether you think they're profitable or not.

Step 3: Cross out the ideas you think you don't have enough information to write informative articles about on a regular basis.

Step 4: Finally, pick the topic you think will be more profitable. Yes, I know you want to make money from your newsletter, but believe me, it's the last thing you should consider while choosing a topic.

Congratulations! Now you have a great topic idea for your newsletter.

2. Study the Competition

Your competitors have spent some time - maybe even years - to get to where they are right now. They have also spent a lot of money testing different techniques and strategies. Now you can learn from them.

By studying their website, newsletter, sales letter, etc. you will learn many proven techniques you can use to start from where they are right now, and get better and faster results.

Another important benefit of studying your competition, is that you can learn from their current mistakes. So you can avoid them in your own newsletter to create the best newsletter in your field.

3. Choose a Name

The name of your newsletter will have a big effect on its readership. I've written a complete article about newsletter names. In that article, you will get creative ideas and helpful tips to choose a title for your newsletter.

4. Choose a Format

You can publish your newsletter in plain text, HTML, or PDF. Many people still prefer plain text because it's simple and clean. Some others like HTML because it lets you use images, colors, different font faces, and so on in it.

I can't tell you which format is the best for you because it all depends on your readers. Many newsletter writers publish their newsletter in both plain text and HTML. They send their newsletter in plain text and link to the HTML version of it online. I personally think this method is the best.

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5. Design Your Newsletter Template

If you publish your ezine in plain text, creating a template is going to be easy. But as for HTML and PDF templates it will take some work. You can create your own template or use one of the free HTML templates available online.

I've created some free newsletter templates in plain text, HTML and PDF. Feel free to use them for your newsletter or give them away on your website.

6. Write Your First 3 Issues

Before starting you newsletter, make sure you write the first 3 issues. This helps you find out if you really can continue publishing it. You may not have the necessary information or interest to write an informative article about the chosen topic every day, week or month.

If after writing 3 issues, you find out you have to struggle to write each article, I really recommend you rethink about the topic you've chosen.

Are you sure you ca keep writing informative articles about it week after week, or month after month? Imagine how much time this technique will save you!

You can simply subscribe to the free Newsletter Marketing Tips newsletter to learn powerful tips and ideas to easily find a lot of killer article ideas that your readers will love.

  

7. Find a Good Autoresponder

An autoresponder helps you...

  • Process your "subscribes" and "unsubscribes" in real-time
  • Send personalized messages
  • Send follow up messages
  • Manage your mailing lists
  • And much more...

You can use an autoresponder service or software. If you use a software program, you need to keep your computer turned on all the time to be able to send follow up messages automatically. Well, this will be difficult if you work from home.

However, by using an autoresponder service, you won't have this problem. So I recommend using an autoresponder service if you don't want keep your computer on 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

There are so many autoresponder services out there that it's very easy to get confused. How do you know which one is the best? Which one provides a faster and more reliable service plus a good customer support?

Recently, I researched a lot and read different autoresponders reviews online. I also asked successful newsletter publishers about the service they used. After all the research, I've found out Aweber is the best autoresponder service available these days.

They provide unlimited autoresponders, unlimited follow up messages, unlimited email campaigns, unlimited free phone support, advanced personalization features, complete ad tracking features, and lots of other great features that you'll get at a reasonable price.

You may read my honest review about it, or go directly to the Aweber website to see for yourself what I'm talking about when I say they're the best! :)

8. Start Promoting Your Newsletter

Now that everything is ready, it's time to let the world know about your newsletter! Here are some ideas...

  • Submit your ezine to ezine directories
  • Submit your articles to article directories and promote your ezine in your resource box
  • Put a signup form on every page of your site
  • Write a short copy about your newsletter and link to your signup page in your email signature
  • Use a popup window on your home page
  • In each issue, ask your readers to send your newsletter to their friends
  • Link to your newsletter signup page in your sigfile in forums
  • Buy an ad space in a related (but not competing) newsletter
  • Write a free informative ebook and promote your newsletter in it

9. Send out Your First Issue

Congratulations! After all the work, it's time for you to finally start publishing your newsletter.

But wait... There are some important things to check before sending your message to your list...

  • Check your message for spelling and grammatical mistakes, because nothing ruins your credibility more than a message full of spelling errors.

  • Create a test email address in major free email providers like Yahoo, Hotmail, AOL and so on. Then send your every issue as a test message to those addresses to make sure it looks the way it should. Nothing is worst than sending a message to your entire list to find out later there was a error in showing the message and some of your readers couldn't see it correctly. What will your readers think of you?

  • Spam check your message to make sure spam filters will not eat it. You might have used some certain words and phrases that makes spam filters think your legitimate newsletter is spam. So make sure you use this free spam check tool for every message you want to send out to your list.

10. Survey Your Subscribers

No one can tell you how to improve your newsletter better than your own subscribers. And the good news is that they are willing to help you for free! You just need to ask them some questions and they will answer.

Very simple... yet very powerful. I always wonder why many people overlook this technique. They will give you creative ideas that make you ask yourself, "Why didn't I think of that?"

Final Thoughts

One final suggestion I have for you, is that you write a detailed plan before starting your newsletter. It will really help you know what you want and make it much easier to get it. Here are some question ideas to answer in your plan...

  • Why do you want to start your own newsletter? (e.g. To promote your own products, sell affiliate products, follow up with your current customers, prove your expertise, etc.)
  • How exactly are you going to make money from it? (e.g. By selling your products, promoting affiliate products, selling ad space in your newsletter, etc.)
  • What makes your newsletter unique? What's your brand? (e.g. Providing unique quality content, having a friendly voice, offering discounts and coupons to your subscribers, etc.)
  • How often are you going to publish your newsletter? (e.g. daily, weekly, monthly, etc.)
  • Will you publish guest articles or just your own articles?

I shared 10 important steps for starting your own successful newsletter. I hope you have found them helpful.

Wish you the best of luck on starting your newsletter! :)


Ladan Lashkari

 
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