Archive for September, 2010

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Newsletters – Print or Email?

As the economic recovery shuffles along – and “shuffle” seems to be the right word, companies and small business owners continue to look for ways to promote their products, services and brands in the most cost-efficient way.

And most understand that a newsletter can be one of the most powerful ways to build lasting relationships with their customers. But which deliver medium should they choose, email or print?

Both varieties share informative articles, customer resources, special offers and discounts. And either format requires a writer, a designer (at least once), and a mailing list.

E-newsletters have become so popular because they are a lot cheaper to distribute; can be sent more frequently; and can reflect up-to-the-minute price changes or offers. But they can be easier to ignore or delete, or blocked all together. And you also need to have – or begin building – an email list to distribute the piece. Sending unwanted spam to recipients is not acceptable to most legitimate businesses.

Print newsletters on the other hand usually have higher readership numbers and response rates, if only because the recipient is forced to view the publication, at least for a moment (perhaps on the way from the mailbox to the trashcan!) But this is often more than offset by their much higher costs.

Printing a newsletter means spending money on paper stock, the printing process itself, handling costs and finally the expense of postage. You may also need to purchase or “rent” a mailing list, an additional expense.

And all but the most simple of printed newsletters still need the attention of a graphic designer to “lay out” the copy and artwork, and get the document prepared and sent to the printer. Most e-newsletters can be sent without this expense.

But some publications are simply better as physical pieces of collateral. Newsletters that also serve as catalogs are one good example. And a printed publication has more “weight” in the minds of some consumers, especially for brand new businesses.

So which is better? For some companies, the answer is both. Since the delivery mediums are so different and have their own unique virtues, sending a periodic e-newsletter, along with a less frequent printed newsletter, can be a good strategy. And some publications simple work better as a more permanent, and portable, reference material, such as a yearly catalog.

When you harness the power of both e-mail and print newsletters in tandem, you can boost brand recognition, and revenues.

Need help writing your next print or email newsletter? Or maybe need some assistance in developing a brand new publication? Give us a call or send us an email and we’ll be happy to discuss your options.

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Content Curation

Content curation is the process of reviewing and filtering articles and blog posts from across the web.

It’s NOT the same as copying other people’s blog posts and placing them directly on your site, though there are websites that do this quite successfully.

Anytime you share an interesting article on your Facebook account, or retweet a good post on Twitter, you’re curating content.

And sharing content in this way can also helps you maintain your publishing schedule. Because anyone who has ever been responsible for regular web content or blog posts can attest to the fact that sometimes, other things just get in the way! (I know that’s true for me, for SURE)

Sharing content helps shift the burden of blogging or tweeting to someone else. Once you have access to a great piece of content from another blogger, it becomes easy to write a quick opinion of your own.  Now you have a new blog post of original content, built on top of a big idea or concept that will be interesting to your audience.

And not only does this help you share the best ideas with your network, it also helps keep you “in the know” on important developments and trends in your industry. A Win-Win for everyone.

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