Putting out a newsletter is kind of like flossing your teeth.You know you should, but it sure is easy to put off. I'm hoping these six reasons will motivate you to give it a try. You'll find that once you make the commitment, it's really not all that hard to do.
1 - It Benefits Other People
The best reason to email out a newsletter (or ezine as they are sometimes called) is because it's good for your customer or client. As you know, customers are looking for benefits for themselves, and a new batch of knowledge focused on their needs is just such a benefit.
Anything you do that helps out a client will eventually benefit you as well.
2 - It Adds Value to Your Website
Once you send out your article, be sure to add it to your website as well. Now you're not just helping out your subscribers, but anyone who visits your site. Long before a person is ready to buy, they will be looking for information. As you continue to add articles to your site, you are creating a more valuable resource. Yours will be a site a person will bookmark and return to, a site they will recommend to their friends and colleagues.
3 - Become Recognized as an Expert in Your Field
It's one thing to claim expertise and experience on your home page, and quite another to have a catalog of real-life examples on your site. Your articles can demonstrate how you've solved a problem, reveal the latest trends in your industry, show readers how to overcome an obstacle, or suggest a new product or service that can save them time and money.
As your log of articles grows, the depth of your knowledge will be more fully revealed. You won't have to tell anyone you're an expert; your articles will shout it out for you.
4 - Other People Will Send Their Subscribers to You
Besides all the benefits you gain by sending your ezine to your subscriber list and posting it on your website, there's another huge opportunity you should take advantage of.
It may seem hard to believe, but there's a large number of people who mail out a regular ezine, but don't write the articles themselves. They simply go to various websites that post articles in their fields, written by people just like you. These editors just pick and choose the ones they want to publish. This is where you come in.
You can post your articles in these announcement websites and if they're well written and on a topic someone needs, your articles can gain a wide readership through other people's subscriber lists. Just make sure you include a link to your website and an offer to join your list at the bottom. Part of the agreement is, if they get to use your article, they are expected to keep your resource box intact. After you see a variety of ways people word their resource boxes you can create one that works for you.
Here are a few places to start submitting your articles. Be sure to follow their submission policies closely. You can find additional resources by doing a search for "free articles" plus your topic.
As an important bonus, many of these sites will put your article into their archives, giving you another permanent link to your site. Quality links coming into your website can help boost your ranking in the search engines.
5 - Provide Additional Gateways to Your Site
Each of your articles will have a different set of keywords in the title tag, your headlines and throughout your text. As the search engines add these new pages to their databases, you will find visitors arriving in the middle of your site instead of your home page. This is a very good thing since it means that you can attract visitors with a wider array of search terms. Just make sure each article has links to the rest of your site.
At some point you'll want to have a page that has a brief description of each article and a text link to each one. Having a text link instead of a graphic one is important because it will help the search engines find all your articles. They aren't able to follow graphical links. For an example of how to set up such a page, you can see how I did it on my site's Web Design Tips page (http://www.zmoon.com/webdesigntips.html).
6 - Keep Your Company Name Fresh in Your Subscribers' Minds
As you build up your mailing list, the majority of subscribers will be people who haven't bought your products or services. They signed up just to get good information, but if you've been sending them useful articles once or twice a month, they're more likely to think of you when they're ready to buy. As they learn to trust your judgment, they're also more likely to forward your articles to their friends and colleagues, which will tend to expand your list over time. You'll have extra credibility from these recommendations. It's even better than being found in the search engines.
I hope I've convinced you to give some serious thought to starting your own ezine. The effort you put in will pay off in greater exposure for your web site and eventually in more business for you as well. Next time I'll have some suggestions on exactly how to get started. You can do it!
Les Goss is the president of ZebraMoon Design, Inc., where he educates his business clients as he builds their web sites. To subscribe to the free email newsletter or to find out more about how they can serve you, please come to: http://www.zmoon.com/.
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