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Writing a newsletter and producing consistent, useful content is a lot of work, but it’s also really fun and rewarding.  And I believe writing a newsletter goes a long way in taking a business to the next level.  I’ve committed to a weekly newsletter and am doing my best to provide you with useful tips and tricks gleaned from our family of amazing Femworkers.  (and yes, the newsletter and content creation is getting easier every week, for those of you wondering!)

After publishing my first newsletter I asked our Femworking members for feedback.  As usual, they gave me so much useful information.  I’ve broken it down here in my usual style, a series of lessons learned and tips for you so you don’t make the same mistakes I did:

1) Marcia of Magnificuffs let me know that my e-mail addressed her as Magnificuffs instead of Marcia.  So if you’re using merge tags to address your subscribers by their first name, be sure to comb through it when you’re first starting and periodically after to look for possible subscriber name issues.

2) I had used “I” in the first paragraphs of the newsletter and then “we” and “our” afterwards.  I have always struggled with the “I” “we” “our” thing, since I had a cofounder when I started, then was by myself, and have worked with a few people on certain projects since then (like the conference – hi Nicole!), and because many times Femworking feels like the collective whole of my peers, and I forget that I’m the leader.  When communicating, try to be consistent in your use of “I” “we” and “our.”    Don’t forget to write a rough draft, let it sit for a while, review, and revise as necessary, checking for consistent use of tone, voice, and pronouns.

3) Heba Saleh of EatLuv pointed out that I needed an enticing subject line, since the biggest challenge is getting readers to open the e-mail.  This is HUGE, and I had heard of this before and then didn’t implement it in my own newsletter.  Duh!

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4) She also noted that I had a video included in that post but I didn’t really highlight that it was a video.  So, the next time I made a video I took a screen shot of the video, wrote the title on the screen shot, and added a play button graphic.  Then I inserted the image into my newsletter so that when readers clicked on it it took them to my blog post, where the video was embedded and they could watch it!   So make your newsletter realllllly easy to understand, and use graphics to your advantage.  Let your readers know immediately that there’s a video for them to watch.  (Watch out for a blog post on how I made this graphic in early February).

5) I also got a really good suggestion to feature a Femworking member in each newsletter, since it would be interesting for other people to read and then would incentivize the person featured to share the newsletter with their friends and family, which is free advertising.  I can’t wait to incorporate this!

Here’s the positive feedback I got, so you know what people liked about the newsletter and may want to implement in your own:

-Heba said the newsletter is short and sweet with an action item, a helpful tip (Tweepi), and ways to sign up for Femworking.  

-Lisa McLaughlin of Palm Tees Clothing said it looked great and that she loved that I had different sections.  She said the action items were awesome and that the fact that it was lighthearted and not too wordy ensured people would probably actually read it.  She thought it was good that I had my picture so that people could associate me with the newsletter.  (I agree with this also – Laura Roeder suggests using photos and videos to help your customers get to know you, increasing the “know, like, trust” factor.)

Do you have any tips for me or other readers?  Leave a comment letting us know what you like about the newsletters you read and what you think could be improved!