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"How To Start Your Own Electronic Newsletter"

By Chris Small

Words From the Publisher:  Today's article deals with starting your own E-zine. If you don't already have one, this is for you. If you do have one but are struggling to get and keep subscribers, you should find some good advice here too. 

Ezines and newsletters are
very effective methods of communicating regularly with your visitors/prospects/customers.  They are crucial to any successful web marketing campaign. Virtually all of the "successful" marketers use a newsletter or ezine to stay in touch with their visitors.

Here's how you should start:

Find a subject that you personally have some knowledge in (or at least a strong interest) and that would be appealing to large numbers of people. Generally it should be related to the theme of your web site and/or what you are selling.

Determine how you will present the information. This can take the form of a single tip every issue or it can become a full blown magazine or newspaper type of publication with multiple articles, interviews, product reviews, related news stories, etc.. Initially simple is definitely better. I have seen some very successful ezines that simply send out a joke or inspiring quote every day.

You will also want to find several sources of information for your newsletter. Ideally it's best if you can write your own material, but many marketers choose to reprint other peoples works. This is fine and can save you a lot of time. Just make sure that you receive the original authors permission before publishing it. Most writers will be glad to let you use their material in exchange for a simple byline at the bottom of the article.

NEVER promote somebody else's work as your own! That is a sure fire way to develop negative publicity for you and your ezine. We all know about the power of "word-of-mouth" advertising. Well it can work in reverse twice as fast.

Eventually you will want to get your own list server to deliver the newsletter and administer the list. There are several Free ones available, but they do come with a caveat. Most of them place THEIR advertising in YOUR newsletter, or add YOUR subscribers to THEIR ezine list.  For some marketers, that is a small tradeoff. Most serious web marketers will find this very distasteful and choose to buy, rent or lease their own. Contact me if you need help finding a good list server.

While you are starting out and don't have a large subscriber base it is easy enough to use your email program. You will have to set it up so that your subscribers names (and addresses) are not visible to the other recipients. This could be as simple as using the BCC (Blind Carbon Copy) feature. It will get rather cumbersome after more than 30 to 50 subscribers though and you will find yourself pining for a proper listserver.

Now for the big question: How do I get subscribers to sign up for my ezine?

Certainly the first place to start is at your own web site. The top left corner of the main page is an ideal place to put a link to your sign up page or a sign up form. This spot is best because the eyes of your readers are already trained to start looking there. Another excellent spot is the lower right corner of the page.

Depending on the type of site that you have, it would not be unreasonable to put a link or small sign up form on every page. Some marketers even set pop up subscription windows to jump out at the visitor when they enter the main page. This might be annoying to some, but they claim that their sign up rate is at least twice what they were experiencing before installing them.

You may also want to advertise you ezine on other peoples websites and in their ezines. Some will demand payment, but most will engage in an ad swap with you. Bear in mind though that if the person you are trying to swap with has a subscriber base of several thousand and you only have a few hundred they may not be inclined to do a one for one swap. You might have to sweeten the offer with several ads in your ezine for one ad in theirs. This is still a great way for you to get some exposure that doesn't cost you a cent.

There are of course the Free Classified ad sites and many Free For All (FFA) pages.  While they are quickly losing their appeal, people still do use them and respond to good offers. Some ezine publishers will initially offer a free ad to entice subscribers. This could be another good way for you to get the word out about your own ezine.

Most of the readers of this article are on the Internet because of the opportunity that it offers to reach thousands - and potentially millions - of people. Give yourself a boost in the right direction and start your own ezine. A year ago one web site owner exhorted me to do it and I am so glad that I did. It was the wisest marketing decision that I have made so far. A few weeks ago I sent him a thank you note.

Chris Small is a cyber entrepreneur and host of several
successful websites. If you would like to read more articles
like this by Chris go to www.worlddealcenter.com/reports


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