How To Take The Pain Out Of Publishing Your Ezine
99% of all ezines are not "being a reporter" on current events; that is the first and most important thing to understand. This means that you don't have to be publishing your ezine one day before the "deadline" of when you've decided you'll be sending it out, and going into a great tizzy over the whole thing. Most ezines are highly topical and related to a business, a market or futher products and services of one kind or the other, and their function is to keep customers in touch, as well as to convert interested parties into customers. This gives you a constantly "rolling" audience of old hands and newbies, and an ebb and flow of subscribers and unsubscribers. There are certain evergreen topics in any context that you can always write about, and write about over and over again, from many different angles, and it will always be interesting and well received. This is the key to successful ezine publishing.
It's not so much about "news", but about enjoyable content - and that can be as old as the hills, including a 2000 year old quote from a Roman senator; if it is interesting to your target audience, it is applicable, and it can become an ezine article. With that understood, the production of an ezine can change, and it can become far more manageable. Tip 1: Prepare a number of issues in advance so you have at least 3-6 in hand and ready to go, all the time. That's what columnists do so they don't go mad and explode from the stress of constantly trying to beat deadlines. Tip 2: An ezine does NOT need more than ONE GOOD ARTICLE, tip, suggestion etc.
In this day and age, people do not sit around with email as though it was the Times Magazine. Too long and too much content, and they'll put it aside for later, and later never comes as you well know with your own email. Tip 3: As you're the publisher, you can have a flexible schedule. Base your ezine on something manageable, weekly, bi-monthly, but be flexible within this to suit yourself and take things like public holidays, major events in your market like the SuperBowl or the Olympics into consideration. Tip 4: You can have a "news space" in your ezine which you can fill with news, or leave blank and just send out the prepared column you have already waiting to go. You don't always have to have some amazing news item in every newsletter, that's way too stressful (and probably even too much for your audience!) Tip 5: Make it as easy for yourself as possible! Don't go mad over mail merging or complicated html formatting if it's a challenge - it isn't necessary. There are people having fantastically successful newslists and ezines who stalwardly send in plain text, without any bells and whistles, but the content is good and it's appreciated all around. Tip 6: Remember your floating audience and go back to basics every third newsletter. Advanced subscribers never mind going over the basics again, and it's essential for the new subscribers. So this may be YOUR ezine No.
266, but how many people were even there for the first 100? Tip 7: If you are planning to have a commercial newsletter that carries advertisements, include advertisements right from the start and as a matter of course. It is the easiest thing to add a short advertisement for a book on http://Amazon.com with your own affiliate link in the "ad space section", even if you have only 3 subscribers at present. Then, it is there, and later, when you have 3 million subscribers, you can rent out a space that already exists without disturbing your recipients or changing the format. Tip 8: On that topic, pick a format and stick with it. That makes it MUCH easier to prepare and send newsletters on a regular basis and takes the stress right out of it. Something like: Personal greeting - Advert - Article - News - Advert, for example. That way, you just need to fill in each one and that's easy. Customers also LIKE a format they can trust and it relieves THEIR stress, just the same. To sum up: Make it easy for yourself with pre-prepared, ready to go, ready formatted ezines that just need a "season's greeting" or a short topical comment to make them right up to date.
Have a number of them in hand so you can take a holiday when you want to; keep it short and sweet and stick to a simple formula. That's what the professionals do and if you do the same, you'll find having a top quality, interesting email newsletter or ezine that goes out on time, a breeze. (c) Silvia Hartmann 2006.
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