You’re a busy small business owner and you’re strapped for time.
You know you need to communicate with your customers regularly, and you know newsletters are the best way to do this. But, how can you easily gather great content for your newsletters without spending too much time thinking about it?
Here are four things you can do to help fill your newsletters.
This isn’t as painful as it sounds. If you read my last article, five marketing tips for the time-starved business owner, you’ll already have a plan, and a calendar. Whatever your business, you can use the seasons, bank holidays and other annual events to generate content for your newsletter.
Plot out these major dates in your calendar and plan your content around them. For example, if you’re a restaurant owner, then having an offer for Valentine’s Day is a great way to draw in business. And giving your subscribers something exclusive on these types of offers will make them eager to receive your newsletter.
Keep a notebook handy
Or whatever you like to take notes with (there are lots of great free apps you can use on your smartphone for this, like Evernote). You never know when inspiration might strike and having somewhere to keep a record of your ideas means you don’t have to struggle to remember them.
Even if your ideas are for future newsletters, making a record of them will save you lots of time in the long run. Don’t forget to add them to your calendar so you have everything in one place when the time comes to write your newsletter.
A picture speaks a thousand words
Who doesn’t like a peek behind the scenes? If you keep your smartphone with you, you can take snaps, or even video, around your business that can be turned into stories your subscribers will want to read.
It’s really easy to make collages of the pictures you take too. Using a tool like PicMonkey will give you professional-looking images that will look great in your newsletter. Even better, this tool is free to use so it will only cost you your time.
Answer your customers’ questions
Keeping a list of questions you frequently get asked is a great way to generate content for your newsletter. Every business has a list of questions they get asked a lot, and you may have already turned these into FAQs for your website.
Why not focus on one question for each issue of your newsletter and provide the answer? You can even organise them by season. So, for example, in the run up to Christmas, it’s a great idea to communicate your Christmas business hours. Especially if people are buying their presents from you!
It doesn’t have to be difficult. With a little organisation and some simple tools, you’ll find inspiration for your newsletters all round you and keep your readers interested.
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Minal Patel: I’m responsible for all marketing at Constant Contact UK. I have a keen interest in technology and digital communications and love helping small businesses with their marketing – just ask my sister! As well as doing all the cool marketing stuff I get to do, I regularly wrangle with spread sheets to get the reporting we need to measure our success. It’s earned me the title ‘Queen of spread sheets’ in the office. Connect with me on Twitter: @minal2804 if you’d like to see more of my small business marketing tips.