If you own a website or an online business, there are countless ways to market yourself and drive traffic to the site. You can use inbound links and other SEO approaches to boost your PageRank. You can create a Facebook page and try to draw business through social networking means. You can put paid advertisements on websites that your target demographic may frequent. The list goes on.
Of the myriad options available to you, there’s one that repeatedly goes overlooked: creating a digital newsletter or bulletin that can be sent out to your mailing list on a monthly or bi-monthly basis. This newsletter is less an overt advertisement for your business and more of an informative, industry-specific publication. It should contain news, advice, and analysis related to your area of focus. If the website you’re promoting is a blog, a bulletin could merely be a collection of new blog posts put into newspaper form.
Certainly, making a newsletter can be a time-intensive undertaking since it requires that you write new content and then organize it into newsletter form. But, at the same time, there are many benefits that can be gained from your efforts. Here are a few of the key ones:
While your newsletter may not be an overt advertisement for your business, at least as far as the articles are concerned, it should certainly include promotions, giveaways, deals, sales, and anything else of note that is going on with your business. This amounts to a highly effective form of free advertising; although an email containing only promotional material may be perceived poorly by consumers, a mailing that includes an informative newsletter costs you just as little to send and is potentially much more impactful.
Establish Loyal Customers
If you did choose to write a bulletin for your site, you would likely disseminate it via email. More specifically, you would probably send it to any consumer who has previously provided their contact information. While some of these people would probably opt out of receiving your newsletter, there’s a good chance that a core group would read it cover to cover every month. This latter type of consumer has a strong interest in your industry and is likely to regularly frequent sites and businesses such as yours. By sending them a newsletter attached to your name, you can turn this interest into loyalty.
It is often difficult for small businesses – especially those based solely online – to initially convince prospective customers of their legitimacy, credibility, and professionalism. This is where a newsletter can be especially beneficial. By sending out a well-designed, well-written newsletter on a regular basis, the consumer will be more easily convinced of your professionalism and expertise. Although it only takes a day of work and a program like Microsoft Publisher to make a newsletter, a reader can be easily led to believe that you run a high-powered, sophisticated operation.
While putting out a bulletin is not the easier way to market your business, it nonetheless remains one of the cheapest – and, when it comes to creating loyal customers, it is also one of the most effective. If you’re looking to cheaply drive more traffic to your site, it’s something you might want to consider.