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Writing A Newsletter

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 (This article was originally published at Suite 101.com.  It appears with their permission as per the contributing writer agreement)

Newsletters are a great way to keep your name in front of your public. It keeps them up to date on what you are doing, where you will be performing and any exciting band news. Newsletters can be of two types: electronic or print.

Electronic Newsletters

If you are familiar with the Internet, Web and e-mail, you might want to create an electronic newsletter. This is a way to get your news out there on a tight budget. With the e-mail, postage is free. It also saves on printer paper and ink or the cost of taking it to a printer. With an electronic newsletter, you can freely use pictures and links to other sites and articles of interest on the Web.

You can create an electronic newsletter using a word processor that allows you to export to HTML or Web page editor. If you arenít comfortable with these software packages, just write your newsletter as a friendly e-mail and attach photographs if you want to include them. Remember whether you are creating a Web page to be sent or attaching photographs to e-mail, you want to keep the graphic files small in size. No one wants to open their e-mail and have huge files to download. Another thing you can do is to place the newsletter Web page on your Web site or in any space you have on other sites such as MP3 and just e-mail a link to the newsletter rather than sending the full page. If itís on your Web site and you have access to statistics, you can then see how many times that web page is viewed.

Print Newsletters

You can also create print newsletters for regular postal mail. If you feel comfortable with word processors, you can create a very professional looking newsletter and either print it yourself or take it to the printers. Keep in mind that color copying will be more expensive. You can choose to spend the extra money or use graphics and photographs that look great in black and white. As I mentioned in my previous article on keeping in touch with your fans, you should have your mailing list up-to-date so that you can quickly compile a list of names and addresses of your fans and contacts.

Writing Your Newsletter

The purpose of a newsletter is to make people aware of who you are and what you are doing. In your newsletter always include important news such as the dates and places where you are playing, new CD and song release information, record deals, and recent reviews. In addition to these news items you might include photographs of the band and fans from recent shows. This is always a winner with fans. Other items to consider for your newsletter:

  • Funny stories from the road (particularly travel horror stories)

  • Stories about people youíve met

  • Fan letters or any fan e-mail youíve received

  • New releases of MP3 files for download

  • New places that you are listed or reviewed on the Web

  • Web sites or print articles that might be of interest to your fans

  • Exciting CD or ticket sale information such as international sales or distribution contracts
  • Radio stations where your music can be heard
  • Contests or competitions youíve entered or won
  • Status of your new CD
  • Trade shows or conferences you are attending

If you are using an electronic newsletter, you might want to include hypertext links to your MP3 files, your web site or band web page, articles and sites of reviewers, online retailers of your music, etc.

In either type of newsletter always include information on how and where to purchase your music. If you are running your own mail-order operation include a mail order form or a link to where and how fans can order your music on the Web. Try to include some sales tag line to remind people to buy your music such as "The Holidays are coming - a CD makes a great gift." Also, donít forget to include your band contact information including the booking contact.

Your newsletter should be fun for people to keep reading so think about things like contests for song titles, CD titles, band mascots, captions for photographs, etc. It will keep your fans involved and let you know whoís reading your newsletter.

 

Questions or comments? please feel free to contact the writer at: wbeck@eigg.com