Advertising in Your
Making Your Newsletter Pay for Itself
Part 1 of a Series
Your newsletter provides a valuable service to your
readers and is an essential tool for every information manager. It facilitates
communication between you and your readers and makes it easier to
remind your readers of rules, policies, and procedures. It is also an
excellent way to gain new customers and keep the ones you already have.
So you can clearly see the benefits of a newsletter. But there can be even more! You could have your newsletter pay
for itself. In this part one of a series on advertisements in your
newsletter, we look at obtaining advertising suitable for your newsletter.
You have several options when pursuing advertisements. Consider the
The Best Things in Life are Free
Well, at least for advertisers they are. If you decide to offer free ads
in your newsletter, consider a type of “barter” arrangement. For
example, a local pizza shop could advertise free in your newsletter in
exchange for providing pizzas for your summer party. A math tutor
could advertise in exchange for offering a free once-a-week homework “jam
session” with the school-aged children in your community. Get creative
and look for services or products that would benefit you or your readers.
Many advertisers are willing to trade services or
products for the exposure they will get in your newsletter. Many newsletter producers have several hundreds
or thousands of readers. This is appealing to
advertisers, as a newsletter has a higher rate of readership
than other types of direct mail advertising.
Show Me the Money!
What if you run into someone who wants to advertise in your newsletter,
but isn’t interested in bartering with you? Or what if you’d like to
get even more return for your newsletter advertising space? Consider
charging for the ad placement. Generally the price is based on the size of
your newsletter readership—the more readers you have, the more appealing
it is for advertisers, and the more you can charge! It may take some
trial-and-error to find the right price for ads. You will need to take
into consideration whether you or your advertiser are doing the ad
production work, how large the ad is, and how much your advertisers are
willing to pay for the exposure they will receive. We will discuss
detailed pricing considerations in a future installment of this series.
Don’t Come Knocking!
When deciding whether to include advertising in your newsletter, you may
find that you are uncomfortable soliciting advertising. Don’t worry! It
can be easy to find advertisers willing to barter or pay for the exposure
they will receive. Start simple by offering your own readers the
opportunity to advertise in your newsletter. Many newsletter producers find that
allowing readers to advertise free is a great community relations
policy. You will be providing a service to your readers and will set the
tone for future advertisements.
Once you’ve begun including advertisements in your
newsletter, you can use your newsletter itself to solicit more
advertising. Offer your newsletter to everyone, from prospective tenants
if you are an apartment community, to suppliers and vendors that come to your
company. Many people
will see that you include advertising in your newsletter. If your
newsletter is interesting and professional looking, you will find that you
begin to get requests for ad placements in your newsletter.
The key to making this work is to include a notation in
your newsletter, preferably near the ads, that states your policy for
accepting ads. In a way, this is your own advertisement, calling for more
advertisements. Be sure to include a contact number and any other
Calling All Ads!
So you’ve seen the potential for making advertising pay for your
newsletter. What if you’d like to get even more? It may be time to get
more proactive in finding advertising for your newsletter. Begin by making
a list of the restaurants, insurance agents, bookstores, cafes, hair
stylists, pet groomers, bakeries, and other establishments near you. If
your readership goes beyond your community, consider approaching
businesses that have a nationwide customer base.
Your next step is do to some telephone work. Call each
business, describe your company and your newsletter, and state simply
your advertising policies and rates. If they would like to see a sample of
your newsletter, offer to mail or drop it by. By making this personal
contact, an potential advertiser will be more inclined to consider
advertising with you. Stress the benefits of reaching a local audience and
the high rate of readership of newsletters.
You’ve done the work and now have advertisers lined up for your
newsletter. But where do you go from here? Continuing this series in our
next newsletter, we’ll tell you how to use the ads you’ve obtained,
how to put together an ad from scratch, how much to charge for ad
placement, and where to go from there!
If you want to learn more about using advertising in
your newsletter, check out the rest of this
series, as well as other informative articles.