Know the Content Code

Well, you’ve done it. You’ve made the decision to start mailing a newsletter. You listened time and again as professionals in your field sang the praises of direct mail, explaining how their custom newsletter increased their retention and helped them stay top of mind, and you finally jumped on board. Congratulations!

Now what? How will you engage your readers in building relationships? How will you use every inch of space in your newsletter to its maximum potential?

The answer is — and will always be — high quality, VALUABLE content.


As you get started brainstorming your brand-new content, you’ll be surprised by how many great ideas you have for your covers and inside newsletter sections. Remember to keep up the momentum as the months go on.

You will more than likely lose the attention of your readers if you start slacking on these crucial content features:

Your Newsletter Content Needs a Personal Cover

I can’t stress this enough. If people do business with people they know and like, which they absolutely do, your personal cover is the No. 1 most important element of your newsletter and should not be taken for granted. This is your space to show your readership how human you are, how relatable you are, and how you genuinely care about keeping in touch. Remember, you are never as boring as you think. There is always something you can share about your life outside of work, and your customers and prospects will love getting to know you.

Keep it light.

When it comes to the other sections of your newsletter, remember there is a time and a place for shop-talk, and it’s not here. Your readers will be bored, or even annoyed, if you can’t relate to them. Dentists, swap your detailed explanations of fillings with a human interest piece or something about family or personal growth. Your newsletter can still serve its purpose without making people fearful of gum disease. Here are some great general topic ideas for lighter articles that are great for added pass-around value.

  • Vacation/travel
  • Food and recipes
  • Human interest
  • Personal growth
  • Pet articles
  • Technology
  • Time managementwrite original, persuasive, natural, useful, informative content

Never underestimate the power of a lighthearted “fun corner” where you can include reader-interactive pieces and entertainment. Crowd-pleasers include …

  • Sudoku puzzles
  • Crosswords
  • Memes
  • Contests
  • Jokes
  • Top-ten lists
  • Funny holidays

Share Your Recipe for Success

Use your articles to share value with your readers. As you weave your personal stories into each edition, think about what kind of value you can deliver. How can you help your readers be successful too? What insight are they missing out on? What do they need to know now? If you can share content that is actionable and effective, you show that you are not just entertaining for the sake of entertaining, but you are an expert, letting them in on your secrets to success.

Remember, what’s interesting to you may not be interesting to your demographic.

Before building your content arsenal, remember to think of the demographic you are trying to reach. Blue-collar workers will not necessarily have the same interests as business owners. And a CEO will not enjoy the same content you write for mothers of small children (unless that CEO happens to be a mom). Do you know who you’re writing for?

Pro Tip: Create avatar profiles for your target demographics. Include each avatar’s occupation, gender, age range, hobbies, and a list of resources that might interest them (i.e. magazines or popular blogs they subscribe to). Once you can put a face on your audience, the content you generate will be more valuable.

Already have a newsletter? Does your content follow the content code? What’s the most popular article you’ve published? What made it so successful? Share your stories with us below! (And if you haven’t taken the leap and invested in client relationships, give us a call to chat about the role newsletters can play in your business growth.)


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