3 Things to Think About When Combining Newsletters and Social Media

By Debra Eckerling 

Newsletters are used for many reasons – to keep your audience informed, showcase expertise, expand reach, increase sales, and generally remind your audience that you exist.

However, for even better results, incorporate newsletters into your content plan for social media. Build your email list, create good content and promotions for your readers, and blast your newsletter out on all your social channels. Most people use LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, though Pinterest, YouTube, Tumblr, and Google+ are also great social media channels for sharing and teasing your newsletter.

Newsletters can be sent out in any appropriate frequency: daily (for news sources), weekly, monthly, quarterly, annually – it just depends on your industry, information level, or niche. Content includes news and industry information, contests and coupons, people profiles and feature articles, events, polls, community feedback, and more.

Here are 3 things to think about when using social media in tandem with your newsletter.

1. Be Thoughtful. “Newsletter execution has changed, but the basic ideas behind them haven’t,” says Doug Fenichel, APR, President, In-House Public Relations. “Think about your target audience and how they’re going to best receive the information. Be regular and predictable in your scheduling and credible in your stories. Your newsletter should be part of a larger communications strategy and should carry key messages for that target audience. Understand the cultural impact of newsletters and pick your subjects accordingly. There should be a call to action in the stories and remember to seek feedback, which is what makes social media such a good tool for newsletters.”

2. Create Community. “Our school uses its newsletter to spread campus news, events and updates to parents, teachers, staff, potential family applicants and anyone else associated with the Gillispie community,” says Brittany Wiczek, Marketing and Communications Lead at The Gillispie School in La Jolla, CA. “We find that our newsletter is an effective communication piece, and a great way to spread our content out to a larger audience. … We use our newsletter to promote our social media pages, as we find that getting subscribers to our newsletter is actually easier than getting followers and likes on our social media pages. Each newsletter we send out has links to our social media sites (in the contact area) and has “media spotlights” in the left side column that link to specific posts from our social media sites. These ‘spotlights’ bring the majority of traffic from our newsletter back to our social media pages.”

3. Cross Promote. “We’ve had our newsletter for about 11 years – it’s a huge business driver and we also use social media to promote it,” says Penny C. Sansevieri, CEO of Author Marketing Experts, Inc. and Adjunct Instructor at NYU-SCPS. “We’ll tweet out some tips from it, post tips and snippets to Facebook, and link the newsletter on Twitter and Facebook so folks can read it, sample it and decide if they want to subscribe. I always believe a newsletter is one of the best ways to promote – people will miss a tweet or a Facebook/LinkedIn update, but a newsletter sits in your inbox, waiting to be read!”

Newsletters are great vehicles for showing your readers what’s going on in your world. Use your personality and expertise to inform your audience, and get your message out.