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Baiting Your Business Hook

By: Heather Reimer

Heather Reimer was a journalist for over 15 years and is now the Creative Copy Editor for, a leading edge affiliate management and marketing company.

iGlobalMedia works with over 30,000 webmasters and promotes some of the best gaming sites online. You can see their newsletter at

E-zine.  Newsletter.  Opt-in mail.  Whatever you want to call it, everybody is trying to convince you that your online business needs it. And maybe you're wondering if it's the right bait to reel in a major haul of big spenders.  The quick answer is... maybe!

Let's look at what a newsletter has to offer:
  • A low-cost forum to promote your product or service.
  • A means to generate goodwill by offering something for nothing (information, promotional gifts, etc.)
  • And when your e-zine is well established, a way to make extra revenue by selling ad space.
So, with all that going for it, what's to lose?  Quite simply, your time.  A quality newsletter requires a lot of elbow grease administered regularly.  Anything less than an interesting, easy-to-read newsletter won't be read... and then you really will have wasted your time!

So... here are four ingredients you absolutely must have to create and keep up an e-zine that sells:
  1. Focus.  What's the point of the publication?  Who are your readers?  What action do you want them to take?  Your content must answer to these criteria at all times.

  2. Good content.  A blatant advertisement will be tuned out and deleted with a swift click of the mouse.  If you don't have the time to write interesting, relevant material yourself, find someone who does or visit a website that offers free content.

  3. A mailing list.  Build up your opt-in list by offering to send your website visitors a free e-zine, full of information they simply cannot do without!  All they have to do is enter their e-mail address.  Invite them to sign up their friends.  If you sweeten the pot with a free gift, your list will grow much faster.

  4. Automation.  When your mailing list tops a few hundred, it's time to automate or you'll waste countless hours manually adding and removing names.
Now you're ready to concentrate on the magic words, the bait that hooks your readers.  Ad executives follow a few basic rules when casting out their lines: 
  1. First, The Big Opening.  Start with a powerful statement that grabs attention and offers a benefit.  For example, "Catch Bigger Fish with Better Bait."   Short and punchy.

  2. Answer the question "What's in it for me?" Explain what your product can do and why it's better than anyone else's.   "Tired of reeling in minnows and small fry?  Better Bait guarantees a better catch."

  3. Prove it.  This is where you brag about your satisfaction guarantee.  Or your customer testimonials.  And maybe a word or two about your own credentials.  Convince those fish to snap at your juicy bait.  For example, "Used by fishers who demand the best, like Ted Fisher of TV's The Fishin' Hole."

  4. Finally, invite them to bite.  It may be clear as a mountain stream to you, but your readers need a direct call to action.  "Insert your e-mail address here and click on submit.  The Better Bait newsletter will arrive at your inbox a few minutes later, full of useful tips to help you reel in the big one!"
There!  You've done it.  But don't put away your tackle box just yet.  Any ad campaign worth its salt monitors its sales progress religiously.  Keep tabs on the catch your e-zine is hauling inů in other words, the number of sales you make as a direct result. Only then will you know if it's time to fish or cut bait!

© Copyright 2000, Heather Reimer

Other Articles by Heather Reimer

The author assumes full responsibility for the contents of this article and retains all of its property rights. MarcommWise publishes it here with the permission of the author. MarcomWise assumes no responsibility for the article's contents.


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