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When you think of printed newsletters, you probably think of four-page 8.5-inch by 11-inch gazettes delivered to your readers' mailboxes. And in most cases, you'd be correct - this is the standard format employed by most newsletters. There's nothing wrong with the standard format, but it can be said that by virtue of being standard it has become expected, stale and boring. Your business should differentiate itself from the competition, and therefore it is prudent to consider publishing different newsletter formats that get immediate attention and intrigue readers for a closer look.
Here are a few non-traditional newsletter formats that readers love:
The newscard, or newsletter postcard, is a quick and economical way to send your newsletter and engage your readership. Newscard newsletters typically include two or three short articles and utilize attention-getting headlines to snag attention. They're shorter than traditional newsletters, but still have just as much influence, especially since they don't have to be opened to be read. Newscards also force you to practice concise writing and are therefore more engaging since you're not writing to simply fill space. The challenge of mastering brevity is worth it, because newscards are incredibly affordable to develop, print and mail.
If you're printing a standard-size newsletter but still want to look different, consider implementing a landscape layout that is positioned horizontally instead of vertically. This newsletter design technique creates opportunities to incorporate large, attention-getting images and interactive articles complete with pull-out quotes, information boxes and other visually appealing elements that add depth and prestige to your publication. Another benefit is that these space-consuming add-ins allow you to focus on writing two or three in-depth articles instead of stuffing your newsletter with six or seven thrown-together pieces that don't hold attention.
In many cases, bigger is better, especially when you're competing for reader attention. A large newsletter might be just the fix when vying for the top spot in the mailbox. You don't have to print standard newsletter sizes, even if your newsletter printing company only offers 8.5 inches by 11 inches. Instead, see if your printer offers booklets and brochures that you can turn into newsletter sizes of 12 inches by 12 inches or 8.5 inches by 14 inches to stand apart from the junk mail.
A hybrid of the newscard and traditional newsletter, you can print two-page newsletters using a single sheet of brochure paper; or, you can lay your newsletter design out with a half-fold to turn it into a mini -four-page newsletter. This technique can also make mailing your newsletters more economical and cut down on newsletter development costs and time. Just because your newsletter doesn't have four or more saddle-stitched pages doesn't mean it won't be read. Often, seemingly light reads have a better chance of capturing and holding customer attention than lengthy dialogue that takes too much time to plow through.
These are just a sampling of newsletter formats you can employ to earn more readership and yield a better response from your direct-mail newsletter marketing campaigns. Feel free to employ any of these devices, or use the ideas as part of your brainstorming session to create a completely new and attention-getting newsletter format.