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e-Newsletters or Blogs. Which one is best?

Jun2

Written by:
2009/06/02 09:30 AM RssIcon

image Blog vs. e-Newsletter, which should you or your business use? This has always been a struggling point,even for me. I recently had this exact same situation from one of our clients. They felt that there was no purpose in having both blog and newsletter. But what is best? The quick answer is both. In order to understand the answer, we have to understand the purpose of both blogs and newsletters.

The general combined purpose of both blogs and e-newsletters is to keep connected with your customers, clients, friends, readers. By including them into your circle, they feel like they are a valuable part of your business. Both blog and newsletter are communication devices. Both are valuable in promoting your business.  Promoting or marketing your business should and will increase sales.

In order to get that right, we have to understand that there are significant differences between the two methods.

e-Newsletter

An e-newsletter that you send to your customers, clients, and potential clients is a great monthly or quarterly device. It is regarded as a scheduled form of communication. Always stick to a schedule when sending an e-newsletter.  It is a personal and private form of communication. In many cases companies would seek to mail merge their newsletter with their customer database or some other list.

Newsletters are normally received by people who have opted or chosen to receive one. The best part of a newsletter is that it shows up in your readers’ email box. Users and customers can then take action, hopefully by reading it. The information is there in front of them. They don’t have to go looking for it. There is no need to Google information.

With a newsletter you can offer advise, sales items, coupons, event notification, and a complete litany of information to your email list.

Blog

A blog is typically shorter, and normally easier to produce. You write more often so that your blog can stay up to date and current. The disadvantage though, is that it is up to your readers to decide when and if they are going to bookmark your blog and read it. But the interested and involved customer will do this, for you are offering them something they want - professional information, social information, or simply price discounts.

The advantage, though, is that your blog is open and public. The search engines have opportunity to index your blog. People can find your blog and blog posts via searches. This then leads to great opportunities for new clients and customers. Why? Because people would find you blog in an answer to their question. 

A blog fall into the Web 2.0 category. Blogs are normally public and open for comments. They promote interactivity. They promote social networking. With a blog you can get the the heart and emotions of your readers. Answer their questions and fears. Blogs are important in building two way relationships.

For the more technically minded there is RSS (Real Simple Syndication), The customer or client can automatically put your new blog information streamed to them via email, blog readers, etc. but this is pertinent to only a small percentage of customers.  For more information on RSS, read the wiki page for RSS.

The big upside to using blogs is that you don’t need an email address, therefore the whole world wide web can find your blog.

Conclusion

So how do we put this all together? What is the final answer? The truth of the matter is that you can take advantage of both forms of communication. Send out your e-newsletter. Tell them about your blog and why they should read it. On your blog, make sure you have the capability of collecting email addresses on your blog site / web site with an offer to send an informative newsletter. This is a great way to collect email addresses of interested parties. Therefore blogs and e-newsletters work in tandem, so there are no one versus the other. Blogs and newsletter only compliment each other.

Talkong about RSS feeds, why not subscibe to our RSS feed @ The Brave Programmer RSS Feed

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6 comment(s) so far...


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Re: e-Newsletters or Blogs. Which one is best?

All that said, I'd much rather have a client who sends out a newsletter every 3 to 6 months than a client with a blog that's updated for three months, then left to languish. A blog that hasn't been updated in months is worse than no blog at all.

By Theresa Carpenter Sondjo on  2009/06/02 09:54 AM
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Re: e-Newsletters or Blogs. Which one is best?

But I have a few blogs on my RSS feed that are updated maybe 3-4 times in a year. And when they do post, it is generally a very good post. I think it's more about getting the signal to noise ratio balanced nicely.

By Aslam Khan on  2009/06/02 10:07 AM
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Re: e-Newsletters or Blogs. Which one is best?

Theresa,

Newsletters are great, and have there purpose, so do blogs. Why not be content with both. What about a guy who updates hi blog everyday, but only sends out one newsletter a year.
You hit the nail on the head, its about consistency, about updating regularly. Either Blog or newsletter will not work if it is not updated and regular.

By Robert Bravery on  2009/06/02 11:09 AM
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Re: e-Newsletters or Blogs. Which one is best?

Aslam,

It's all about quality isn't it. Also about personal preference.
I like you comment about signal to noise. Many newsletters and blogs are just noise, with no substance what so ever.

By Robert Bravery on  2009/06/02 11:12 AM
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Re: e-Newsletters or Blogs. Which one is best?

Newsletters can end up like spam. It is nice when the two compliment each other. Newsletter that has a synopsis of the posts or articles is better. If recipient is still interested he will visit your site/blog to read the full article.

By Rustig on  2009/06/02 04:08 PM
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Re: e-Newsletters or Blogs. Which one is best?

Good point. You don't want it to become spam. You want it to be informative, drive traffic to your site or blog, generate sales. I like the Idea of a synopsis of posts or articles or even products.

By Robert Bravery on  2009/06/02 05:23 PM
 
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