I can’t tell you how often I’m asked by my clients which they should use to market their businesses, blogs or newsletters. Both involve getting information out to your prospects, customers, clients, and partners, so there are plenty of people out there who don’t see a difference between the two; and if you don’t do it right, there may not be a difference. So, the key is to do it right.
Easier said than done, right?
Not necessarily. There are some very strong differences that you can focus on when it comes to creating a newsletter and creating a blog. When it comes to small business marketing, I highly recommend employing the use of both, and, to an extent, blending them (I’ll get into that shortly).
First things first, I’m going to walk you through the effective use of both individually, and then I’ll give you some ideas for using them together.
Newsletter: A newsletter is an excellent tool to use to go out and be a little more aggressive in the dissemination of your information. With a newsletter, it’s best to tailor each message with a goal in mind. Whether you’re letting your audience know about a new product or service, advertising new pricing or simply offering more information. The beauty of a newsletter is that you have different segments through which you can funnel the reader into specific sections of your website and encourage them to act (buy something, contact you, etc).
Blog: A blog is a completely different tool, but of equal importance. Blogs have a number of advantages to them: they build your website, add a social component to what used to be a solely corporate entity and, most importantly offers your visitors more insight into products and services. A blog, however, is more of a passive form of marketing. A blog is something that people find when they come upon your website (assuming you have an attached blog, which you should). Blogs aren’t used to try to sell anything; when used correctly, the sole purpose of a blog is to offer your visitors more information through a public interface on your website.
So if the purpose of both the newsletter and the blog is information, why shouldn’t you pick one or the other? It’s simple: you’re newsletter is going to reach some people who haven’t subscribed to your blog, and your blog is going to reach people who haven’t subscribed to your newsletter. Why would you want to limit yourself to one or the other?
Creating a marketing campaign around a blog and a newsletter provides you the opportunity to enter your latest blog entry into your newsletter, thereby interesting more people in your blog. Alternatively, you can post your latest newsletter as a blog entry to get more people to sign up for your newsletter list.
Used effectively, these are incredibly powerful tools. It’s important to understand the difference between the two and to utilize them properly to watch your business grow as a result.