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Tuesday 16 September 2008

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The time is right for the return of the print newsletter because there is simply too much to read in our email inboxes.

It’s a shame because email is still the most significant aspect of the internet revolution. 

The HTML e-newsletter is a brilliant way to communicate.  It’s immediate, compelling, economic and ecologically sound.

But there’s just too many of them.

We regularly recommend e-newsletters to our clients as the most cost effective way to stay in front of customers on a regular basis.  And they still work if the content is sound.  But only in the same way that freeways still work.

Freeways for cars were such a compelling idea that everyone wanted to drive on one.  Now at certain times of day they become carparks.

And while this email traffic jam takes centre stage, an opportunity has opened up for the return of the print newsletter.

In contrast to the clutter of the contemporary email inbox, a tastefully-crafted and well-presented newsletter becomes a refreshing short-run option. 

To continue the analogy, print newsletters are like a relaxing Sunday drive down tree-lined rural lanes.

Digital print technology these days encourages short-run printing. But the costs are far greater than the e-news alternative.

With these extra costs and postage involved, it is important to correctly target them at specific and relevant people.

Next, they should be properly presented.  Avoid plastic wrap or other techniques used in mass distribution.

A hand-addressed envelope with a real postage stamp is ideal.  Who can resist a personally-addressed, hand-written envelope that is too big to be a bill?

Handwriting is obviously impractical for large runs, so the old sticky labels would be the next best thing.

And once opened by the addressee, the communication continues. 

Because the print newsletter is such a novelty these days, your message has a much better chance of being read.

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