Jim Sweeney • December 07, 2016
Ah, the art of the church e-newsletter...
Though email can be a wonderful way to communicate important information to your church body, many people struggle to understand what to include in the body of their message and how to use the platform to their advantage.
This is a two-part blog-series. Last week, I discussed the logistics and best practices for creating an effective email newsletter program. This week's post focuses on how to create a newsletter that your church body will want to read....and keep reading.
1. Make the content exclusive
People won’t stay interested in your newsletter if it simply reiterates information they’ve already heard. Be sure to prominently feature information that hasn’t appeared elsewhere. The open rate will increase as people realize they’ll get something new everytime.
2. Make it attractive
Large blocks of text are visually boring and turn off readers. Include photos, graphics and, if your template allows, add video. If it doesn’t, include links to videos on your church website.
3. Keep it short
People receive an average of 121 emails a day, so take care not to simply add to the clutter. Long emails can be intimidating and off-putting; people might even decide that deciphering the important information isn’t worth the effort.
4. Make it enjoyable
You want people to read the newsletter because they enjoy it and find it worthwhile, not because they feel obligated to. Mix entertaining elements with more serious items.
5. Include other voices
The newsletter shouldn’t be written by just one person; invite worship leaders and prominent members of your community to contribute to it. That will help grow the audience and lend a variety of voices and perspectives.
6. Include a message from the Pastor
Your members want to hear from their spiritual leader. A message from the pastor also lends the newsletter credibility and authority.
7. Add contact information
If you’re announcing an event, program or activity, include the information people will want: times, addresses, names, emails and phone numbers.
Follow these instructions and people will look forward to the newsletter landing in their inbox.
In the face of unexpected or tragic events, you can't always wait until the next newsletter, or even your weekend service, to deliver an important message to your entire community. When faced with a more immediate level of urgency, here's How to Reach Your Entire Congregation When You Need To.