Originally published in YNot Web’s "What Now" Newsletter, Volume 2. Issue 4.

1. Think about your purpose or goal: is it to inform people of changes to your site or sell them a product? Maybe you just want to make them think or laugh.

2. Know your audience. If you are using the newsletter to promote your products or services, what other information can you add to keep your readers interested?

3. Decide on your main topic—write it down.

4. Decide on your publishing schedule: how frequently do you want to send it out? Be prompt—stick to your schedule. You may want to start out less frequently than you’d like until you have the hang of meeting your deadline and the level of difficulty you have coming up with original content (quarterly, moving up to monthly, or monthly moving up to weekly).

5. Decide what type of content you want to include—write these down whether its Original Articles, Specials, What’s New, a Tip of the Week, Upcoming Schedule of Events, etc. Any combination of one or more—keeping in mind the size you want your newsletter to be.

6. Fill in the blanks above for your first newsletter (or outline of one).

7. Decide on how content will be presented: in its entirety or in table of contents format (where they link through to your web site for the full article). Also, do you want to send emails in plain text or HTML format?

8. Decide how to manage your subscriber list and how to publish your newsletter. There are software programs and scripts you can acquire and implement on your own or you can use an external service, such as YNot Web’s Express Email Marketing™ found in our YNot Shop.

9. Promote your newsletter and get subscribers.