This is the fun part, and here’s how it works.
Once you’ve decided to kick-start your newsletter project, what comes next? After you’ve identified your target audience (referring veterinarians or pet owners), as well as who on your team is going to manage the newsletter process, it’s time to brainstorm story ideas. This is the fun part – no, really! Just keep the following fundamentals in mind to come up with content your readers will enjoy.
Show you care
Contrary to what you may think, your newsletter should focus primarily on helping your readers, not promoting your services. 90 percent of your content should focus on reader concerns with only 10 percent of the content dedicated to talking about your business.
Entertain and educate
Referring veterinarians need practical information to help them be successful in their own clinics, while pet owners are looking for advice to make their pets’ lives better. For example, an article for referring veterinarians could cover ways to improve the orthopedic exam. Images of x-rays could be included for illustration. For pet owners, you could share tips on what to expect during an orthopedic exam, with a photo of a patient with your specialists and staff, showing the human-animal bond. Would you like more ideas? Grab our list of newsletter content ideas. It’s free!:
Don’t forget pictures
It’s easy to get wrapped up in the telling, but showing is just as important. Readers skim headlines, photos and captions before deciding if reading the text is worth their time. Colorful, interesting pictures can compel readers to take a deeper dive into your content. So, as you consider various article ideas, think about the pictures you could use to go with them.
If you’d like to use snapshots from your hospital, be sure you have signed releases from employees pictured as well as from owners whose pets are featured in the images. Also, keep in mind that too many “subjects” in the shot will make your photo look cluttered. Try to include no more than four subjects in your photos. Additionally, opt for photos that have at least one of the subjects making direct eye contact – it instantly connects with the reader.
You can also purchase general pets and people images from websites like istockphoto.com and stock.adobe.com. Look for good quality images with a resolution of at least 300 pixels per inch for print and 72 pixels per inch for e-newsletters.
Share next steps
Most important: Before you and your newsletter editor call the copy “final,” double check to make sure that you have included a direction for your readers on what to do next. Termed a “call to action” (CTA), these end messages are requests or reminders of what you want your reader to do after reading a piece. For example, “Call Dr. Lynn for a phone consultation” or “Like us on Facebook.”
As you write your rDVM-focused newsletter, consider CTAs such as invitations for seminars, meet-and-greets, open houses or phone consultations.
For your pet owner audience, CTAs could include inviting them to events at your hospital such an open house or holiday pet photo sessions, asking them to forward your e-newsletter to friends, inviting them to share their story with you, or suggesting they ask their family veterinarian for a referral to your practice.
Skip the Work
We specialize in building and managing newsletters for practices like yours. Contact Liz Lindley at 877.703.3824 x105 or email@example.com. We can discuss your practice’s specific challenges and the solutions available.
Be sure to sign-up for our blog updates so you don’t miss the next one: “6 Design Essentials for Veterinary Newsletters.” Whether you’re designing it in-house or working with a graphic designer, these tips will give you the info you need to ask for an effective and easy-to-read layout.