Now that you’ve crafted engaging newsletter content, you’ll want to create a design that attracts attention and is easy to read. Ask your in-house designer or vendor for a layout that’s streamlined and simple with lots of whitespace for readers’ eyes to rest.
Besides the usual items – a masthead, table of contents, page numbers – we find it’s the little, but crucial things that often get missed when designing a print or electronic newsletter.
Here are the five newsletter design essentials you shouldn’t overlook:
- Contact information
If readers want to get in touch after receiving your newsletter, they should be able to do so by quickly skimming your newsletter to find your contact information. Be sure to include your address, phone and fax numbers, and client service email address. Plus, if you have multiple locations, listing all of them helps build awareness of hospitals that could be more conveniently located to the reader. If you’re creating an e-newsletter, you can link your hospital information to a page on your website so the reader can click through, generating more traffic for your site, and hopefully encouraging them to look around a little bit while they’re there.
- Social media links and icons
It’s important to promote your social media accounts in multiple ways. Let readers, who may be keen to communicate via social media, know you’re on there, too. On a print newsletter you could include the Facebook icon plus the phrase “follow us on Facebook” and your Facebook URL, which usually looks something like this: www.facebook.com/COMPANYNAME. In an e-newsletter, you can simply insert the Facebook icon and link the image directly to your Facebook page, so the reader can click the icon to access your page.
- Your website
Don’t forget to send readers to your website for more information. Besides including the website address at the bottom or top of your newsletter, you can also offer special, online-only content. If you have text or images you couldn’t fit into your print newsletter, you can ask people to go to your website to read more. For example, if your story is, “The Crazy Things Dogs Eat,” you can insert a teaser at the end of the article that says, “To see all the x-ray images of weird things dogs eat, visit ABCVeterinaryHospital.com.” For e-newsletters, don’t forget to link your logo to your homepage. You can insert links to specific pages of your website as well.
- Opt-in and opt-out messages
These terms are used for e-newsletters, but can also be applied to print. An opt-in message is a reminder about why the reader is receiving an email from you. It generally sits at the very top or bottom of the email and says, in small print, something similar to: “You are receiving this email because you requested pet news and health updates from us.” An opt-out message is usually at the bottom of an e-newsletter and offers a way for people who no longer want to receive your e-newsletter to unsubscribe. Both messages should be included in every e-newsletter you send. This helps reduce the number of people who might label your email as spam and also ensures that the subscribers on your email list truly want to receive information from you.
When it comes to print newsletters, it’s a good idea to mention how readers can contact your organization to update their mailing address or doctor names, or ask to be removed from your mailing list.
- Brand identity
Your brand identity is something that helps rDVMs and pet parents quickly recognize your practice. It’s your logo, the fonts used within all of your external documents and publications, and the signature colors you use on your website, brochures and signage. In two words, it’s style consistency. Don’t forget to carry your style through to your newsletter design as well. It should feature your colors, logo and preferred fonts.
Want a FREE design assessment?
If you already have a newsletter design, but know it needs work or want to make sure it’s in stellar shape, we can help. Click here, or contact Liz Lindley at firstname.lastname@example.org to get a complimentary review of your newsletter. We’ll use our 5-point checklist to identify what’s working and what needs tweaking.