Are there ezines that you receive that you just can’t wait to read? I know I have 3 or 4 that I read as soon as they hit my inbox, and others that I print and put in my "reading box" next to my desk.
What do you think makes me want to read those few right away?
It’s the personal connection I feel to the author, even if I don’t know that person (some I’ve met, some I haven’t yet). Besides the valuable content I get each time I read their newsletter, I am most interested in finding out what’s happening with them, personally and professionally.
As they share more about themselves and their lives, I get to know, like and trust them (and their products or services) over time (and you know that people only buy from people they know, like, and trust, right?). And eventually I tend to make the investment in them and their offerings.
For example, I was a subscriber to Chris Barrow’s "More Profit in Less Time" ezine for about a year when I learned through it that he was holding a live event in NYC. I signed up (at $200), attended the event, and left as a client (for $450/month). Do you think I would have invested that kind of money if I hadn’t gotten to know, like, and trust CB and his materials? Of course not.
So, how can you put more of YOU in your ezine to make that connection with your readers? Try some of the following:
1. What’s going on with you?
Can you think of two or three things that are happening in your life right now that you could share with your readers? You only need to get as personal as you feel comfortable with, so don’t feel that you need to share everything, by any means. Just a couple of things that you can share comfortably that your readers might find interesting as well as help them feel more connected to you.
For example, are you going on vacation soon or did you just get back from a trip? This is usually an easy topic to start with, and don’t be surprised if your readers write to you to suggest hotels, tell you their experiences when they visited the same locale, etc.
Or do you have a pet that you can relate stories about? You’ll be amazed at how many of your readers will feel like they really know you if you share your latest "adventures with Rover" stories.
2. Ask for help.
If you are trying to make a decision about something, ask your readers for suggestions and feedback. To continue the vacation example above, say you are considering taking a cruise. Ask your readers for suggestions as to their favorite cruise line, or which ones to avoid. They’ll be happy to help!
3. Add photos.
I try to add a photo every week if I can (it’s not hard when I take a lot of pictures of my kids!). A photo of yourself is also a really good idea. It goes a long way in helping your readers see you as a real person.
Try to incorporate these ideas into one section of your ezine, either at the beginning or the end. You can call it anything you like: A note from you, personal reflections, from the desk of_______, etc. Personally, I like to see it at the beginning since it’s usually the part I read first.
Remember not to take up too much space, though. You still want the majority of your ezine to contain quality content for you reader, since that’s why they signed up in the first place!