Ten criteria for winning newsletters

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Author: George Griffin
Date: May 1995
From: Graphic Arts Monthly(Vol. 67, Issue 5)
Publisher: Reed Business Information, Inc. (US)
Document Type: Column
Length: 555 words

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Promotional newsletters from printers can exemplify the best of the genre. Essential ingredients for a successful newsletter include clarity of purpose, individual style, editorial quality and having a strong message. A good newsletter will also be published frequently and reliably, contain high quality art and graphics, strong production values and be useful to the reader. Thirteen successful newsletters are described.

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Printers who use newsletters know why they're doing it Their newsletters attract new customers and help keep old ones.

"Newsletter" can mean corporate magazine, or a periodic bulletin, or a monthly joke sheet. The joke sheets can be amazingly ad-effeclive and inexpensive to produce. Syndicated humor services start at $30 a month for camera-ready copy.

This column salutes a baker's dozen printers whose newsletters are extraordinary in content and impact.

I break each of the 10 criteria for making a successful newsletter into "tenths of perfection." They are: 1. Clarity of purpose. 2. Strength of advertiser identity and message. 3. Production (printing) values. 4. Subject matter. 5. Writing and editing quality. 6. Typographic quality. 7. Art/design quality. 8. Usefulness to the reader. 9. Frequency and faithfulness to frequency. 10. Personality/Charisma/Style. Each of these factors is a fairly deep subject on its own but to have each of the 10 well covered is to enjoy a winning newsletter, guaranteed.

A winning newsletter is one that the recipient looks forward to receiving and spends time reading, thus soaking up the message. Without further ado, here are 13 printing/graphic arts concerns whose self-promotional publishing efforts put them up there with the best, all over 8.5 on the Richter scale just described.

First, Haff-Daughtery's "First Impressions" is elegant, beautiful, fun-to-experience, informative, artistic, uniquely formatted, conyincing. Joanie Skipp, editor, P.O. Box 110490, Hialeah Fla., 33011-0490.

MjJo Lithographing Co. Inc., RO. Box 1104, Yazoo City, Miss. 39194, publishes one of the most readerfriendly newsletters in America, "The Main SWeet Stationer."

ABS Graphics, 901 So. Rte. 53, Addison, Ill. 601014229, issues a stunning, highly-colored broadside-style house publication, "What's Up?" that explodes with facts, insights, and ideas.

"Graphic Communique" is a slick, up-beat, tabloidstyle house organ with both snap and sizzle. Published by The Callaher Group, 336 13 St., Ashland, Ky. 41101.

The "Spectrum Newsletter is a superb typographic specialty paper by the highly regarded intemational type people, Spedrum, at 225 W. 39 St. N.Y., N.Y. 10018.

"SEASON" is the awardwinning, nationally-saluted newsletter originated by Dave Bause's Copy Fast Printing, 246 King St., Pottstown, Pa. 19464.

Advance Printing Co., P.O. Box 37633, Cincinnati Ohio 45222-0633, issues a cleanly-designed, engaging house pub called "Advance Notice."

"Infosense" by H.M. Ives & Sons, Inc., P.O. Box 1338, Topeka, Kan. 66601-1338, does an excellent job of giving the reader something of value that's also entertaining.

Reese Press, 2301 Kirk Ave., Baltimore, Md. 212186275, puts out the sensirively art-directed "Inklings."

"World Class" is superbly printed, tightly edited, and open-ended, inviting the reader to expect more. From Graphic World Printing, Inc., 195 Willis St., Bedford, Ohio 44146.

'The Book Builder" is professional, and rich in color and tech and trade informarion. WebCorn is at 3480 Pharmacy Ave., Toronto Ontario M1W 363 Canada.

"Presspective" by LGM Graphics, Inc., 737 Moray St., Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada, has elegant printing, uncluttered design, and spirited text and graphics.

Finally, French-Bray, Inc. scores with its stylish newsletter, "LION." 6731 Baymeadow Drive, Glen Burnie, Md. 21060.

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A16878269