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By Dan Forootan

The newspaper industry would seem to be about the last one that could benefit and profit from email marketing. After all, isn’t the point of newspapers to get people to read them by either subscription or by heading out to the store every morning and picking one up?

Well, yes, but email marketing for newspapers is an excellent way to engage and bring in new readers, and perhaps the only way for the print media to remain viable in an increasingly electronic age. There are multiple ways in which a newspaper’s email marketing campaign can increase readership, many of which tie into the purpose of the newspaper—to deliver breaking news and features to its readers.

Let’s face it: The days of getting the news when the paper lands on your doorstep at the crack of dawn are long gone. If television news and the advent of around-the-clock all-news networks such as CNN began the downward spiral of newspapers, then the Internet hastened it. Most of what is inside the newspaper is already old news to anyone who picks it up.

But all is not lost for the written word. Email marketing for newspapers allows papers to inform subscribers of news almost as soon as it happens—even if the story is not yet ready for the web. Send out a short blurb alerting subscribers and readers to the breaking news and tease the story that will soon appear on the website.

Most people have their email open whenever they are on the computer, which means messages that are sent as part of a newspapers and email marketing operation are likely to be read almost as soon as they are received. Informing readers of news as it is developing will also make it far more likely they will rely on the newspaper as a trusted source of information and rely upon it as the story continues to evolve. Successful email marketing for newspapers will increase hits on the website (which is, more and more, the objective for the management behind the newspaper) while also encouraging readers to continue picking up the print product for more in-depth coverage.

The best part about email marketing for newspapers? It can often be planned out days or weeks in advance. There is no predicting breaking "real world" news, of course, but email marketing allows newspapers to remain in touch with readers during major local and national sporting events ranging from high school championship games to the Super Bowl or World Series. Use email marketing for newspapers to ensure that subscribers know about these newsworthy events and know they can get from the newspaper the type of up-to-the-second updates they won’t be able to find anywhere else.

These are tough times for newspapers, which will never again enjoy the market dominance they enjoyed a generation or two ago. Newspapers will have to work increasingly hard—on an ever-shrinking budget—just to get a toehold in a media world growing more immediate by the day. But the email marketing software necessary for email marketing of newspapers is inexpensive to purchase and will pay dividends now and for years to come!

Dan Forootan is the President of EZ Publishing. The firm specializes in helping businesses harness the power of the Internet for marketing and to automate business processes. In addition to custom web applications, EZ Publishing offers permission-based email marketing via StreamSend, a leading provider of easy, affordable and dependable email marketing software for creating, sending and tracking email newsletter and other campaigns.
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