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Four Benefits of an Internal Newsletter

You already know the importance of a sound internal communications plan for engaging and retaining top talent. What you may not know is how neatly an email newsletter fits into that strategy. With no printing or mailing costs, it’s one of the most cost-effective ways to reach your most valuable (and face it, vocal) audiences. Plus, with a little pre-planning, much of the content can be repurposed for other communication channels.

  1. Keep them “in the loop.” Forbes reported in 2014 on a Catalyst study that found employees who feel more included at work were more likely to report going above and beyond the call of duty. Inclusion is a basic human instinct, and an internal newsletter can fulfill that need by brining employees into the tent.
  2. Build trust. A well-crafted newsletter conveys the value of transparency, and the best ones are open about the company’s good news (landing a new client), as well as the bad (increasing insurance premiums). Present info in a no-bull format, and soon employees will be anticipating the newsletter’s publication.
  3. Initiate over-the-fence communication. I doubt anyone really talks to their neighbors over a backyard fence anymore, but I still like the analogy for considering how information moves. In short, people talk. When you provide timely, relevant, thoughtful information, you give them something to talk about. And, via your newsletter, you determine the topic. Remember: in the absence of information, the human brain makes stuff up.
  4. Have some fun. I wrote an internal newsletter for a hospital for several years. On a whim, I decided to include a short Q and A with an employee in every issue. It turned out to be the most-read and widely-discussed piece of the publication. I asked things like, “What’s your favorite book/band/song?” and “Who would you like to be stranded on a deserted island with?” I asked things that don’t come up in everyday, work place conversation, and it was a hit.

If you’re intrigued about the benefits of an internal newsletter and would like to learn more about how to create your own, I’d love to chat.

Sage Johnson is a professional freelance writer.

I credit my early love of writing – and costume jewelry – to my fourth grade teacher, Mrs. Nesbit, a stork of a woman who sang, “Clang, clang, clang went the trolley. Boom, boom, boom went my heart.” In junior high, I covered the community college hockey team for my hometown newspaper. I got to ride the bus to out-of-town games with the team – including a certain defenseman – which was payment enough for me. I eventually had to swear off hockey players, but could never shake writing, even when I dipped my toes into other careers (like real estate, long story). My sister says I don’t have a “type” when it comes to guys, and I guess the same is true of my writing experience. I get butterflies at the prospect of a press release on a tight deadline, and I lose all sense of time and space when immersed in a technical paper, case study or cover story. I used to take pride in the commonly-held belief that a journalist is a “jack-of-all trades and master of none.” Although I proudly own my writing promiscuity, I would argue professional writers are masters of The Story. That tall drink of water that enters every room like he owns the damn place. The jaw bone in the tux at the red neck wedding. The perfectly insouciant posture chatting up the bartender. The guy who discusses geopolitics and Packer football with equal passion. Like it or not, we’re all drawn to The Story.

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