You would like to set up a monthly internal newsletter but don’t really know where to start? Or maybe you already have one but decided that it was time to refresh the content?
Here are some tips to help you construct a great internal newsletter.
Inform about the company
An internal newsletter is the perfect chance to inform everyone about the events that occur in the company such as fairs, events, articles in magazines…(and even parties!). This is a good way to notify the employees of what the company is up to.
We, at Liana, like to strengthen our team spirit by gathering together when we get the opportunity to do so:
If your workdays consist of using your company’s products, you can also inform of the updates of the products – whether it's software, supplies or any other products. Actually, you can still inform everyone about the updates, even if you don’t use them.
Here’s how MacPaw does it:
You can also talk about the major news regarding your industry – technological, economical, legal, etc.
Putting the employees in the spotlight
It is important to feel welcomed, and the internal newsletter is a good way to inform everyone when a new employee or an intern starts working with them. Just a mention and a picture is enough, and the newbie will be pleased about this short introduction.
You can also inform everyone when an employee has a promotion or changes team. Presenting a different service of your company every month and/or putting someone’s everyday tasks in the spotlight is also a way to make people feel involved.
Putting forward some employees’ stories can be interesting. Here are some examples:
- If you have offices in several locations and someone from one office goes to another for a few days, they can tell how it went
- Present randomly an employee with funny and more serious questions
- Ask a member of the board, a team leader, or an employee to tell their stories: how they started working for the company and how they reached their current position
Depending on your company’s field, you can also update everyone on published projects, best salesperson of the month — all in all, showcase people’s accomplishments from different viewpoints.
Create a lighter “news corner”
On special dates, you can write about the related holiday or day (such as a national holiday, Christmas, the summer break, etc.). If some of your colleagues are coming from different countries or if the organization has offices in other parts of the globe, it can be interesting to talk about each country’s national holiday or traditions when the date is coming, just like we do it :
For a special occasion, you can also adapt the template of your newsletter to match the date (Christmas, for example).
To fuel this type of news corner and create a light atmosphere in your company you can organize some small contests among the employees and reveal the results in the internal newsletter. You will have some funny stories to tell, and some great blooper video content to share.
Design Within Reach created an original contest for everyone to showcase their creativity.
You can also create a “life hack” section, to give some tips about the office life: for example, remind everyone how to create out-of-office auto-replies before going on holidays or any other small pro tips.
Does this seem like a lot to take in? Don’t bombard your newsletters with too many topics at the same time. Instead, change the topics in every newsletter to make them more diverse.
What should your newsletter look like?
As an internal newsletter is less formal than a regular newsletter, a lighter tone can be used. It will make the recipients feel closer to you and to the company. You can insert exclamation points, emojis, figures of speech and specific humor.
Incorporating images can also lighten up your newsletter. Use pictures of your company life, employees, common rooms, offices – it is better than using stock pictures. However, avoid using them too much in the same letter.
Here is an example from Nerdery.
You can use the same header picture, logo or emoji on every newsletter to create a pattern. For example, if your company is selling pools and you like to call yourselves the merpeople, you can use a merman or a mermaid emoji – or both – in the title of every internal newsletter.
To match our jungle theme, a monkey-emoji has been chosen to represent us :
If you want to redirect people to other webpages showing different published projects you can obviously incorporate links. You can also add videos or a link to a video.
Remember the basics
Some important rules to remember:
- Fonts: do not use more than two different types, and choose a text color that is easy to read.
- Colors: bright or more plain, as you wish.
- Effects: be careful not to use too much. It is not really pleasant for the eyes when everything is sparkling.
Last important details
The length of your internal newsletter is also important. TL;DR - too long, didn’t read - has to be your motto. Therefore, 5 to 6 sections per newsletter is the maximum number of sections that you should have, and some can be really short (for example, the life hack section).
If you have a lot to say and just can’t reduce the length, you can send an internal newsletter every two weeks instead of one per month: the content will be shorter and your newsletter will be in everyone’s inbox more often!
Last but not least: your mailing list. It is a good thing to send the internal newsletter to all employees, including the board members. However, you can also consider other recipients, such as partner companies or other important stakeholders. The choice is yours!