"Standing Heads" are categories of articles that you can include in your editorial calendar for your newsletter.
Selecting standing heads provides numerous advantages:
- Hand-wringing and office debates about content will be minimized.
- You know what kind of content you need to produce, so you can watch for ideas that fit these molds.
- As you write more and more of a particular category of article, you'll get better at it and will produce better articles, faster.
- Most importantly, your readers will start to look forward to your newsletter, because they will know what to expect.
Think about what you want people to do after they read your newsletter (what's your call to action?). Select the types of articles that are most likely to help or to inspire your readers to follow through on what you are asking them to do. Which of these types of articles will work for you and your readers?
- How-to Articles
- Advice Columns
- First-Person Anecdotes
- News Roundups
- Reviews or Recommendations
- Success Stories
- Personal Profiles
- Lists (e.g. Top Ten)
- Legislative Updates
- Action Alerts
- Hot Finds
- Wish Lists
- Surveys/Research Results
- Fact v. Fiction
You can mix and match these in your editorial calendar. For example, if you have three articles in your newsletter, maybe one of those articles is always a member profile and the other two slots are filled by two of five other article categories that you know work for you and your readers.
About the Author
Kivi Leroux Miller is president of Nonprofit Marketing Guide.com where she teaches a weekly webinar series for small nonprofits on communications and marketing. She also writes a leading blog on nonprofit communications. Her first book, also called "The Nonprofit Marketing Guide," will be available from Jossey-Bass in June 2010.