Whether your property is a municipal park, a school, a church, an apartment complex, or a neighborhood, your playground is a place for young families to come together as they enjoy fresh air and physical activity. To keep parents and their children engaged between visits to your play space, consider publishing a community newsletter.
Whether you publish weekly, monthly, or quarterly, a family newsletter will help you
- Strengthen the sense of community among the families you serve
- Engage parents by offering healthy living tips on nutrition, activity, and wellness
- Keep readers apprised of family-focused events at your facility and in the surrounding area
- Attract new visitors to your kids outdoor playground and other outdoor amenities
As you consider the content and format of your family newsletter, here are a few decisions to consider:
- Print or online: Online newsletters are less expensive to produce, but could get lost among the dozens of emails recipients get every day. Print newsletters cost more to print and distribute, but some studies show that they’re more likely to be read.
- Name: Come up with a catchy name for your publication, one that people will remember.
- Frequency: If you have a large, active community with plenty of activities on a regular basis, a weekly newsletter might serve you best. For smaller communities, a monthly or even quarterly publication might be a better choice.
- Length: Consider how long you want your newsletter to be, and keep the length consistent from issue to issue. Remember, if you opt for a print newsletter longer than two pages, your page count will need to be a multiple of 4.
- Format: Just like a newspaper or magazine, your newsletter will have regular sections and columns that will appear in every issue. Determine what you’ll want those sections to look like; for example, each issue might include a story on family health and wellness, a neighborhood family profile, a list of upcoming events, announcements (such as school closures), and a fun element like a seasonal trivia question or a pet-of-the-month photo.
- Images: Every newsletter needs good visuals, so plan in advance where your publication’s images will come from. Will you use stock photography, original photos, or a combination of the two? Keep in mind that if you use photos of people in your community (especially kids), you’ll need to obtain permission.
- Process: Decide who will create the content for each issue and what the editorial approval process will look like.
- Schedule: Set a delivery date for each issue you will publish this year, then work backwards from each date to determine when layout needs to be done, when content needs to be completed, when images need to be submitted, etc.
The beginning of a new year is a perfect time for launching a newsletter to engage, inform, and entertain the families in your community. Plan your product carefully, build your team, put your processes in place, and get ready to reap the benefits of a vibrant, engaging publication that your families will love.