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How to create and promote Newsletters in SharePoint & Office 365

A prevalent need these days, especially for larger companies, is to aggregate and broadcast the information to employees. Historically, organizations used a variety of available tools to do so: from mass emails using Outlook to Newsletter PDF attachments to professional-looking newsletters using third-party email marketing applications. However, the most common problem with such tools is that information is disconnected and located all over the place. SharePoint modern pages provide a means to solve this dilemma. In this post, I would like to explain how you can use the functionality available in modern SharePoint to publish and distribute your newsworthy content and promote newsletters in SharePoint!

Step 1: Create your news posts using modern pages

This is the most exciting part of this post – an ability to create a nice-looking newsletter using SharePoint modern pages. In the old days, classic wiki pages did not allow for much of publishing capabilities. Pages often looked dull, and editing them was clunky. That all changed with the introduction of the modern site pages. The experience of putting a nice looking SharePoint page is similar to that of a regular website in terms of speed and look and feel. Modern web parts allow creating very visual pages that are exciting and sexy.

I described how the News Web Part works in this post.

Step 2: Promote newsletters in SharePoint & Office 365

OK, now that you created the news posts, it is time to promote them. There are many ways to do so. Let me summarize them for you below.

Embed the News Web Part on the Homepage

This kind of happens by default when you create/add a News Web Part, but you want to add it to the prominent place on the Main Intranet site/homepage.

 

An example of a News widget on a Company Intranet

SharePoint Start Page

This is something that happens automatically as well. All the posts you create on any of the sites are being aggregated on the SharePoint Start page.  So anytime your employees go to this page to access other sites or search for content, they will see the news posts prominently displayed in there.

Promote news posts via Email

You can also push the newsletter out by email. The cool thing is – you can do so right from within a news post. And the email that is sent will link the users directly into the newsletter post you created, bringing the user to the Homepage. And the bonus here: you can also send the emails to a distribution list or mail-enabled security group as well!

An example of how to send an email from within a news post

An example of an email recipient receives

Promote newsletter digest via Email

A neat trick to promote newsletters in SharePoint is by emailing a digest (collection) of news posts from within SharePoint. Here is how it works.

  1. When you have several news posts created in the News widget, you will notice See all link (it won’t appear until you have several posts created).
  2. When you click on See all, you will then be able to click on Email a news digest button, which in turn will allow you to select the news posts to be sent via an email.promote Newsletters in SharePoint Online
  3. On the next screen, just choose the news posts to include and click Next
  4. On the last page, you can give your newsletter a title, add the recipients, add some optional text, and hit the Send news digest button.
  5. And this is what the user will see when receiving this email.promote Newsletters in SharePoint Online
  6. It is important to note that for every newsletter/digest you email/put together, it creates a separate page in the Site Pages library consisting of links to the news posts you chose above. So in a way, it is a permanent page that is kept for reference. This is great as you can use this as a catalog of all the newsletters you sent out.
  7. And this is what how each automatically-created page looks likepromote Newsletters in SharePoint Online

 

Promote via Yammer

If your organization is using Yammer, what a great way to spread the word about Newsletter via the company’s social network. You can even encourage a discussion with employees so they can comment on it.

Promote via Teams Posts

If you are using Teams (and I am sure you are), just like with Yammer, you can post your news post page from SharePoint in the Posts area of a channel.

promote Newsletters in SharePoint Online

Promote via Teams SharePoint News App

Lastly, you can take advantage of the wonderful SharePoint Newsletter App, which you can add as a Connector in a Teams channel. This trick only works when you post news to the SharePoint Site that is connected to Teams (Office 365 Group). To do that:

  1. Click the + Sign in a channel of your choice to add a new Connector
  2. On the next screen, click More apps
  3. The name of the app is SharePoint News
  4. You will then be prompted to add the app/connector to the Teampromote Newsletters in SharePoint Online
  5. On the next screen, you can specify which channel this will be added to. Click Set up a connectorpromote Newsletters in SharePoint Online
  6. Once added, you will get to see a confirmation message in the posts area in your channel
  7. So every time you post something on a SharePoint site connected to this Team, it will appear in the posts area of the channel you configured above.
  8. Here is a Microsoft article on the same topic, just in case you need to reference it.

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