This article is courtesy of Constant Contact:

You’ve found those precious few minutes where you have time to send out an email newsletter. You’ve got a great template and a great design for it, too.

The only problem is that you have no idea what to say.

But coming up with great content ideas that really resonate with your customers doesn’t have to be hard.

The truth is that small businesses and nonprofits have a big advantage over their larger competitors: relationships.

You can use your everyday customer interactions to create great content that you know your audience will love—because you’re just continuing the conversation. So put those invaluable interactions to good use.

Here are three ways to turn offline interactions into personal, online content:

1. Use a question as inspiration

If a customer asks a question about a particular product or a supporter calls and wants to know more details about a specific initiative, the odds are good that a lot of other people have same question.

You’ve already answered the question once, so why not write down the answer for your next newsletter?

Using questions as the basis for your content helps your emails feel more personal because you’re addressing the topics going through the minds of your customers.

2. Offer a coupon with a specific customer in mind

Small businesses have some very loyal customers. You get to know these patrons and, better yet, you get to know their preferences.

If you’re struggling to come up with a creative coupon or offer, think about one of those customers. What do they get from your store? What experience do they have and why do they keep coming back?

What could you offer that would make them say “Wow!”? Thinking about offers this way can help you create something unique that your customers would really love.

3. Build a series around conversations

In the same way that you turn a single question into content, you can also turn everyday conversations into a series.

What parts of your conversation require more explanation? Map out the different parts and put together content to be shared over time in a series. Writing with that conversation in mind allows you to position yourself as a likeable expert in your field.

Content, conversations, and emails

Personalizing content in this way makes your email newsletters and email campaigns more unique and more engaging because your contacts feel like you really know them.

So when you’re thinking about what type of content you’re going to create next, look to your every day interactions with your customers for inspiration.

This advice is courtesy of Spark & Hustle National Sponsor Constant Contact. Constant Contact’s leading email marketing, social media marketing, event marketing, local deals, digital storefronts, and online surveys — supported by free KnowHow , personalized coaching, and award-winning product support — help all types of small businesses and organizations find new customers, drive repeat business, and generate referrals. Today, more than half a million customers worldwide trust Constant Contact to help them drive success.

See the original article here.