A newsletter is defined as an informational publication about a specific topic on interest that is regularly sent out to either its subscribers or the general public. Newsletters can come either in printed (i.e. newspapers and pamphlets) or digital form (i.e. emails, e-zines, PDF).

Some of the more specific purposes of newsletters include:

Advertising – Companies use newsletters to keep their customers informed of the latest products, changes in product lines and services, promotional offers, and general information related to the products and services sold by that company. The company can also use the newsletter as a platform for boosting their public image by printing information about their latest charitable deeds and positive policy changes.

Educating or general information – Newsletters in the form of journals and educational pamphlets can be sent to school kids, the scientific community, and the general public. Educational newsletters can be sponsored by the government and so are given away for free or can be on a paid subscription basis (more common for journals). This is also used by offices and companies to keep their employers and shareholders informed of the company’s current performance.

Persuading – In cases of a special event wherein the public opinion needs to be swayed, special issues of newsletters can be distributed to people to get them to take one side. A perfect example for this would be during elections where “newsletters” espousing one candidate or party comes out. This is also effective for lobbying bills or government reforms because more information can be crammed in a newsletter series than in an infomercial.