To many, the fonts chosen in their printed marketing literature are barely given a thought but to expert newsletter designers, there’s an incredible importance placed upon the fonts you use and why they matter to the readers of your printed newsletters.

The fonts used within the design of your printed newsletter design are of great importance and need careful consideration before application.

Many clients have pre-approved typefaces that they need to use within their design. These could come from existing brand identity guidelines or historical usage or from personal preference and your newsletter designer should be able to incorporate them without issue.

However, what if you don’t have fonts ready to go or don’t know what you want?

Well that is where the skills of your professional newsletter designer comes into play.

Firstly, we should look at font choices and why they matter.

Font Choices

The typography used can change the entire look and feel of a newsletter. It can have stunning imagery, the perfect colour scheme, witty headlines and beautifully crafted text along with strong calls to action but if the fonts used don’t match or complement this, then it is highly likely to turn your readers off.

Skilfully arranging all the different typographic elements into your design such as the style of the fonts you choose, the sizes, hierarchy, colour scheme, contrast and often the most important – the whitespace – will certainly help deliver the results you need.

When choosing fonts for your newsletter you must consider when they are combined if they work in harmony with one another. Having type competing with itself and other elements within your newsletter doesn’t work, will confuse and deter your reader.

The use of typography in printed newsletters does three main things, namely:

1. Tone and Brand Personality
Type sets the overall tone of your newsletter and defines your brand personality. Traditional serif fonts can appear formal, dependable or more serious. While serif fonts are often seen as more modern and stylish. But whether you are looking for a modern or vintage look for example, selecting the right typefaces and arranging them correctly will make all the difference.

Combining both serif and non serifs can be a fantastic way to establish your brand personality through type and add credence to your messages.

As an aside, we see a lot of newsletters for schools and nurseries and these often have used childish comic or handwriting style fonts in the hope of achieving a feel of informality and / or fun. Unfortunately, as these fonts are often used to the extreme it can be particularly off-putting for the reader.

Whatever your brand personality, you simply need to ensure that it is enhanced with the use of typefaces rather than confusing or diluting it.

2. It Establishes and Maintains Hierarchy
Each piece of text within your newsletter will have varying degrees of importance. From headlines to the main body text to image captions – and you can manage the structure and hierarchy through typeface choice and size.

It is possible to then reinforce them further through font weight, colour and position. In doing so, you ensure your key messages are structured as you wish them to be.

The hierarchy within your design ensures you can differentiate the parts that are most important or that require interaction from your reader.

3. Typography Engages Readers
The fonts you use aids engagement with your readers. Mismatched fonts , confusing layouts or unbalanced structures turns off your readers. Get it right and you will greatly enhance the overall engagement in your message and your brand in general.

Printed communications that are attractive in appearance and preserves the value of your content will work much better than those that don’t.

Type legibility and simplicity through the text within your newsletter, will play a vital role and this will often be the make or break of your newsletter.

Remember, the text within your newsletter is the main source of information you’re looking to get across to your readers. It is where your messages start and finish and it is crucial that you get it right.

When you do get it right, you can drive your reader to the key information that they should pay attention to. Not only that but also the choice of typeface(s) determines how the content is viewed, not just what it says.

Using Fonts in Your Newsletter

Here is a breakdown of the key elements of typography usage within your newsletter:

Header Fonts
By definition, header fonts should stand out the most, as their importance dictates that they will draw your reader into the article or feature. They should be clear, concise, easy to read and quick to scan to ensure that they can be read

You can use bold type or you could consider underlining or simply a larger font size to ensure that the heading stands out.

Sub Titles / Callouts
Sub titles or introductory callouts are often the next part of text your reader sees. The font choice and font style used here should complement the main heading, but be careful not overpower it.

Options here could include using a thinner version of the main headline font or a different font altogether such as a serif alongside a sans serif or vice versa for contrast. Some clients opt for a more informal type style for their subheadings such as a handwritten or softer font.

Body Text
The body text is where the bulk of your content will appear and so it is absolutely critical that you get this part right. The size of type within the body of your newsletter articles are normally much smaller than either headlines or subtitles and so should be easy to read even at this lower size.

The key to successful body text is maintaining consistency and simplicity. By keeping it simple and ensuring your body copy is legible, easy to read and looks stylish, you will improve the engagement level with your readers.

Finally, avoid blocks of content that are presented in all capital letters or resist the temptation to apply bold to large areas of text even when wanting them to stand out. Doing either of these things can make the text hard to read which in turn deter your reader.