2023 Excellence in Newsletters, Portfolio winner

Iowa Public Radio

About the Project

Iowa Public Radio has developed a five-newsletter newsletter portfolio, largely in the last 16 months, to reach new digital audiences. Each newsletter serves a designated audience or interest, and is a fully-developed product designed to meet the audience’s needs without leaving their inbox. The whole portfolio has individual donation opportunities as well as advertising capabilities, with each newsletter generating revenue via sponsored events, display ads, or sponsored content. There’s truly something for everyone within our newsletter portfolio:

• Daily Digest: Our core weekday newsletter, Daily Digest gives readers the day’s top news as they start their evening. Designed for daily news consumers, content comes from the Iowa Public Radio news team, NPR, and IPR digital editors.
• All Access: For the serious music fan, we curate live concerts, festivals, and music news, and feature Iowa artists and new music. This weekly music newsletter drops Thursdays – Just in time for the audience to choose the shows they want to attend or music they want to explore on their weekend. Local music features are written by music producers, digital producers, and a network of contributors across Iowa.
• Political Sense: This weekly newsletter helps readers follow the legislative session, campaigns, caucuses, and other political happenings in Iowa. With a focus on politics, policy, and governance, it helps the audience keep up with the rapid pace of politics and better understand its impact.
• Garden Variety: IPR has a strong, loyal fanbase of gardeners and brings them biweekly advice to get the most out of their garden, lawn, and landscape. It’s more a community than an audience, with regular contributions from our readers, asking questions, sharing photos, and celebrating the outdoors.
• Chatter: Designed as an easier entry point to Iowa Public Radio, Chatter is lighter and more informal in both content and tone. This Saturday morning read offers recommendations, things to do, and news – including some odd news – for the weekend.

The samples provided exhibit the tone, writing style, content and intent that makes each newsletter unique. The entire portfolio is coordinated and written by our Newsletter Product Manager, who works with different editors, reporters, producer, hosts, and contributors – based on subject expertise – to craft newsletter content specific to each audience and deliver it in a unique voice.

Judges Comments

An impressive portfolio of diverse newsletters for specific audiences, built in a short period of time with a strong strategic focus. Judges loved this portfolio because it shows that a small but mighty team can harness the power of newsletters and create audience-forward offerings to support and inform its community.