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3 big lessons Gareth Southgate (and his waistcoat) can teach you about writing a successful newsletter

Euros fever is sweeping the continent once again, and this weekend, you will have had your first chance to see England in action. Though there were glimpses of greatness, the 1-0 victory over Serbia wasn’t exactly convincing – it looks like Gareth Southgate still has some work to do.

Despite never “bringing it home”, Gareth Southgate is England’s most successful manager since the World Cup-winning Alf Ramsey. But all good things must come to an end, and the 2024 Euros are expected to be his final tournament as manager of the Three Lions.

Though he has his critics, Southgate is universally recognised as a great communicator. His down-to-earth mannerisms have helped to build a feeling of togetherness both within the England squad and the country as a whole.

At Yardstick, we help financial planners communicate with their clients through articles and newsletters. And, if you’re thinking of setting up a newsletter to foster your client relationships, there’s a lot you can learn from Gareth Southgate and his communication style.

So, read on to discover three lessons England’s manager – and his famous waistcoat – can teach you about producing successful newsletters.

1. Stories draw people in

Southgate’s tenure has been laced with fascinating storylines. Perhaps the most notable of these stories began long before he became a manager.

As a player at Euro 1996, Southgate famously failed to convert in a penalty shootout against Germany, a mistake that would ultimately cost England the match and see them knocked out of the competition.

Subsequently, the Three Lions’ shootout record in the following 20 years was very poor. So, when England’s 2018 World Cup round of 16 match against Colombia was all level after 120 minutes, the nation didn’t hold out much hope for the ensuing penalty shootout.

Yet, England would come out on top, and the burden Southgate had been carrying since ’96 was lifted from his shoulders – a redemption story 22 years in the making.

Southgate was gracious in victory. After the game, the manager was photographed consoling Colombian players as they experienced emotions very similar to those Southgate himself would have felt all those years before – a touching full-circle moment.

People love human narratives like this. So, if you’re starting a newsletter, consider sharing some personal stories from you and your team. “Team news” updates give your clients a glimpse of the human side of your business and could help you foster a stronger connection with them.

2. A signature style can help you stand out

During the 2018 World Cup, Gareth Southgate’s fashion sense attracted nearly as many headlines as his team’s performances on the pitch.

The England manager’s waistcoat became instantly iconic, and men up and down the nation rushed to steal his look. Indeed, the Guardian reports that demand for M&S waistcoats rose 35% thanks to the “Gareth Southgate effect”.

Since then, as each major tournament comes around, Southgate’s clothing choices have always been a topic of conversation. At this year’s Euros, the manager has opted for a zip-up polo shirt. This latest outfit hasn’t generated as much buzz as his M&S waistcoat, but it’s still a recognisable, decidedly Southgate look.

Though it may be difficult to express your fashion sensibilities through your monthly newsletter, there are other ways to convey your personality.

You can let your voice shine through the topics you write about. For example, if you enjoy the outdoors, and you know that many of your clients do as well, consider writing articles about activities like hiking and other outdoor pursuits. This will likely grab your audience’s interest and make creating your newsletter a more enjoyable experience for you.

3. Seek support where you need it

There is perhaps no more daunting job in world football than being the England manager. Decades of trophyless competitions, wasted golden generations, and bitter disappointment have created a weight of expectation that would be too much for many people to bear.

As an ex-England player, Southgate would have been more aware of this than most when he accepted the job, but he embraced the responsibility. Though he’s yet to win a competition, in the eyes of many England fans, he has been a great success.

He’s led England to both a semi-final and a final and, perhaps most importantly, has created a feel-good factor around the national team that had been missing for years.

However, he hasn’t achieved all this on his own. Throughout his tenure, Southgate has had a team of backroom staff to help him coach players, develop strategies and much more.

Key figures like Steve Holland and Martyn Margetson have provided invaluable assistance, stepping up to do the things that Southgate himself couldn’t, and contributing to England’s success.

If you need extra assistance communicating with your clients, our team at The Yardstick Agency can write you a successful newsletter that grabs your clients’ attention month after month. Find out how we can help you by emailing or calling 0115 8965 300.

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