8. Use proven response-boosting techniques. Add urgency with response deadlines and phrases such as "call now" and "sign up today." Increase the value of your publication with premiums, value-added offers, prize drawings, guarantees and endorsements.

9. When in doubt, test. Split-run testing is simple and cost-effective. Consider testing different offers, copy approaches, survey questions, mailing lists and formats.

10. Measure readership. Conduct an initial readership survey after the third issue for a quarterly publication or after the fifth issue for a bimonthly one. Subsequent surveys should be conducted every 12-18 months.

11. Track response. Custom publications can do more than just enhance your corporate image and educate your audience - they can contribute to the bottom line. Establish procedures to track all leads and sales generated by your program. Assign an individual to tabulate replies as requests are fulfilled, add fake extensions to track phone responses, and use coupons or certificates to track walk-ins.

12. Share results. By sharing readership and response results with the people involved in creating your publication, you can ensure that your program will continue to improve with each issue.

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