Federation of American Aquarium Societies Federation of American Aquarium Societies Federation of American Aquarium Societies

If your club has been around for a few years, you probably have well over 100 issues of your publication. In a lot of cases, these publication only exist on paper. Either they were created before the desktop publishing revolution in the early 1990's, or perhaps the orginals have been lost.

Whatever the case, your members would love to have access to this information. The best format to use is Adobe's ubiquitous PDF format.

Using the PDF image+text option, you can maintain an exact "photocopy" of the page with an invisible layer of searchable text. Acrobat can do the OCR (Optical Character Recognition) necessary for this format.

Rick Borstein, FAAS President

Your publication is your not-so-secret weapon in working with local fish stores (LFS).
An ad from a local pet store with a coupon could generate a lot of business for them.

Should you charge for ads?

Some clubs do not charge for ads.  Ads are often a way to generate good will with local pet stores. In exchange for running the ad, the club receives the ability to place marketing materials in the store.

Larger clubs with more expensive publications may charge for ads. Some societies accept product donations in lieu of cash. The product donation could be raffled off or auctioned to generate revenue for the club.

By Richard Forcier

I thought I would share some of the information I've picked up so far in my short stint as an Editor. After all, I don't expect to be doing it forever!


Publish the best possible bulletin and mail it in time to announce your society’s next regular meeting.
The bulletin is an excellent vehicle for distributing society news. It's also good for increasing membership, publicizing the society, gathering information on fish and exchanging ideas with other clubs.

Rick Borstein, FAAS Webmaster

Several years ago, at a Greater Chicago Cichlid Association meeting, I posed the question—should we eliminate printing the Cichlid Chatter, the club newsletter, and distribute it electronically?

As I expected, the result was an emphatic “No way!” to exclusively distributing the newsletter electronically. However, everyone wanted to be able to have access to back issues on our web site and considered the Cichlid Chatter to be a valuable part of the club. 

Fast forward ten years later and nobody has a problem with electronic distribution. In fact, we don't even print a newsletter anymore. We now make it available in a members-only area on our website.