The debate over HTML versus plain-text newsletters is still humming. But not at fever pitch. Without going out on a limb, I'd venture that the pendulum has swung toward HTML e-newsletters. They're just plain nicer to read.
But what about PDF newsletters? Sounds retro, but a PDF printed out has... heft, tangibility and a look of authority. Some publishers swear by them.
Paid Newsletters Delivered as Pdfs
It's not at all unusual for a paid subscription newsletter to be issued as a PDF.
A B2C example is Matthew Bennett's First Class Flyer, an insider's guide to unpublished fares for business and first class airline tickets. Bennett delivers his paid monthly PDF publication as a link inside a text message.
A pricey B2B example is IOEnergy's Power Update, daily regional market analysis of the power industry. IOEnergy sends PDFs as attachments, according to founder Tod Sedgwick. He told me that subscribers, who pay up to $1,000 annually for the daily updates, don't mind. They want to avoid the “extra click” to download the PDF.
(See links, below, to samples of these publications.)
Free e-Newsletters in PDF Format… Another Choice