To keep your subscribers happy and to encourage them to share your company and newsletter with others they may know, it helps to develop a personal, but professional, relationship with your subscribers. If people have voluntarily opted to join your list, it means that something you are offering is of interest to them. Therefore, it is important to build a human relationship with them, but this should be kept fundamentally professional in nature.
Even enormous multinational corporations have come to realize that adding a personal – human – touch to their communications with their clients helps to build a stronger and more stable relationship. The days of the non-personal form letter response have mostly ended with the exception of a few industries and government agencies that have monopolies and know you have no alternative provider to turn to (think of utility companies and government agencies).
At the same time, you do not want to go to the opposite extreme of being too close and personal, talking all about your personal issues and generally coming off as unprofessional. The people subscribing to your list knew they were joining a promotional list primarily concerned with selling some product or service that they are interested in. This means they are not interested in hearing about your day in the traffic standstill or the details of your divorce settlement. They want to hear information related to whatever they signed up for. There can be a fine line between being professional and being personable.
One key feature of building a relationship with your subscribers should be your punctuality in responding to queries made by your subscribers. You should always respond as soon as is possible and consider this a priority. If you opt to use an auto responder for when you are unavailable, be sure not to use the formal form letter that is the default of most auto responders. Instead create a customized response that is friendly and personal, but professional.
Though acceptable language and the like may differ in different industries and fields, most of the time it is suggested that you respond as though you were talking to a close, but rather prudish, friend. Keep away from profanity, abusive language, or controversial topics (like religion or politics). Otherwise though, be sure to present yourself as someone your subscribers like and want to be associated with.