How to Write an Email Marketing Letter

Receive. Read subject. Delete. These actions can be carried out by your user in less than two seconds. So why did you spend 20 minutes preparing what you thought was a carefully worded email that tackled all the right points?

Read on to find out more.
Website Marketing

Increasing Importance in E-Commerce — Get it Right!

Understanding how your readers think is vital to getting your email opened, read and actioned. There are many traps to avoid when crafting your email communications in order for them to cut through the overwhelming amount people receive daily. The ease at which emails can be sent by businesses often attributes to the low quality of the communications.

People’s time is increasingly limited and when they do read a message, it needs to be relevant, fact based, of interest and high quality. If you are sending mediocre emails to your newsletter recipients, they are going to learn that their time is possibly better spent elsewhere. Eventually they will stop reading them and potentially unsubscribe, never to return.

So how can you write effective marketing emails?

Start with the three most important items:

  • Subject Line – Be focussed. A relevant subject line identifies what the email is about and should entice the reader to open it. If you don’t get it right at this stage, it is all for nothing.
  • First Line – A strong first line in the email body will summarise its content and highlight exactly what the reader will gain from investing their time in the rest of the communication. This is where the ‘point’ of the email is made.
  • Post Script (p.s.) – Here, you can offer the reader a special gift, discount or recap an important element of the communication.

If we consider the above mandatory, the following are strong suggestions.

14 Further Items for Consideration

  • First things first – The most important idea should be mentioned first and ultimately capture the main benefit the recipient will receive by reading the email.
  • One subject – Email marketing messages should ultimately be based on a single subject. For instance, one that runs through an entire range of products is likely to be too long, contain irrelevant information and possibly be convoluted.
  • Formatting – Use bullet points, bold, italics, underline and colour etc to make the important details stand out. It breaks up blocks of text which can turn readers off. It also makes the message less dry and more visually stimulating.
  • Use the right tone of voice – You don’t want the message to be too formal or too casual. The feel of the email needs to be established to suit the company’s image and the idea being conveyed.
  • Ensure you hit the target audience – What is the age and demographics of your readers? The way you communicate with a 20 year old will differ to an individual 50 and over. It’s highly unlikely that ‘everyone’ will be your target audience so this needs to be clarified.
  • Use the word ‘you’ a lot – It’s all about ‘you’, the customer. What benefits ‘you’ will receive and how ‘you’ can enrich your life. It’s not about ‘us’ or ‘we’ the business.
  • Headlines – By containing headings and subheadings, people scan for parts of the message that are relevant to them. With limited time, the person viewing can ‘get the gist’ of the message by reading the headings and subheadings.
  • The offer – What do you want the customers to buy? Explicitly tell them (and early on) instead of them having to unnecessarily wade through the entire email.
  • Identify the benefits – Hook them in. What are they getting? Why do they care? How will their life be better by reading your email and purchasing what you have to offer?
  • The communication should be succinct – Not necessarily just short in length, the communication should convey the message using as few words as possible.
  • Introduce a special offer such as a FREE report or sample – Everyone likes something for FREE and people are attracted when they believe they are getting more value.
  • Add an offer deadline to create urgency – Eg. Domain name┬ásale – one day only! This offer expires this weekend so act now! It will advertise a ‘window of opportunity’ for getting this ‘great deal’ instead of the email being forgotten in their inbox.
  • An obvious call to action – You want people to do something so tell them ‘how’ they can do it. Phone, email, come into the shop, click the order button etc.
  • Unsubscribe – If emailing a newsletter listing or group, always ensure there is an unsubscribe link in the message. Readers should have the option to stop receiving communications. No one likes SPAM!

p.s.  The power of email marketing is huge. But like anything, incorrectly used and it produces less than spectacular results. By following the above guidelines, you can experience a better result from a more focussed marketing email.

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