Writing Better E-Newsletters
Since email can be so affordable, it’s often the first attempt at “real” marketing that small businesses make. Unfortunately, small businesses aren’t necessarily writing experts. Instead of thinking, “Hmm, how would XYZ company write this email?” you should stop and ask, “Hmm, what would my customers find useful in my email?” Don’t use pushy sales copy, like “BUY NOW!!” or “LIMITED TIME OFFER!!” in email. It’s obnoxious. Plus, Spam filters will penalize you for using what they consider “spammy” content. Be a source of good information, not the salesperson and you will get better response.
How to Avoid Spam
Spam filters look at a long list of criteria to decide whether or not an email is junk. These items are almost always on their lists of spammy criteria:
- Going crazy with exclamation points!!!!!!
- USING ALL CAPS BECAUSE IT’S LIKE YELLING IN AN EMAIL
- Coding sloppy HTML (usually from converting a Microsoft Word file to HTML)
- Coloring fonts bright red or green
- Using the word “test” in the subject line
- Creating an HTML email that’s nothing but one big image, with little or no text
Personalise Your Campaigns
Subject lines are you main headline and will ultimately determine whether your campaign is
opened or not. There is nothing more engaging for a reader than to see his or her own name. Use personalization in the subject line and inside the body of the email. Do not over use this technique or it may have the reverse effect. The subject line is like the front door – make it attractive to open.
Keep your subject lines short… generally, shorter email subject lines produce higher open and click- through rates. Use this free online “Email Subject Line Tester” tool to help you to help develop effective, compelling subject lines that withstand sophisticated SPAM filters.
Write to one person – Everyone relates to WIIFM (What’s In It For Me), so try to think of the ideal prospect as you are
writing and personalise that message just for them. Even if your email or website will be read by thousands of people each day — every person will read it one at a time. Use “you” and “your” liberally. Focus on them, not you.
K.I.S.A (Keep It Simple ALWAYS)
Keep your sentences and paragraphs short and simple. It’s always a good rule of thumb to keep any solo broadcasts to a maximum of 150 words. When writing articles for an Enewsletter just include the first paragraph and link through to your website or blog to read more……the benefits are outstanding.
Convey your message in a clear and concise manner – Be ruthless when editing your email campaign and include lots of white space to make it inviting. Long blocks of words are scary, so keep your writing simple and to the point. You don’t like long emails or want to spend all day reading something – nor does your reader.
Follow the 3-link rule – When writing your “solo email” campaign, include your CTA (call to action) link at least 3 times within your 150 words. Try one at the beginning, next in the main body and one towards the end or even in the P.S (if you use this). Experiment and alternate between the full URL website address such as www.takeactionnow.com and a hyperlinked call to action like. Go ahead and take action now!
Don’t use the same old call to action and tell them to “click here”: Try using some fresh alternatives like “read the full story”, “learn more about it” “download this special report now”, “save 20% immediately” and so on.
In summary, follow this 3-Step Proven Formula for maximum results
1. Here is what I have got – Be clear about your offering and get to the point.
2. Here is what it will do for YOU – make sure you highlight the benefits they receive immediately
3. Here is what to do next – A simple call to action related to the benefits
And of course, there is always the other option: outsource your E-newsletters.