A Practical Guide To Writing Awesome Email Copy
Writing awesome email copy requires a different perspective than used for composing either traditional formats or those for social media, which rely on tweets and Facebook/LinkedIn-derived sources. What's important is understanding how emails work as a means of communication, and using that knowledge to reach your audience.
People online want dependable information delivered quickly. Although emails may occasionally need to be lengthy, keep messages short and to the point whenever you can.
For instance, regarding headlines, those for email tend to be shorter (ideally, 5 or words of less) and perhaps more specified (niche-oriented) than headlines for paper (newspaper, snail-mail) or even social media sources. And, after the headlines have been selected, message deliverability is an issue. Spam filters can keep email from reaching your audience but perhaps more of a barrier are the filters readers themselves use to determine whether they'll read your content. They will, if you generate copy sufficiently awesome to merit their attention.
Tips for delivering this truly awesome email copy include:
• Think readability -- Emails that take too long making their point lose readers often intimidated by large blocks of texts; short paragraphs separated by blank lines work best. Awesome email copy demonstrates an immediacy of content that lets readers know what's going on. If the email is lengthy, bold your key-points, use underlining, italics or colored text to distinguish the central theme or major ideas of your message, in a way that stimulates reader interest and enthusiasm, as well as specifying for them keywords useful to any subsequent searches the message motivates
• Create a Dialogue -- Especially when engaging in content marketing via email, the tenor of your message and the language you use to present it must be carefully considered. Subject matter largely defines how you tell your story. But, regardless of the message – educational, political, social – the tenor of your language can encourage further exploration or discourage readers entirely.
To this extent, creating a dialogue with readers (potential friends, customers, voters, etc.) not only engages an audience, but offers them the empowerment of response, which can lead to purchase, brand loyalty or just abiding interest in your subject matter. Awesome email copy inspires interest and commentary, and can frequently be based on both, as well.
Don't write in capitals only; this seems to readers like you're shouting at them and working too hard to make your point (a real turn-off). Conversely, all lower-case letters does not seem spontaneous and tantalizingly informal; rather it comes across as the musing of an unmotivated undergraduate. Write to readers' level, and as your equals. Creating a dialogue gets readers involved.
• Encourage Personalized Response -- You'll want a hook that promotes reader response. Think the opening guitar riff of a great rock song, or a memorable chorus everyone continues singing internally after the number's finished. Any sense of urgency you try to stimulate needs to be relevant from the subject line and maintained throughout the message.
Similarly, consistency of content establishes personalized response, particularly if it appeals to the distinct aspects of your audience's interests. You may need to divide your already segmented audience into further niches, and devise slightly different, more personalized messages designed to appeal to each one. This will require further brainstorming on your part. But it'll be worth the effort.
And remember: When it comes to awesome email copy, brevity and relevancy are key. Include only the most valuable and important text. This reduces the effort your readers must make to understand and decide upon the value of your message to them. Stay focused, and leave your novel for your editor.