We are in the process of testing some product ideas in a random hair loss niche ( I will be posting a blog post on the actual process and results very soon). As a part of it we have been learning a lot about copywriting, what makes a great sales copy but also an email copy.
Let’s face it, we live in a world of information overload. An estimated 294 billion emails are sent every single day. In the United States, about 6 billion text messages are sent by smartphone users every day. There are more than 644 million active websites on the Internet. And every one of these things are vying for our attention, along with thousands of other distractions that make it difficult for any one message to stand out.
But that’s exactly what copywriters need to learn how to do, especially when using email to do things like generate business, sell products, increase traffic, build brand awareness, or anything else that is going to ultimately add to the bottom line.
I am a big fun of MindValley and they have tonnes of incredible information for free at their MindValley Insights Site which you can check out here. Looking for quick actionable information as I started writing my copy i come across this video 12-step process for making the most of email messages you send to promote your business from Mindvalley founder and CEO Vishen Lakhiani .
Here is a run down of these 12 critical lessons which you can apply straight away to create an incredible copy. Also as recommended by Vishen I use it as a checklist for all my copy-writing emails.
1. Know Your Audience
Before you start hammering away at the keyboard to get the message out about your new product, special event, or mind-altering epiphany, make sure you know your audience. If you’re communicating with highly-skilled brain surgeons about a new surgical device for the operating room, you’re going to address them differently than reaching out to skateboarders to highlight a new style of wheels. Before you craft your message, take some time to think like your audience and learn to speak their language.
2. Personalize Your Messages
If you’re planning a massive e-mail campaign, you can’t get around the fact that the same message will go out to the thousands on your list. But that doesn’t mean you can’t personalize it, says Lakhiani. Consider writing specific emails for the same campaign, but tailor them to target people with a specific interest, by gender, or by location. And when appropriate, use the recipients first name in the body of your message. Research shows that when you personalize your message, open rates increase. But don’t overdo it. Research also shows that too much personalization decreases open rates.
3. Use Images
It’s kind of a no-brainer these days. If you a media consumer, you’re almost been programmed to expect visual imagery to go with any form of communication. It’s almost expected with blogs and social media. And e-mail readers are no different. They’re more engaged when the text of an email is complemented by visual images. Look for ways to add images that might generate curiosity and encourage readers to click and continue to your website. Vishen said they’ve experimented with this at Mindvalley, and found that emails with text and images perform better than text-only messages.
4. Include A Call to Action
Or two, or three, Vishen suggests. Your call to action might be the classic, “Click here, buy now.” But it doesn’t have to be that direct. Even including hyperlinks to articles and resources in your e-mail acts as a kind of call to action that engages the recipient beyond simply reading the text of the message.
5. Use a Sign-Off
Listen to a radio broadcast or watch the news on TV, and the reporter will always sign off with a signature statement like: “This is John Doe reporting for Channel 2 News.” And you should use a similar kind of signature sign-off in your e-mails. Don’t just close your email with “Sincerely, Company X.” Vischen recommends signing off as yourself and include your name. It helps the reader develop a better connection with you compared to the generic “Thank you from the customer support team.”
6. Revisit the Purpose of Your Message with a P.S. Line
Before you hit the send button, take a minute to include a P.S. line in your email. Don’t make it a long, novel-length letter. Just condense your message into some bite-sized morsel with a link that directs them to a page you want them to visit. It’s one more way to capture the attention of an already-busy reader and engage them in your message.
7. Keep E-Mail Subject Lines Short
If you want to improve the open rates of your e-mails, make it a priority to keep your subject lines short. In a recent marketing study, researchers found that shorter subject line messages get higher open rates. Lakhiani recommends keeping subject line messages within the range of 4 to 15 characters. And tantalizing messages like “You’re not alone,” “Check this out,” “A powerful idea (video inside),” can really improve the effectiveness of your email campaigns.
8. Make it Personal
Lakhiani suggests approaching your emails from the perspective of talking to a friend. Find ways to make your email message conversational, like you’re telling a friend a story about your weekend or some experience you had. What they don’t need is another form-letter sounding message that will put them to sleep about what makes your company or product so amazing.
9. Connect Subjects to Engage More People
In some cases, you’ll be trying to promote or draw attention to more than one thing in your message. Look for ways to connect topics and help the reader make sense of what’s in it for them if for spending the time to read your message. Point out the value they can receive by following through with the calls to action you’ve presented.
10. Incorporate Current Events
After you’ve taken some time to understand your audience, you can spice up your email messages by incorporating current events or hot topics important to them. Read the news, trade journals, or industry publications, follow the message boards and feeds that your contacts follow. Then look for ways to mention those hot topics in your message. Lakhiani says this practice plays on the emotions of people who are already interested in those hot topics and captures their attention.
11. Be Entertaining
Not many people would consider product warranties or tax code laws interesting to read, so don’t write your email like that. Be entertaining. Lakhiani says adding an element of humor or sarcasm to your emails will improve conversion rates. Do it well, and you’ll train people to look forward to your next email.
12. Leave the Door Open
One more way to maximize your email marketing efforts is to leave the door open. Tease your readers with a tidbit of information, but don’t give it to them right away. Using this approach can create curiosity for your product, event, or announcement and keep people on the edge of their seats waiting to find out what will happen next.
E-mail marketing is still alive and well. And if you want to maximize your efforts, incorporate these 12 tips from guru Vishen Lakhiani to make your email messages sizzle.