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We Signed Up for 12 Products: Here’s What We Learned About Sales Email Subject Lines

An email subject line packs a powerful punch (or at least it should). With the amount of emails the average worker receives a day (121 daily emails on average!), you need to grab the readers of your sales emails quickly. Instead of viewing the limited characters of a subject line as a challenge, view it as an opportunity.
Here are sales email subject lines lessons from twelve companies to help you do just that.
Make the message personal
Accenture found that “75% of customers are more likely to spend their hard-earned money with brands that recognize them by name and remember information about them.” Use this desire to your advantage with sales email subject lines.
Include the contact’s name
According to The Washington Post, a “person’s name is the greatest connection to their own identity and individuality.” Using a contact’s name in an email subject line has the same effect as it would in a personal conversation — it establishes a personal connection between the contact and company.

Alexa’s email subject line
Another personalization tactic is to use the contact’s first and last names. Mailchimp found that, although including both first and last names in a subject is less common, it has the largest positive impact on open rates.
Use the word “you”
Too often, our inboxes are slammed full of formal email subject lines, which ultimately sound salesy. Cut through the formal clutter and sound friendly instead. One tactic is to address the recipient using the second person — “you.”

Wistia‘s email subject line
Subject lines like “Are you ready?” “Have you tried XYZ?” are simple, but effective. This tactic makes you sound less formal and more conversational.
Customize your subject line
A report by Silverpop found that 50% of recipients unsubscribe to email lists because the content they receive is not relevant to them and they don’t have any interest in learning about it. Along with using the prospect’s name, take advantage of email segmentation through segmented lists and CRM third-party integrations (e.g., Mailchimp) to create customized email subject lines that individually speak to every prospect’s needs.

Chameleon’s email subject line
Start by organizing your email list by customer demographics, pain points, etc. Then, divide the customers in each segment according to their purchase stage. For example, if a small financial company is in the pre-purchase stage, create a subject line about “X best blog posts for finance startups.”
Use few words
Wordiness has been the death of many a subject line — people have short attention spans, and long subject lines beg to be skimmed over. Shorter, concise subject lines are not only easier to read, but they also have a higher open rate because they grab the reader’s attention in the inbox.
Write 41-character subject lines
Short subject lines are also easier to read on a mobile device. According to Convince & Convert, 35% of business professionals check email on smartphones and tablets. The number of characters shown depends on the device, but most people view emails on iPhones and Gmail, which show between 41 to 70 characters.
According to Marketo, 41 characters (or 7 words) is the best length for an email subject line, but you can also use fewer. With the average subject line being about 51 characters, your shorter subject lines will have a better chance of standing out.
Compare these two subject lines:

Get ready for our amazing product upgrade this summer to XYZ 4.0: Sign up today!
Are you ready for XYZ 4.0?

Which subject line are your eyes more drawn to? Most likely the second one, because you can see the whole message right off the bat.

PandaDoc‘s email subject line
Another tip? Think about using sentence-case rather than title-case. “Congrats on your Series B funding!” is much easier to read (and less spammy looking) than “Congrats On Your Series B Funding!”
Pique the reader’s curiosity
By nature, humans are curious. Convey that you have something the reader doesn’t and give them a reason to want to open your email. A few ways to capture your reader’s attention is to ask a question, share number-based facts, and speak to a reader’s pain point.
Ask a question
You don’t have to give away everything about the email in the subject line. Instead, ask a question that hints at the nature of the content. A question makes the reader want to know the answer and fill their knowledge gap. Questions also sound like an actual human conversation and not computer-generated messages.

FollowUp‘s email subject line
Simple questions such as “Want to build a startup faster?” are thought-provoking and intriguing without giving away too much.
Share data-based insights
Yesware found that subject lines with hard numbers have higher open and reply rates. Build the prospect’s trust in your company by backing up your claims with data. Talk with marketing about using your company’s original data to develop data-based content.
For example, if your company offers e-Signatures, find out how many of your clients use it to sign documents instead of signing paper documents that must be printed and mailed or scanned and emailed. A possible subject line could be “Decrease time to sign by XX%.”

CoSchedule’s email subject line
If you don’t have a bunch of original data to work with, be creative with numbers. For example, “The 3 step guide to social selling,” or “6 ways to improve content marketing” can also be effective.
Convey a pain point
Prospects don’t care about your company’s accomplishments as much as they want to know what you can do for them. How can your product/service solve their problem? Prove in the subject line that you’ve done your research on the prospect and recognize what their business struggles with.

Appcues’ email subject line
Other possible subject lines include “X blogs for [Pain Point]” or “How to improve [Pain Point].” This type of subject line makes you seem more customer-centric than product-centric, which helps set the right tone for a future customer relationship.
Share valuable information
If the reader feels like there’s a gap in their knowledge base, they’re more likely to click your email. First, use tools like a CRM to understand your audience. What questions are current customers asking customer support? What are their main pain points? Then, use this information to craft helpful emails/subject lines.
Be direct
You don’t have to be crazy creative with subject lines. If you’re offering something of value, let the content speak for itself. Share the exact benefit the reader will gain from opening your email in the subject line.

Chargify’s email subject line
“Introducing the 2019 Social Selling Report” or “[Your Company] Video Content Marketing Guide” are subject lines that get straight to the point and convey exactly what the reader will receive.
Continue the value
Have you ever bought something online that promised to be amazing, but when you received the item in the mail, it didn’t even match the description? Disappointing to say the least. An email works the exact same way. Make sure that the body of your email delivers what the subject line promised to the reader.

Airtable‘s email subject line
Above all, don’t trick your readers with subject line clickbait. If your subject line says that you’ll be sharing “10 tricks on how to improve employee retention,” ensure that the content meets the expectations that the subject line sets up.
Experiment with the language
Word choice matters. For example, the subject line “Crush your social selling techniques” is more likely to be opened over “How to social sell.” Weave together words in a way that’s both intriguing and direct. And avoid words like “free” in your subject lines — it has been shown to lower email open rates.
Create a sense of urgency
Urgent subject lines have been shown to increase open rates by 22%.Mailchimp also found that including words like “urgent” and “important” result in higher open rates. For example, “Last chance to sign up” suggests that the reader will miss out if they don’t click on your message.

YNAB’s email subject line
Like YNAB, imply time sensitivity to your messages to increase the open rate.
Thank the recipient
Everyone appreciates being appreciated, so it’s not surprising that saying thank you increases email open rates (e.g., “I wanted to say thank you…” or “Thank you for —”). By showing gratitude, you forge a closer bond with the recipient.

Zendesk Sell’s email subject line
Combine with the contact’s name to make the subject line even more personal: “[Contact Name], thank you!”
Give alliterations a try
If used correctly, alliterations (the repetition of consonant sounds, e.g., The Subscription of the Season) can help make your subject line memorable. Even just a couple of words that work well together can eliminate the monotony of an email. “Want to master memorable marketing?” or “Get your startup financially fit” are a couple of examples.

CB Insights‘ email subject line
Granted, you have to be careful with this tactic (it’s easy to overdo). Experiment with different word pairings and find what sounds best for your brand.
Improve your sales email subject lines
Chadwick Martin Bailey found that the subject line is what drives people to open an email 64% of the time. When crafting your subject lines, place yourself in the reader’s shoes. What message would make you want to open the email?
Use a CRM to compile and automatically send your sales emails. Also, experiment with A/B testing with your sales email subject lines. Do some subject lines get a higher click rate than others? If certain subject lines aren’t working, refer to this article again and try something new the next time.
No matter your target audience, be customer-focused with every sales email starting with the subject line.

12 Sales Email Templates for Every Stage of the Sales Pipeline

Email is a daily activity for most sales reps. But did you know that only 9 percent of sales emails are even opened? Your potential customers are receiving a flood of generic emails every day.
Your emails need to stand out among the crowd. From prospecting to closing, we’ve created a sales email template for every sales pipeline stage — all templates include engaging subject lines, an interesting body, and personalization to help you attract and retain more customers.
Note: We used a fictional company name for each email — Better Bookkeeping Software — but you can adapt to your own company name and messaging.
1. Get a prospect’s attention
Prospecting emails are your first shot at making a good impression on a potential customer. Send emails that interest the reader at first glance starting with the subject line. Write it as a question or include the subject’s first name — make it personal and inviting.
Cold email template
Subject Line: Available for a chat?

Hi [Contact First Name],
Love what you guys are doing at [Prospect’s Business]! With all of the startups you work with, do you need assistance with [Pain Point]? With tools like Better Bookkeeping Software, you can easily organize and track customer payment info, even on the go.
Would you be available for a 15-minute chat this week?
Thank you for your time,[Your Name]Better Bookkeeping Software, Sales Representative[Number]

When to use it: Use this sales email template when you’ve received an email address through gated content, marketing, etc. Indicate that you’ve done your homework and have an idea of what the company’s needs are — bonus if you include a link at the end that proves your worth such as an impressive video or press release (e.g., “Better Bookkeeping improves XX Company’s efficiency with revolutionary software”).
Introductory email template
Subject Line: Free Trial of Bookkeeping Software

Hi [Contact First Name],
I noticed your question on [Social Media Platform] about the best bookkeeping software and thought I would reach out. Investing in the right bookkeeping software is important for startups like yours and requires [list out something like requirement criteria].
Better Bookkeeping Software offers a free trial that gives insight into your current payment operations. Please let me know if you would like to give it a try!
Best regards,[Your Name]

When to use it: The prospect is asking questions online that pertain to your product/service such as on Quora and LinkedIn groups. Or maybe you found the prospect on a site like AngelList. Either way, this template is great if your company offers a free trial of your product/service. It gives the prospect the opportunity to try your offering, no strings attached. No free trial? Ask the prospect if you can set up a demo time instead.
Warm email template
Subject Line: Nice meeting you, [Prospect Name]

Hi [Contact First Name],
It was great chatting with you on [Day]! Based on our conversation on/at [information on where you met such as an event or social media platform], I wanted to reach out and share a bit more information about Better Bookkeeping Software’s offerings and how it can help your company with [XYZ].
Our platform is an excellent tool for startups like yours because of features like these:
Feature 1Feature 2Feature 3
Would you be available for a 15-minute call this week to discuss how Better Bookkeeping can help [Prospect Company Name]?
Thank you,[Your Name]

When to use it: A warm email should be sent when you’ve already had an interaction with the prospect at an event or on social media. Send as quickly as possible, so your interaction is still fresh on their minds. If you received their contact info via a referral or mutual connection, adjust the first sentence as needed and the subject line to read something like “[Referral] suggested I contact you.”
Prospect follow-up email template
Subject Line: X blog posts about [Pain Point]

Hi [Contact First Name],
I wanted to share these blog posts that I believe would be really helpful for [insert prospect pain point such as digital invoices].
Resource 1Resource 2Resource 3Resource 4
If you have a minute to check these posts out, I think the info gives great direction on [topics listed in the blog posts]. Let me know what you think.
Best regards,[Your Name]

When to use it: Use this template when you haven’t received a response to your previous emails. Provide related resources or answers to common industry questions so that you’re perceived as helpful while building rapport with the prospect.
2. Prove that your product/service is the best
Now that the potential customer is interested in your product/service and they’ve been properly qualified, it’s time to offer proof that your product/service is right for them. Send emails that establish your company’s credibility.
Social proof email template
Subject Line: Want to save X% in efficiency costs?

Hello [Prospect Name],
Thanks for taking the time to chat. We’re really excited at the prospect of working with you. As promised, here are some examples of work we’ve done for other customers:
Example 1Example 2Example 3
As you can see from other customers’ success, I believe that Better Bookkeeping can help your company succeed with [Pain Point].
Let me know what questions you have. I’ll follow up by [Insert Date].
Best,[Your Name]

When to use it: Show the product’s/service’s effectiveness (e.g., videos, testimonials, case studies, blog links) and how it has worked for others. Work with marketing on these materials and weave interesting narratives. If you don’t have case studies, source raw data from departments like product success. For example, is the time-to-payment increased with your bookkeeping software?
These types of emails are especially important to convince decision makers — the ones who will be signing on the dotted line to complete the sale. Be sure to include a compelling CTA at the end of the email to push the prospect to the next step.
3. Explain why your product/service is worth the price
Ah, time to discuss terms and prices. From past interactions, the prospect should already have an idea of what your product/service is going to cost. Now it’s time to cover specific offerings based on their needs. Maybe you can offer a special discount or bonus. These conversations should also happen over the phone or in person, but it’s good to have your offer in writing.
Proposal email template 1
Subject Line: Better Bookkeeping Features + Proposal

Hi [Contact Name],
As promised, here is the info on pricing/packaging to meet [Prospect Company Name]‘s needs. Your software package would include:
FeatureFeatureFeaturePrice
Let me know what you think. Next steps would be:
Getting started on the paperworkSpeaking with [Prospect Manager]Onboarding [Company Name]
I’ll plan to follow up in a few days.
Best,[Your Name]

When to use it: Send after the potential customer has expressed serious interest in your product/service and you’ve casually discussed terms. Ask the potential customer if you can clarify anything or if they have any questions. Emphasize the benefits of your product/service and the value the prospect would receive for the price.
4. Seal the deal with persuasive language
You’ve presented all of the information and answered the prospects’ questions. They are close to either purchasing your product/service or going with a competitor. Give them an email offer they can’t refuse.
Closing email template 1
Subject Line: Ready to improve [Pain Point]?

Hi [Prospect Name],
I’m excited that you’re considering Better Bookkeeping Software for [Prospect Company Name]‘s bookkeeping needs! As mentioned, I believe that our software will improve your company’s payment efficiency. For the price of X, [Prospect Company] will receive [List of Benefits].
If there is any more information I can provide or questions I can answer, please let me know. Next steps would be signing the contract and then working with our customer success team to get your clients’ payment information integrated with our software.
[Your Name]

When to use it: Your email message should focus on the benefits that your product/service will bring this specific customer and what it will cost them. It should be short, personal, and summarize information you’ve already shared. Your CTA is also important here — let the prospect know exactly what needs to happen next. The ball is then in their court.
Closing email template 2
Subject Line: [Prospect Name], following up

Hi [Prospect Name],
I haven’t heard from you, so I wanted to follow up. Is [Company Name] still in need of bookkeeping software? Let me know if there are any concerns you have or questions I can answer.
Thank you,[Your Name]

When to use it: Use this sales email template if you haven’t received a response to your previous email. The prospect is either getting cold feet or just forgot to follow up. Don’t be pesky, but try to stay on their radar.
5. Continue the relationship via email
Even if you won the deal, don’t stop sending emails. Customer engagement emails are crucial to customer retention and upsell opportunities. Work closely with marketing to align your email messages.
Welcome email template
Subject Line: Welcome to Better Bookkeeping Software!

Hi [Customer Name],
Excited that your company is now using Better Bookkeeping! I’ve CC’d [Customer Success Name] on this email to help you with onboarding, but I’m still here to answer any questions or concerns you may have.
Here are a few resources to help you get oriented with our software:
Resource 1Resource 2Resource 3
Contact me anytime via email. We look forward to helping [Company Name] with [main function of your product/service].
Best,[Your Name]

When to use it: Send after the deal has been closed. Let the customer know you’re excited that they’ve purchased the product/service. Also, offer your support and convey to the customer that you’re not just handing them off to the customer success department — you’re still there to nurture the relationship.
Resource email template
Subject Line: X blog posts to assist with [Customer Problem]

Hello [Customer Name],
Hope that you’re doing well! My team member Ryan was sharing that you’ve been having difficulty with [Pain Point]. In addition to the software help he provided, I wanted to share a few blog posts related to this topic that would be helpful for [Customer Company Name].
Resource 1Resource 2Resource 3
Let me know if I can answer any questions about these resources or our product in general.
Best,[Your Name]

When to use it: Show the customer that you’re invested in their success and send these types of emails periodically. Offer content such as blog posts that help customers use your product/service to its full potential (ask marketing for material if needed). Follow customers’ interactions with customer service through your CRM if you need ideas on what to send.
These emails also don’t have to be about using your product/service. Include information that helps with the customer’s industry needs (e.g., templates or checklists). Prove that you care about their needs.
Re-connect email template 1
Subject Line: New feature to solve XYZ

Hi [Contact Name],
It’s been awhile since we last chatted…how is everything going at [Prospect Company Name]? Based on our last conversation about [Topic], I think [Your Company Name Feature] could really boost [Prospect Company Name]‘s bookkeeping abilities.
I’d love to provide you with more details. Would you be available for a quick chat or demo this week?
Best regards,[Your Name]

Re-connect email template 2
Subject Line: Can I help with [Pain Point]?

Hi [Contact Name],
I want to reach out and ask how everything is going at [Prospect Company Name]? How is your current bookkeeping solution working out for you?
We’ve recently added some new features to our software that I believe would be really helpful for [Prospect Pain Point]. If you would be interested in a quick chat or demo this week, please let me know or if there are any other ways we can help [Prospect Company Name].
Best,[Your Name]

When to use it: You lost the deal — maybe the prospect decided they didn’t need your service after all or their budget was too low. Or maybe they went with a competitor. Don’t be discouraged. Keep track of the prospect by following them on social media and through press releases. Send another email at a later date (e.g., if they went with a competitor, check back when their subscription is almost up). The prospect already knows who you are — keep your relationship on a good note.
Customize each sales email template
To make your sales email process as easy as possible, use a CRM to automatically send and track email responses through an integration such as Mailchimp. Then, use marketing automation integrations to perform A/B testing and see which subject lines have the highest open rate or response rate. You can also use these same integrations to determine the best times for sending emails to your prospects.
To avoid being a Generic Jane or Jerry with sales emails, customize each template above before sending. No matter what sales stage you or your sales team are in, ensure that your emails to potential and current customers are personal and valuable. Stay away from industry jargon. Emails should be as customer-centric as possible and prove that you care about the customer relationship.

Why Scrum Is Awesome for Project Managers

“I am a project manager. What is my role now that we are moving to Scrum?”
This is a common question in my Professional Scrum classes. It often comes up right after we discuss that there are three roles in Scrum, and project manager is not one of them. In this post, I share my story of discovering Scrum after starting my career as a project manager in a waterfall world. I will conclude with some ideas for project managers to consider for their future.
I started my career in traditional project management (i.e. waterfall). I was good at it, and I enjoyed it. I was able to leverage my organizational and facilitation skills, as well as my ability to be both detail-oriented and see the bigger picture. I enjoyed supporting a team of people, helping them focus on what they are great at.
I was always facilitative in my approach, knowing that I was not the best person to decide how to do the work or solve the problems. I could bring people together and provide the space for them to navigate the complexities as a team.
I accepted that change was going to happen and didn’t try to ignore it or wait until there was a crisis to respond to it. I relied on my facilitation skills and foresight to help teams re-group and determine the path forward with the new information.
I believe both my enabling approach and responsiveness to change led me to success as a project manager.
However, the realities of the over-scheduled and indecisive way organizations plan and execute work created stress and discomfort for me.

There was always pressure to meet a date (even if it was arbitrary).
People were stretched so thin, pressured to do more (and I was expected to be part of applying this pressure).
There was a need to “escalate” constantly because of the conflicting priorities. Everything was an emergency.
I felt like the weight of the world was on my shoulders, even though I didn’t have the ability to do the work, nor the authority to support the people doing the work.

Do organizations really want intelligent and experienced project managers spending their days asking people the percent complete on task XYZ, creating status reports that don’t provide much meaningful information, documenting everything that happens to avoid blame later, and jumping through hoops to get approval to change the plan?
The original purpose of a project manager has gotten lost and diluted over the years.
The Project Management Institute (PMI) describes project managers as “change agents.”
And I believe Scrum is the greatest thing to happen to project managers.
Scrum allows project managers to use their skills and experience in bigger more impactful ways.
Scrum empowers and enables self-organizing and cross-functional Development Teams to be accountable for creating releasable product Increments. They don’t need a project manager to tell them what to do and track their progress. And having a “Done” Increment means we can stop pretending that 85% complete means anything.
Scrum creates the conditions that force organizations to make choices about what work will be done and in what order. The Product Owner is a single person with both the authority and accountability to make decisions to maximize product value, which are made transparent through an ordered Product Backlog.
A Scrum Master helps protect and maximize benefits of the empirical process and supports a Scrum Team in becoming healthy, while embodying agility to the organization.
If you are a project manager wondering what your role is, you have options.

Become a Product Owner. Does your passion and experience lean towards understanding and driving business value and collaborating with stakeholders?
Become a Development Team member. Does your passion and experience lean towards doing the work to create the product? Remember, this isn’t just about writing code. A Development Team includes all of the skills to create releasable product Increments, including business process, quality, user experience, data, and much more.
Become a Scrum Master. Does your passion and experience lean towards growing healthy teams and helping people embrace empiricism and continuous improvement?
Continue to be a project manager. Essentially, this makes you a stakeholder, and Scrum does not explicitly describe the responsibilities of stakeholders because it is dependent on context. A project manager may support Scrum Teams and the wider organization. What this looks like will vary based on the product, business, initiative, etc. (I will write a future post to explore this further.)

I encourage you to attend a PSM course and learn more about the Scrum roles so that you can decide where your passion and your skills align. And even if the answer is, “I want to be a project manager,” it is essential to know how to effectively engage with and support Scrum Teams in delivering product Increments. You will be able to help facilitate change in your organization as they transition to more agile ways of working.
When I first learned about Scrum, I saw that the Scrum Master role was the best fit for me. I was able to use the skills and experience that helped me be a successful project manager and shift to a role that allowed me make a greater impact, be more aligned to my values, and live into my greater purpose.
Let’s leverage project management skills where they have the most impact in organizations.
Let’s enable project managers to actually be change agents.

5 Quick Tips for Creating Killer B2B Website Copy

When performing a Google search about writing B2B website content, I come across blog after blog that talks about how to write, well, blogs. But what about writing content for those core pages of your website that talk about your products, services, company, and unique value proposition? I haven’t come across many of those, but the importance of these pages cannot be stressed enough.
In the B2B landscape, prospects always perform research before investing in products and services for their business – oftentimes, a LOT of research. You need to make sure the pages in your B2B website design are not only informative but engaging and persuasive enough to get them to contact you.
Read on for 5 quick tips for creating B2B website copy that engages and converts.

Plan It Out

Writing website content can seem overwhelming. There are a lot of pages, and so much to say! Before you start pecking away at the keyboard, take a step back and look at the larger picture of your website.
First, create a site map. A site map is a list of all the pages in your B2B website design and how they relate to one another. It looks much like an organization chart, with your home page at the top. From the home page, decide which pages will serve as your main navigation – usually between 4-6 pages. These pages are the main categories that house the rest of your pages (the “subpages”). Pages on your main navigation are usually categories like Products (or Services or Solutions), Industries, Resources, Partners, Blog, and About Us.
Each of these main category pages will have subpages, and sometimes your subpages will have subpages. However you decide to organize it, your site map should be intuitive to a user who is navigating your B2B website.

Creating your site map first gives you a guide of what pages to write. From there, you can create outlines of the type of content to go on each page. It could just be a bulleted list of the sections or main points you want to make on each page. This is a critical step. If you start writing straightaway without a page outline, you may realize later that a point should’ve been mentioned on a different page – or on multiple pages. Developing page outlines ensures you’ve covered all your bases before you start writing copy.

Break Up Copy

Internet users do not read. They scan. When composing your website copy, keep this in mind.

Break up large paragraphs into smaller paragraphs.
Use subheads.
Use bullets and lists.

Try to deliver content in “chunks” rather than paragraphs for some of the sections on the web page. This works especially well when describing lists of features and benefits.
For example, instead of:
Our product has a bunch of amazing features. It’s got so many goodies and we’re really excited to tell you about them. This one feature is incredible and really helps you do a bunch of stuff. This feature is the heart of our whole program. But we’ve also got this other feature that is a major game changer as well and it helps you do ABC really, really well. Plus, we’ve got yet another feature that everyone loves, gives you XYZ and saves you loads of time.
Try this:
Incredible Feature
This helps you do a bunch of stuff and is the heart of our whole program.
Game-Changing Feature
This helps you do ABC really, really well.
Time-Saving Feature
Save loads of time with this feature, which gives you XYZ.
See how the “chunked” content is far easier to read, digest and comprehend than the paragraph? If something is important, don’t bury it in a paragraph. Create a separate section for it and make your point in a subhead.

Focus on Benefits

Companies love to talk about themselves. Leaders might think, if we just talk about how awesome we are, our target market will understand and want to buy our products and services. But it’s not so simple.
As writers, we need to remember one fundamental thing about human nature: everyone is concerned about their own needs, not yours. This is particularly the case with B2B companies. People are looking for solutions to their problems, so you need to be clear about how your company can help THEM.
While in many cases, yes, you need to describe the features of your product, do not neglect the benefits these bring to the buyer. Does it help them save time, streamline processes, communicate better, improve the bottom line? Don’t assume they will infer these benefits by reading about how impressive your product is.
Remember, people are busy and they are scanning your copy. They don’t always have time to reason that, for example, “If this product has automation… and automation typically helps people avoid errors… it will help make my reports more accurate.” Be explicit. Tell them that by using your product, their reports will be more accurate. Then tell them how.

With Complex Concepts, Show – Don’t Tell

Yes, I know we’re discussing copy and not design. But good writers work together with designers to deliver an overall great user experience. If, as a writer, you realize that you’re dealing with a complex subject, think about how to deliver this content in a way that will be easiest to understand.
Often, you can break up the copy into steps: Step 1, Step 2, Step 3, and so on. Or you can create a chart that compares a company’s products to one another side by side. Other times, an infographic could explain “how it works” most effectively.
While graphics require a skilled designer, the writer can think of the concept and relay their idea to the designer to execute – including the copy that goes along with the graphic.

Make Getting in Touch Easy

Is there anything worse than searching around on a B2B website for contact information? Sometimes I’ll see a contact e-mail inserted at the end of a paragraph – in the middle of the page. Readers can easily blow right past this.
Again, if something is important – and contact information might be the most important thing on your website – make it stand out, apart from the other copy. Place it in the navigation. Create its own section on every page with a big headline that says, “Get a Demo” with a form. Whatever you do, make it obvious.
Today, people have no time and don’t want to work to find your information. Make getting in touch with you as easy as possible.

Want Better Social Media Engagement? Try Stand Up Comedy

As marketers, our goal is to help people make decisions that make their lives better. But too often, we fall into the cycle of “let me tell you all about me!” and fall short when it comes to engaging with our consumers. Especially on social media.
Customers are the heroes. We’re just here to help them along the way. Many times, that help comes by way of social media engagement.
No one is scrolling social media to have a bad time. Folks are often bored and looking for entertaining content, whether from friends or brands they follow. This is where we bring in our good friend: humor.

Why use humor for social media engagement?
People like to laugh
The Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice reported a survey and content analysis of 2,911 videos that revealed an attitude favorability toward humor over serious entertainment. That’s why folks who don’t enjoy sportsball tune into The Big Game every year—for the commercials.
Humor gets attention and drives likability
Adding humor to an advertising campaign is a way for organizations to make an emotional connection with consumers. Comedic elements weaved into writing give your brand a voice otherwise lost in business jargon and stuffy infographics.
Comedy can convert to sales
According to a 1993 Journal of Marketing study that examined multinational effects of humor on advertising (a study that still stands true), the major conclusion was that “humor is more likely to enhance recall, evaluation, and purchase intention…” We already knew that, because we’re hilarious and people like us, but we like to link things to look legit.
Use comedy tactics in your social copy
There are some simple writing ingredients that help convey a funny idea. Have fun and switch up your approach, but here are things that help us rein in our thoughts:
Use the “Rule of Threes”
This is a writing principle that suggests that a trio of events or characters is more humorous, satisfying, or effective than other numbers. Think “a redhead, a blonde, and a brunette…” or “a salesperson, a graphic designer, and a copywriter walk into a bar…” You get the idea. Most classic jokes are set up with three characters, situations, or examples. This helps create rhythm, pattern, and escalation.
Don’t sandwich your punchline
Back to the rule of threes… but you want to end on funny. When writing or giving a speech, people remember the first and last thing you say. Make it count. Ending on your joke gives your audience a breath to enjoy.
Cut the fat
In a world of Twitter limits and TL;DR (too long; didn’t read), we’re juggling our message and short attention spans. So, you gotta’ get to the heckin’ point! Reminiscing on the infamous Geico commercials: “It’s so easy to use geico.com, a caveman can do it.” Geico served their message while getting laughs.

via GIPHY
Use the element of surprise
In that very first Geico commercial that aired, we watched a man in a suit and tie talk to us about insurance. We had no idea the cameraman was a caveman who was going to be deeply offended by the script. He throws down his equipment and leaves. It’s funny! Geico caught us by surprise, established a character, and became a talking point in advertising… all while selling insurance
Build consistency and a relationship with callbacks
This is a great way to come back to a previous statement or known situation. After Geico established the character of the caveman, it was easy to write more stories around him. This tactic builds trust and likeability with your audience.
Connect with your audience
Instead of talking AT them, start a conversation with them. Humor is a great way to humanize your message. Instead of “blah blah blah” from Big Box Store, create and produce content you would want to read or watch. Be grateful to have your audience’s attention and don’t waste their time. Just like stand-up comics, if you’re “bombing” recognize that and pivot. Check your engagement on posts. Some may be doing better than others. Lean into what’s working.
Acknowledge the hecklers
In comedy, there’s always that drunk guy in the back of the room who wants to yell something in the middle of your set. As a pro, you can’t let this derail you from your story. The show must go on. However, you need to play off what just happened. In marketing, this can come up in negative reviews or nasty feedback in your comments section. We believe it’s best to address those, too. Shut down the situation the best you can (humor is helpful!) and privately message or reach out to your internet troll with a gameplan to fix their grievance.
Remember your “Tight Five”
On stage, we reference the “tight five.” In business, we call it an elevator pitch. In essence, it’s your MO, your go-to, your tried and true. Stay on-brand, work with what you know, and know what works. Introduce as much personality as you can while keeping your message concise. This will eventually become your story, the bit that defines you and your brand, and the way you introduce yourself to the world.
Think beyond social media
Now that you’re groomed to be the funniest clown at the party, let’s talk about how you can utilize these tips in social, blogs, e-newsletters, and ads.
Get Gif-y with it
Giphy.com has about a billion gifs to choose from. From movies, commercials, TV shows, you name it. .Gifs are a way to engage with your audience and stay relevant without producing your own video.Example Facebook post: You’re not using humor in social posts!?

via GIPHY
(That little diddy is from the blockbuster hit Mean Girls. If you don’t get the reference, you’re not my audience and I’m going to quickly pivot…)
Let your hair down a little
If you’re sharing the same daily restaurant promotions… daily… add something to spice up your post.
Example Twitter post:
Mention a friend who might turn into a lonely cat lady if she doesn’t come out to ladies night at XYZ bar! Free entry, half-off drinks, and social interaction with ACTUAL humans await you! #catlady
Look for creative opportunities to incorporate humor
There are little ways to plant funny easter eggs in all of your writing. From homepages, to unsubscribe texts, to package design and even 404 pages.
Example “Thank you for subscribing” copy:
Hey! Thanks for subscribing to Peanut Allergens Are All Around Us DOT COM.
April Fools! You subscribed to Big Sea. Get ready to have your socks rocked with the most business-boosting marketing content delivered right to your inbox! We’re glad we’re friends. Brunch Sunday? Mani-pedis after? Too soon? Okay… we’ll catch you on the flipside.

Listening Is Always A Good Thing?

If you ever had a hankering for an Egg McMuffin or pancakes at midnight — you were just out of luck. McDonalds stopped breakfast at 10:30 so they could switch the grills over to their lunch menu, which raises the question: “Who eats lunch at 10:30?”
Did McDonalds listen?
Last week, faced with massively shrinking profits, McDonalds finally announced they’ll serve breakfast all day in their restaurants. Well, isn’t that nice of them — since we’ve complained for YEARS that cutting off breakfast at 10:30 is just too early — especially for techies who’ve worked into the morning. We don’t even struggle out of bed until around noon.
Of course, that depends on your definition of “breakfast”, which, for McDonalds either includes biscuits or McMuffins (not both) and pancakes, according to Business Insider.
McDonald’s restaurants will serve either McMuffin sandwiches or biscuit sandwiches — not both — depending on local preferences, according to the company.
The restaurants serving McMuffin sandwiches will only serve three kinds: The egg McMuffin, the sausage McMuffin with egg, and the sausage McMuffin.
Those serving biscuit sandwiches will also have three options: The bacon, egg, and cheese biscuit, the sausage biscuit with egg, and the sausage biscuit.
Pancakes, sausage burritos, yogurt and oatmeal will also be on the menu.
McGriddles and bagels won’t be available. Hash browns may be available at some restaurants.
Listening to customers matters
Listening to customers matters. Firms that don’t listen find themselves moved out of the consideration set for increasingly large numbers of consumers.
According to The Motley Fool (in a news report based on fact, not some spoof from the world of weird and unusual human behavior):
The move is happening because of public demand. The fast-food chain acknowledged in the press release that it’s the No. 1 request it hears from customers. “In fact, more than 120,000 people tweeted McDonald’s asking for breakfast throughout the day in the past year alone,” it claimed.
As a marketer for the last 35 years, I’ve heard all the arguments from operations, finance, and the C-suite”
We can’t afford to give customers….
We only have so much capacity, we have to make what we can.
How can you prove customers want XYZ, you only have some comments from your survey? Put some numbers behind that and we’ll talk.
Sure, some folks said XYZ about our product, but we have millions of consumers. Why should we care that we have a few folks mouthing off against our product?
Interestingly, lots of the folks who’ve said that in the past are now wondering what happened to their huge profits and are laying folks off right and left.
Suddenly, firms of all sizes consider making a few concessions to meet demands customers made for years — like McDonald’s breakfast.
Listening versus monitoring
For a group of people who call themselves analysts, it’s surprising there’s no consensus about the difference between listening and monitoring — hence why we have intelligent folks making some of the comments above.
Listening involves gathering and interpreting conversations. In the days before social media, this was expensive, time-consuming, and required special skills to form focus groups capable of shedding insights to optimize market performance.
Now, all you need is a good “ear” to hear conversations on social networks. It’s like being invited into your customers’ living rooms and even having an opportunity to join the conversations.
Monitoring is, according to MarketingProfs, more of a “scrape and dump” approach to social network conversations. Instead of listening to customers and analyzing their comments to provide insights, monitoring (often automated) provides counts of keywords, number of mentions, and, if you’re really lucky, a few associations between your keywords and other words in the conversation.
Benefits of listening
The benefits of listening never materialize if other managers and C-suite members don’t buy into the importance of listening. I remember teaching a class full of management-level folks from Fortune 100 firms and arguing for the importance of listening to customers. One particularly brave student basically said I was the stupidest person alive (and trust me he didn’t couch his sentiments much). Why would anyone care about what a few people said about anything when your market is millions of consumers.
Of course, that comment preceded the crash in 2008 (and let’s call it what it was, not an economic downturn). In the time after this astute manager made his crass statement, his firm lost $millions in revenue and faced a recall that nearly bankrupted the company. His company tried to reason with consumer fears rather than accepting their perception that his company was to blame.
In marketing, perception is all that matters, reality has no place in our discussions.
Period.
If consumers THINK you have a problem; you have a big problem.
Compare the response above with the response from Tylenol during the tampering scandal that rocked the firm in 1982. While knowledgeable folks predicted the tampering spelled death to the flagship J&J brand, the brand came back faster and stronger after a quick response to consumer fear. Instead of “fiddling while Rome burned” as was the fashion, Tylenol managers quickly ordered a total recall of all forms of the popular pain reliever.
Before the crisis ended, J&J spent $100 million in the recall and subsequent relaunch of Tylenol, but quick consumer response not only won over consumers, but supported other J&J products and helped launch them in their successful bid in the lucrative pharmaceutical business.
Listening goes beyond responding
Being offered a seat at the dining room table of billions of consumers offers other benefits to brands willing to listen.
Not only is listening a great tool for taking the temperature of consumers, it offers insights into unmet needs that offer stellar opportunities for organizational expansion into new products.
Sure, some consumers might voice their desire for a pair of shoes with a lower heel or a less pointy toe, but they’re also likely to express needs that drive entire new industries.

For instance, ask any woman about her shoes and your gonna get complaints about her feet hurting — especially if she’s walking a lot or dancing at a club. But who wants to wear ugly shoes, especially out to a club. The solution? Vending machines selling cheap slipper-like shoes available for club-goers to ease their sore tootsies.
This idea based on listening to consumers spawned an entire industry of machines selling comfortable shoes and flip-flops.
Beware of who you’re listening to
Maybe you overlooked the small question mark at the end of my post title.
No, it wasn’t a mistake.
You really have to be careful who you listen to. A recent study found listening on social networks emphasizes a few folks who basically shout at us and marginalize folks like you and me who post occasionally. An important element of these findings is that those shouters are statistically different from the rest of us in terms of demographics and psychographics.
So, what does that mean?
It means you need to be careful when you’re listening. Recognize that just because you “hear” something a lot, doesn’t mean that comment is more important to your brand than comments you “hear” infrequently. That’s especially true when you’re listening to folks who aren’t part of your target audience.

4 Sample Letters to Turn Mailing List Subscribers into Customers

Do you have a number of email list subscribers who never purchase anything? Recently, I was chatting with a few of my blogger friends who are newer to the blogging game and they asked me what specific emails I use when someone subscribes to my mailing list.
I actually do have some very specific emails that I send when a subscriber signs up, leaves the list, and so on. I believe these emails work to convert subscribers into customers. These are called trigger emails. Some sites send a trigger email when someone places an item in a shopping cart and then abandons it as well.
Unbounce reported that Website getAmplify uses triggered emails for a 152% higher click-through rate and 50% higher open rates. This is significant enough that it is worth testing out on your own mailing list subscribers.
Your subscribers are already interested in what you have to offer and what you have to say. Your mailing list is very targeted because it is made up of your target demographic. Don’t overlook your subscribers when planning your marketing campaigns.
In addition, you already have some unique information about these potential customers. You may have collected their name, email, location and perhaps birthday or anniversary, for example. If you use a mailing list like ChimpMail, you can also see which newsletters they are opening and which links within they are clicking on. All of this information can be analyzed and used to your advantage for marketing.
Types of Letters to Send to Mailing List Subscribers
The samples below should give you an idea of the types of letters you can send to your subscribers to spur them into action and convert them into customers. Keep in mind that the mailing list service you use will have specific coding you need to insert to use the subscriber’s name or other specifics.
Welcome Letter
Dear [First Name],
Welcome to XYZ Newsletter. Each week, you’ll get [Add specific features of your newsletter here that are free and valuable].
As a thank you for subscribing, below is a one-time code you can use for 15% off any purchase on XYZ Website. At checkout, simply use the promo code: XYZ
We’re happy to have you on board. Welcome to the XYZ family!
XYZ OwnerXYZ.com
Exit Letter
Dear [First Name],
We’re sorry to hear you want to leave the mailing list. If there is anything we can do differently to meet your needs as a subscriber, please let us know [link to feedback form here].
Have you had a chance to check out our new line of [fill in product]. We love both our subscribers and unsubscribers and want to offer you free shipping on your next purchase. Simply enter code: XYZ
If you’d like to resubscribe to the newsletter at a later date, simply go to our home page and click on the “Subscribe” button.
Sincerely,
XYZ OwnerXYZ.com
Reminder Letter
Dear [First Name],
Just a friendly reminder that your discount of 15% off any purchase expires [expiration date here]. Hurry! You still have time to take advantage of this special offer.
Simply enter the following code in the Promo Code box at checkout: XYZ
Thanks!
XYZ OwnerXYZ.com
Birthday Letter
Dear [First Name],
Happy birthday from XYZ.com! We hope you have a very happy birthday. To help you celebrate, we’re offering you a free [fill in blank] with any order plus free shipping.
Have a fabulous birthday!
XYZ OwnerXYZ.com
Series Emails
Silverpop reports that according to eConsultancy’s UK Email Marketing Statistics report, about 52% of customers sign up for a mailing list hoping to receive a discount or promotional code.
This is where series emails come into play. The minute a customer signs up for your mailing list, he should begin receiving a series of emails from you. A welcome email confirms that he has indeed subscribed to your mailing list. You may then want to follow with a discount offer for free shipping or money off.
In addition to those emails, you can send out special promotions when having sales, holiday discounts and birthday and anniversary promotions specifically for those customers with birthdays or anniversaries in a given month.
On top of these emails, you should send out reminder emails from time to time. For example, if you’ve offered a discount for signing up and the expiration date is nearing, your autoresponder should send out a triggered email if the person has not used his promo code yet.
Case Studies
When it comes to successful email marketing campaigns, there are a number of businesses doing this really well. Studying their techniques can help you come up with your own emails to send to your subscribers.
LV=
Econsultancy took a look at LV=’s mailing campaign and what they are doing right. LV= is an insurance company. Their goals were to improve customer rapport and increase new customers buying insurance online. The emails were targeted based on the type of insurance the subscriber was interested in purchasing and where they were in their quest to buy insurance.
For example, if the customer abandoned the search after choosing a specific type of insurance, the emails would be different than if the customer just looked at what was available.
Some of the things LV= did was to personalize the email with a name, details about the policy the customer was looking at and offering cross selling options, such as travel insurance, home insurance and even pet insurance along with a promised discount if the customer clicked on the link.
The results included a more than 50% increase in the open rate and a 41.83% increase in the clickthrough rate. In addition, the conversion rate went up by almost 20%.
Fashion Store
Canopy Labs took a look at a fashion store, which they don’t name specifically. The fashion store saw an increase more than 5 times in conversions after implementing email segmentation.
The store decided to target customers who had purchased something and then hadn’t come back for at least a few months. This number equaled around 12% of its users. The email campaign was a simple thank you letter for purchasing in the past with an incentive if they purchased again.
Even though the click rate was only 1.4 times higher, the conversion rate was more than 5 times what it had been. In addition, the per dollar purchase was about 15.7 times higher.
SmartPak Equine
Marketing Sherpa took a look at the unique emails sent out by Smartpak Equine that result in higher sales. The company sends out some very targeted emails that have some amazing results. They have around 40 different emails they send at various times.
These triggered images are both automated and manual batch campaigns. The open rate is around 28% and conversion rate is 11%.
For example, they send out customer vitamin and supplement packs for customers with horses. About 11 days before the customized SmartPak is shipped, the customer is sent a reminder. This lets the customer know when the SmartPak will arrive and gives her a few days to make any changes or additions to the order.
They also send emails that are triggered when a shopping cart is abandoned and requesting reviews of products.
The Importance of Communicating
Email communication is one of the least expensive forms of marketing you will do for your business. Once you’ve created your initial email letters, you should be able to just plug in a name and send them out in batches as needed. Even if your conversion increases by only a few percent, that can result in higher sales volume and mean the difference between your site succeeding or failing.

Email Marketing Newsletters: Your Design Checklist

Are you ready to design the best email newsletter ever?
Your email marketing newsletter design is hands-down the most important element of your campaign. Without an effective and compelling design, your recipients won’t engage and maybe will even unsubscribe or *horror* mark you as spam.
I want to help you make the most out of all your hard work and show you just how important each design step is.
Previously, I had discussed the importance of maintaining a clean and segmented email marketing list. You don’t want to waste all that work, do you?
After reading this article, or while you’re scanning away, take a moment to leave a comment with your thoughts. Your input matters, and I’m sure I’ve missed some valuable points.
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1) Subject line
Are you happy with your subject line? Are you sure it’s going to be effective?
Your subject line is one of the most important elements of your email, if not the most important of all. It is the leading factor for whether your email gets opened or not.
When people look at your email in their inbox, what do they see that’ll compel them to click and read more? Does your subject line hook them, interest them, or build upon their curiosity?
Your subject line needs to draw their attention without giving away the gist of your email. You want them to open it and ultimately take action in one way or another.

Take the time to develop your subject line properly. Give it a lot of thought. When you do, you just might see a big difference.
Real-Life Scenario:
While with a local nonprofit, I tried to experiment with different subject line methods that I had learned about while studying marketing. It was a challenge to create something that hooked the recipient while also maintaining the strict professionalism of my employer. Once I finally had a line we could all agree upon, I sent out a series of emails without making almost any changes to it. The open rate and attendee participation suffered as a result.
While your follow-up email subject lines should be similar to your first one, it could be of benefit to try mixing it up a bit. You can add “Reminder” or something of the sort to connect the two emails, but I recommend using different wording for each email subject line.
When you send an email out with the subject line “Come visit us at XYZ conference in XYZ” (for example), be creative when sending out the next email. Catch the recipients’ attention over again with a reminder subject line that is just as compelling as the first email.
Resources:
Crazy Egg has an article titled: 12 Tips to Boost Email Click-Through Rates plus 23 Strategic Subject Lines. In addition to providing proven strategies for getting people to open your email and act on your content, Crazy Egg gives you examples of some of the most effective subject lines out there.
Impact Branding & Design published an article on subject lines titled: 6 Easy Subject Line Hacks to Boost Your Email Open Rates Right Now. It is filled with great advice to help increase your open rates and decrease your chances of getting marked as spam.
2) Preheader
This part of an email marketing newsletter design is largely overlooked. It’s the subtext that appears at the very top of your email. It’s also the short snippet of text that appears next to your email’s subject line.

Take advantage of this valuable real estate by making your preheader intriguing or informative. It’ll help improve your open rates where your subject line may have failed to do so.
Real-Life Scenario:
While I’ve been writing this article, I’ve gone through my own inbox to see what shows up in the preheader for some of the subscription emails I have there. I use Gmail, and here are some good and not-so-good examples of some preheaders I’ve found (subject line – preheader):
Subject line – subject line repeated
Subject line – read in browser link
Subject line – social media CTAs
Subject line – “Here are a few articles we thought you’d enjoy”
Subject line – “Your weekly roundup of the latest posts…”
And so on…
I definitely prefer preheaders that say something that’ll further compel me to click on the email. I don’t feel compelled to click when I see the first 3 preheader examples from above, especially #3.
In those cases, what’s in it for me? How is a repeat subject line making good use of this valuable space? How are your social media ads going to encourage me to open your email? If anything, it could end up hurting you in the end.
If I see preheaders used for self-promotion, you’d better have an incredibly convincing subject line.
Resources:
In an article I found from the Salesforce blog, the writer explained what a preheader is and why it’s so important. Although it’s a brief article, it is very informative if you’re questioning the value of preheader text.
Your preheader text is an essential part of your newsletter design, and this article tells you why.
ClickZ has a blog article titled: Eight Tips for Effective E-mail Preheaders, which goes into detail about the ways you can create preheaders that work.
One of the key points in this article is that your preheader should not be a repeat of your subject line. Unfortunately, I see 9/10 of my subscription emails taking that approach.
Take a look at this article to find 8 of the most helpful tips for effectively using the preheader space.
3) Imagery
Your newsletter should not be black and white, but it also should not be overwhelmed with color and imagery.

You need to find a balance between text and imagery in order to draw your recipient in and keep their attention.
Real-Life Scenario:
When I first started receiving email newsletters from my favorite blogs, I noticed the wide variety of techniques each blog chose for their email’s appearance.
Some of the most influential bloggers out there send me emails with snippets of their new article(s) in text only. I never read it. I simply skip all the text and go to the article link.
If I get an email with colorful imagery, I pay more attention to the purpose of the email. I read far more when the text is grouped with images because I, along with many other people, prefer to see imagery that explains the content than just text alone.
If you’re going to stick with black & white, text-only emails, don’t waste your time. Speaking from experience, email recipients don’t have time to read the heavy, visually unappealing content you send. In the end, you’re much better off taking the little extra time to add imagery, or at least color, to your email.
Resources:
Constant Contact provides an article titled: Avoid These 6 Common Mistakes When Adding Images to Your Email Marketing, which lists the mistakes you can make as well as advice on how to prevent them in future campaigns.
Number 6 in this article is my personal favorite because it’s a mistake I see a lot, and it’s a mistake I’ve made in the past myself.
Another great resource is the article by AWeber: Don’t Use Another Image In Your Emails Without Reading This First. The article includes a very good point that I haven’t talked about yet:
Your emails need imagery, yes, but even with it, you can’t neglect your text content. Imagery shouldn’t replace or overwhelm your main content. They need to work together for best results.
4) Links
Although I’ve been saying each design component is important, I pretty much have to say it every time. Each part of your design has a purpose that can’t be ignored, and links are a must-use.

You need to add links to your emails so that recipients click-through to your target location. Most importantly, you need these links to be convincing.
If you simply say “click here” or use other generic text, you’re neglecting a great opportunity for an increased click-through rate (CTR). Even worse, if you simply add the URL as your link spelled out, your email looks amateur at best.
Don’t use too many links because it’ll confuse both you and the reader as to what your real goal is. Have a focused call-to-action (CTA) in your email that stands out much more than any other links. This will increase your CTR and give you an easier time measuring the success of your campaign.
On another note, here are a few other tips for using links in your emails:
If using a shortened URL link, take advantage of it and track it.
Test the link to make sure it goes where it’s supposed to go.
Give each link enough room so that recipients don’t have issues trying to select them on a mobile device.
Real-Life Scenario:
When I was working with a nonprofit, I was often in charge of their email marketing, and as a result, I had the experiences and opportunities to learn what works and what doesn’t with link placement, design and use.
One of the mistakes I made was not having a focused CTA. I added several links, all of which were the same size, color… And they were all grouped together in one space.
It was a mess, and I quickly learned my lesson. My next email campaign worked much better as I had added a CTA that stood out from the rest of the content and links. The space I had created for links in the past – I gave each link more space and limited the number of links I added.
Resources:
I found an article by Marketo titled: 10 Best Practices for Using Links in Emails. It goes more in depth than I have on this subject, so I recommend taking a look at what it has to offer you.
One of the points in the article really stands out to me. Your links should always be relevant to the content of your email. You don’t want to confuse or distract your recipients, so stay focused on the theme or purpose of your email.
5) Copywriting
The last part of your design that I discuss is the way in which you add and finalize your copy.

When you select the text you want to use, you need to be especially concise and choosy in what you include.
People aren’t going to read huge blocks of text, so make sure you cut it up into separate sections when you can.
Stay relevant to what you want people to know and do at the end. It needs to relate to your final call-to-action.
Also, have an editor (or 2 or 3) go over your copy to check for spelling, grammar, simplicity, and accuracy. Have them give you a critique of whether they understand and can follow what you’re trying to say.
Real-Life Scenario:
When I receive newsletters in my email, I consistently choose to open almost all of them because I know I signed up to receive them for a reason. However, when I look at the opened email, I sometimes get disappointed in what I see.
I’ve seen emails that were clearly not proofread or thought-through. I’ve even seen emails that simply don’t make sense, and I have no idea what the sender wanted me to do.
The worst I’ve seen was an email that had text that didn’t even relate whatsoever to the subject line. It was clear that the sender did not check what topic s/he wanted to share.
Resources:
The writers at Writtent provided an article titled: The 11 Key Elements of Amazing Copywriting, which gives you a detailed description of what you need to have and do for successful copywriting.
Although the article is not directly focused on email marketing, it can all be used for that purpose.
Another resource to check out is from GetResponse: The “4Ps” of Persuasive Email Copywriting. It gives you a different appreciation for proper email copy by describing 4 “Ps” for effectiveness.
The article focuses on your copy from beginning to end, using persuasion as its main point.
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Summary
There are other elements to your email marketing newsletter design, but I’ve gone into detail about the points I find most important:
Subject line
Preheader
Imagery
Links
Copywriting
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