Great Email Marketing Copy Gets Sales Results
Think about the last time you purchased something over the Internet. If that purchase was the result of an email message, what was it that made you want to buy? It was probably well-written copy that compelled you to learn more. To help you create that kind of interest with your own readers, here are some basic tips for great email marketing copy.
It's All About the Subject Line
Since you only have a few seconds to grab their attention, your first job is to create a great subject line. What would make you want to open the message? What sets your message apart from dozens of others in their Inbox?
Great email one-liners, like great ads, include information about the product and promotion. They just say it more quickly. What is your product, in three words? Is it on sale? Is it brand new? Why do they need it? These are the kinds of questions you can answer in one subject line, if you work at it.
Here are a few examples of poorly written email marketing subject lines:
Amazing Software for Sale
BUY SOFTWARE FROM ME
Notice that none of those subject lines tells the whole story. The software may, indeed, be amazing, but why should I buy it from you? What kind of accounting software is it? Is it on sale, or are you just letting me know you still carry it?
Let's rewrite those subject lines to make them interesting:
Essential Small Business Software on Sale Now
Guaranteed Lowest Price on Accounting Software
Survive Tax Time with Quicken Small Business
We've kept the subject line short and sweet, but we've managed to tell a story. Your reader now has a reason to open your message.
Keeping It Interesting
Now that we've talked about great subject lines, let's also talk about holding the potential client's interest. If your reader takes the time to open your message, you have a few more seconds to tell your story. That doesn't mean your message should be three lines long, but you do need a lot of information up-front.
We can use our small business accounting software example to illustrate this point. Here's a message doomed to the Trash folder:
Subject Line: Accounting Software
Email Message: All businesses need some kind of software. We probably have just what you need. Look at our site to see our full selection.
Oh, my...if your reader hasn't fallen asleep, his attention has zoomed on to the next message. To keep email copy interesting, state the customer's need up front. Tell her how you can meet that need. Can you give her a good price, and can she get the product quickly? Here's how that same message could be rewritten:
Subject Line: Essential Small Business Software on Sale Now
Email Message: Need to set up your small business accounting system? Quicken Small Business can have you up and running in under an hour. Visit our website for great sale prices, and download Quicken Small Business today.
By rewriting the same message, you've told the reader why he needs your software and where he can buy it for a great price. Email marketing & advertising can really produce great sales results when you have really good ad copy.
Beating the Global Attention Deficit
Email marketing is an inexpensive way to reach thousands (perhaps millions!) of people with your message. Never assume, however, that just because you contact them they're going to go to your website.
Always remember there's a global attention deficit brought about by overloaded lives. We've all become quite selective about what we'll take the time to read, out of sheer necessity.
The volume of email most of us receive is staggering, so unless you give the reader a compelling reason to pay attention, this form of marketing won't be very effective.
Messages that convert to sales contain both well-written copy and interesting formatting. Pictures of your products may snag a person's interest even before the message. By creating messages with graphics and images, you're increasing the possibility they'll be read.
There are great email handling packages available, so if you're not familiar with html coding, invest in a system that creates attractive formatting for your email marketing.
Compliment Readers with Great Copy
A last word about compelling email copy: with all the talk about the "dumbing down" of the written word, there's still value in being articulate. Clean, well-written copy always wins over misspelled gobbledygook. Don't insult your email list by skimping on great copy.
If you're working with an email marketing package, that's great, but take the time to personalize your messages. Today's Internet audience is sophisticated enough to recognize "canned" messages. It's a compliment to your email list if you consider them important enough to write them intelligent messages.
Writing good copy may not be your forte', but don't despair. Hiring a copywriter may be as simple as contacting your Internet marketing specialist. No matter what the source, investing in someone to get your message right is a smart move.
Marketing your online business by email can be an exciting addition to your Internet strategy. Take the time to do it right and you'll be rewarded with loyal customers, increased sales and more income.