The better way to sell online

How to write killer email copy

Want to know how to hook in customers, seal deals and boost sales? Your emails can be a powerful tool; here are four ways to make the most of them.

1. Explain why you matter

In last week’s article on email subject lines I stressed the point that relevancy is everything.

You should always picture your customers as busy people. They skip emails they view as unimportant or uninteresting, they only briefly skim copy, and unless you give them a good reason to stay they will only give you a few seconds of your time.

That is why you need to let your customers know why they should care about your email as quickly as possible. Get to the point, and make it relevant!

Have a look at the email example below. In the first paragraph, highlighted in red, Magazine Co. immediately lets the reader know why they are getting in contact. They let the customer know that their magazine subscription is about to end, and how much time the customer has left in their contract. Then, they immediately offer a solution – a call to action and a shop magazines button.

The fact that this email is relevant to the reader is vital.

Imagine if the first paragraph were missing and the customer only received the second paragraph. They might wonder why they should want a new magazine subscription when they already have one.

That is why clarity and relevance are so important.

2. Explain how they benefit

Imagine that you are selling a vacuum cleaner. To promote it, you send out an email which lists three of its features. You tell your customers that this vacuum cleaner has 15% more suction than your other models, an inbuilt battery, and a removable dust chamber.

Sounds good, right?

Wrong.

A common mistake entrepreneurs make is advertising their products with features. If you want to grab attention, advertise your products with benefits instead!

Have a look at these examples:

This vacuum cleaner has 15% more suction -> This vacuum cleaner will save you time by picking up dirt faster.

This vacuum cleaner has an inbuilt battery -> This vacuum cleaner will make it easier to clean hard to reach places; you won’t need to worry about dragging cables through rooms.

This vacuum cleaner has a removable dust chamber -> You won’t need to get your hands dirty to clean this vacuum cleaner. You can simply slide the dust and dirt out of the machine and tip it in the bin.

Whatever you are promoting through your emails, focus on benefits instead of features. Your product, offer or service might be fantastic, but customers must be able to relate it to themselves.

A common mistake entrepreneurs make is advertising their products with features. If you want to grab attention, advertise your products with benefits instead!

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3. Keep it snappy

You might have a million things to say, but your customers won’t be interested in all of them. Most people who read emails simply skim through them until they find something that interests them.

If you write hundreds of words, customers will be less able to skim, and chances are they will lose interest.

If you want to share a lot of information through an email, the best way to do it is by providing a succinct summary and a link elsewhere. That way, customers can quickly decide if they are interested in what you are sharing, and click through to read it if they chose.

Keep your summary brief and to the point; customers should be able to quickly identify your key point.

4. Infuse your personality

Just because your emails should be practical does not mean they can’t be loveable. While it’s true that you should always keep things clear and to the point, there is no harm in letting your personality shine through.

After all, a key element in business is the relationship you foster with your customers: let them get to know you. While this doesn’t mean you should include family photos or selfies in your emails, it does mean you should feel free to be witty, sarcastic, and funny. Just make you’re your humour doesn’t interfere with the key points you need to make!

If you keep these four things in mind your customers (and business) will thank you.

- Lena Klein

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