Email campaigns are a powerful tool to reach your audience. However, the same techniques you apply to blogging don’t translate so well when it comes to writing engaging emails. To get the most out of email marketing, you’ll need to learn some new tricks.
The more effective your emails are, the more traffic you can drive back to your website, and the more conversions you can get. As far as marketing goes, few mediums can provide such excellent results as email, so it pays to work on how you approach them.
In this article, I’m going to guide you through three simple techniques you can use to write more engaging emails, why they work, and how to put them into action. Let’s get right to it!
1. Pay Attention to Your Subject Lines
If you’re anything like me, you’re subscribed to dozens of websites and services, which means you get a lot of emails every day. The problem is, I don’t care about most of the emails I get. I might not delete them, but it’s rare for me to stop and read a full email unless it has to do with work or it’s a personal message.
Savvy email marketers know this, so they focus on grabbing your attention the best way they can, with a catchy headline. Here are a few examples of emails I’ve gotten during the past week:
- A Developer Walks Into a Sidebar
- NEWS / UPDATES – More New Videos and Photos!
- The Psychology of Money, Teens, Social Media & Technology 2018
- New Updates from Authors You Follow
As you might imagine, I didn’t pay much attention to emails two and four. Emails one and three, on the other hand, caught my attention with their headlines and earned their respective clicks.
The titles you use for your emails are essential if you want your campaigns to have a decent click-through rate. They need to be as engaging as the content of your emails themselves without falling into clickbait territory.
When it comes to my own campaigns, I like to use the same strategy I do for article titles. I let you know right off the bat what you can expect to find if you read the email, and if I have space, I’ll also mention how it can benefit you. For example, if I sent this article via an email blast, I might use the title “X Ways to Engage Your Audience Through Email Marketing and Increase Your Click-through Rates”. It’s a bit on the long side, but it stands out from other generic emails.
2. Personalize Your Emails
One of the simplest ways you can write more engaging emails is to use personalization techniques. For example, you can make it so all your emails display the name of the person reading them. It’s a simple trick, but it goes a long way towards making your content sound more personal and less like spam. Here’s a quick example to illustrate my point:
I’m writing to let you know about my new free course on how to train your puppy to become better at fetching. Since you’ve been a subscriber for a while, I wanted to give you the opportunity to sign up first!
Sadly, that’s not a real email, but I’d sign up in a heartbeat if it were. Now here’s the same message with a couple of small differences:
I’m writing to let you know about my new free course on how to train puppies to become better at fetching. You’ve been a subscriber for a while, so you get the chance to sign up before anybody else!
Both emails tell the same story. However, the first message makes an effort to sound more familiar. That helps put your subscribers at ease, which can make them more receptive towards your suggestions. It’s not rocket science. The best part is most modern email marketing platforms provide you with a wide variety of tools you can use to personalize your emails. Constant Contact, for example, enables you to include personalized greetings in your emails:
You can even go a step further and include other variables from information that subscribers have given you. For example, if you know what their puppy’s name is, you could send a message like the one below:
A lot of people know that emails like that one are automated, but even then, it’s a nice touch that makes you feel more appreciated.
3. Use Storytelling to Craft Compelling Emails
One trend I’ve noticed a lot of the best email marketers use is they tell a story through their messages. To give you an example, I subscribe to the newsletter of a guy that likes to write about affiliate marketing. He’s considered an ‘authority’ in the field and most of his emails use a similar structure – they tell you about how learning about a certain thing enabled him to become more successful and what his process was.
The gimmick becomes obvious once you’ve been a subscriber for a while, but it still works wonders because his emails don’t sound like sales pitches. Instead, he tells you a story to get you to convert to whatever product or service he’s pushing. To build on my earlier example of the puppy email, here’s how you could improve on it with a bit of storytelling:
I’ve had Sir Barksalot (that’s my puppy) for a while now and even though he’s the best, I noticed he’s not the brightest when it comes to playing fetch. Sometimes he’ll bring me back entirely different branches, or just get distracted while playing.
He’s still a great puppy, of course, but I always got frustrated when I saw other dogs playing fetch better. Then I thought to myself, “What if I really put my mind towards teaching him?” I spent months practicing with Sir Barksalot and by the time I was done, he was the best fetcher in the neighborhood.
Now, I want to share my training methods with you, for free. I created an online course to teach you all about fetching and I want you to be the first one to sign up!
That’s a lot more compelling than the emails in the last section, right? Storytelling is a powerful skill, and there’s no reason why you can’t apply it to email marketing. The secret is to zero in on what your subscribers want and use that as the cornerstone of the stories you tell. That way, subscribers will never get annoyed when they get one of your emails.
Email marketing is just one of many ways you can go about promoting your website. If you’re new to blogging, you’ll want to check out our Beginner Blogging course, which also covers other methods of marketing your site.
For now, however, let’s focus on how to write more engaging emails. Here are the best three tips to get you going in the right direction:
- Pay attention to your subject lines.
- Personalize your emails.
- Use storytelling to craft compelling emails.
Do you have any questions about how to write better emails? Let’s talk about them in the comments section below!