Over 306 billion emails are sent every day. As marketers, how do you vie for the consumer’s attention in such a scenario (read crowded inbox)? And most importantly, how do you stand out? When done right, email marketing gives a whopping ROI of 4200%.
The question is how.
The answer is by writing a brilliant copy that catches the recipient’s attention, such that they are motivated enough to turn into a paying customer. Email copy is crucial to determining whether your campaign is going to be a failure or a success. But writing an email copy that gives you a high ROI is tough because good email copywriting is a lot more than just generating a catchy headline or keeping it brief.
Email copywriting isn’t rocket science, but it can take quite some practice and testing to get it just right. Below, we have assimilated ten actionable email copywriting techniques that will help you deliver brilliant content every time.
1. Make The Subject Line Stand Out
No matter how great your email content is, it will amount to nothing if your prospects don’t even open it. The best way to persuade your prospects to read your content is to hook them with an enticing subject line. Learn to optimize your subject line for best results. Some ways to make the subject line stand out are:
- Keep it short and sweet
- Use catchy phrases
- Use personalization
- Create a sense of urgency (FOMO works wonders)
2. Segment And Personalize
A study done by Mailchimp showed that segmentation increased clicks by 100.95% and email opens by 14.31% compared to unsegmented campaigns.
Think about it. If you have a productivity tool, not all of your customers will use it in the same way. Some may use it for their teams. Yet others may use it to track their to-do lists.
In this case, sending an email with two different headlines like “Increase your team productivity by 77% with our tool” and “Scale-up personal productivity by 64%” would work best for those different segments.
Look at how Twitter adopts personalization by sending accounts’ recommendations:
3. Make Use Of Power Words
Power words are words that evoke a strong emotional response in the reader. These words provide an instant boost to dull, lifeless copy and compel the reader to open your email and take the desired action.
However, instead of mindlessly Googling and using a list of powerful words like “amazing,” “sensational,” and “mesmerizing,” start with a target emotion in mind. You can then search for powerful words related to that emotion and place them strategically in your email headline and content.
A hint of caution: Don’t litter your copy with powerful words, as they may not deliver. Use them in moderation for proper engagement, leading to higher conversions.
4. Inculcate The Bucket Brigade Copywriting Method
Bucket brigades are bridge phrases that copywriters use to keep the flow going. There’s a reason copywriters make use of these bridge phrases. Not all of your sentences are going to be like your first punch line. Bridge phrases help maintain interest and keep your audience glued to your copy.
The idea is to keep the reader hooked on your content. Your prospective customer reads the first sentence, moves on to the next, then the next, and so on. What makes this so effortless is the use of bridge words or connectors that keep the audience engaged in the copy and encourage them to keep reading.
5. Emphasize Benefits, Not Features
Your product might have several exciting features, but to a prospect, that feature means nothing unless it is of use to them. Unfortunately, too many business emails commit the same mistake with their content revolving around features.
The customer will naturally ask, “But how does this feature help me?” when confronted with a copy that is too product-centric.
When you emphasize the benefits instead of the features, your copy becomes more customer-centric instead of brand-centric. It also gets more personalized, as the prospect knows what help they will get from buying or subscribing to your product.
Here’s how Dollar Shave Club does just that:
6. Use The Anchor Technique
You can add an anchor such as a price point to your email copy to act as a starting point for your reader. For example, you start by presenting a product at a price range of $400. You then explain why this price is justifiable for the product and the benefits this product will bring.
This anchor will then help you manipulate their perception of your offer at the end – you mention the product is available at half the price for a limited time. It encourages the reader to take action as they now have double reasons to see this offer as profitable.
You can use the anchor technique for not just price but free shipping, easy returns, plan upgrades, and so on.
7. Catch The Reader’s Attention In The Preview Text
The preview text is the text that appears just after the subject line, giving an idea of the content of an email. An often overlooked feature of email marketing, the preview text is crucial for higher open rates.
According to a Litmus-Fluent survey, 24% of respondents said they look at preview text first when deciding to open an email. In such a scenario, treat your preview text as a movie trailer, and make it so exciting and curiosity-inducing that the reader is compelled to open the email.
Some tips for a captivating preview text:
- Keep your preview text short—the shorter, the better.
- Personalize it
- Format it properly for mobile users
Tip – While writing a compelling email copy is essential, platforms can scale their businesses further by choosing a CRM tool to take control of their sales process steps.
8. Wield The Power Of Foot in The Door Technique
When a team posing as volunteer workers asked residents in a neighborhood to place prominent “Drive Carefully” billboards in their front yards, around 80% refused to do so.
The team then approached the control group and asked them to display placards that took up less space, and almost everyone agreed. Two weeks later, when they asked the same group to place the large “Drive Carefully,” 76% did so.
That’s the foot-in-the-door marketing technique for you.
It works on the following concept: Ask a small favor of someone. If they agree, chances are they will respond more positively to your subsequent big request.
You can use this same principle while drafting your email copy.
When starting, request your leads to do something small in return for something valuable. For example, you can ask them to subscribe to your newsletter or try out a product for free for a certain number of days. Keep gaining their trust so that later when you ask them for something big, like buying your product, they won’t hesitate.
9. Make Your Email Scannable
Do you think your reader has enough time to read through your entire email? Possibly, no.
In the age of bite-sized tweets and infographics, consumers are looking for a way to save time. By breaking down your email content into subheadings, bullet points, and brief paragraphs with white space, you allow your readers to scan your email and take action quickly.
Here’s how Beardbrand finds a creative way to re-engage its inactive users with an easily scannable email:
10. Target The 5 Golden Questions
The key to successful email copywriting is understanding your consumer’s pain points and coming up with a solution that helps them. These are the five golden questions your email should be able to answer:
- What is being sold?
- Who is selling it?
- Why should the customer buy it?
- How can he buy it?
- Why should he buy it now?
Here’s how Function of Beauty managed to put a check across all these five questions in their friendly and effective email:
Now that you’ve learned about actionable email copywriting techniques, it’s time for you to put them into action. Not only will email copywriting optimize your marketing strategy, but most of all, keep your audience engaged and convert them to loyal supporters of your brand.