A headline at the top of the email can be the best way to grab your prospects’ attention and get them to follow through with your desired action (i.e., clicking the CTA and making a purchase). You never want to place it below a line (or several lines) of copy because your prospect will immediately read the headline and ignore the copy above. Focus on the prospect. The only thing that matters is outweighing purchase hesitations with benefits that drive prospects to convert. The first line focuses on the email sender (i.e., the company) using pronouns like “we’re” “us,” and “we.” The second line focuses on the prospect using language like “you” and “your.” Create marketing emails that are about the prospect and not the brand. Use the prospect’s name when appropriate. Create another attention-grabbing line of copy that again promises a resolution. They: Ask a question that makes prospects take notice Sound friendly and helpful Create a sense of urgency without being overbearing Focus on creating subject lines that convey the meaning of your email and incorporate some sense of curiosity. You’re building an email campaign that targets cart abandonments and have a list of four questions you could include in your first email: Do you still want your back-to-school items? Every time you include a question in your email copy, ask if the prospect will agree.
There’s one thing I hate about email marketing copy: You never know how it’s going to perform until the campaign goes live. What seemed like a rock-star line of copy could become the campaign’s kiss of death.
Sure, you can A/B test every element of each email all month, but taking that time means you’ll probably start losing leads. Fortunately, I’ve taken that route and want to share with you some valuable copywriting techniques that have bolstered the performance of my emails.
For 59% of surveyed B2B marketers, email is the best channel for generating revenue, likely because the majority of the audience voluntarily opted to receive the brand’s emails, indicating an interest in the company and its products or services.
Given the value of email and my experience testing what works better, here are eight email copywriting methods to help you successfully transform your prospects and leads into customers.
1. Write a minimum of 3 email versions
One of the biggest problems I’ve encountered is the inclination to create an email quickly, assume it checks all the boxes, and accept the first draft as your final draft.
Here’s how I approach writing new marketing emails:
- Write a rough draft.
- Use it to create two variations.
- Create a more refined, targeted third draft.
- Evaluate the need for additional drafts.
If you aren’t excited about the final draft, your audience won’t be either. Keep revising until you craft one you’re sure will convert prospects.
2. Start email structure with a headline
Many marketers forget that the email structure controls the flow of information – telling prospects how to read the email and interpret the information. Properly structuring the email is necessary to hold the recipients’ interest and have them view content in a desired order.
A headline at the top of the email can be the best way to grab your prospects’ attention and get them to follow through with your desired action (i.e., clicking the CTA and making a purchase).
I like to formulate headlines that intrigue and compel prospects to convert.
Always place the headline at the very top of your email. You never want to place it below a line (or several lines) of copy because your prospect will immediately read the headline and ignore the copy above. Structure your emails to mimic a natural reading flow: top-to-bottom and left-to-right.
Here are a few eye-catching headlines I’ve used in successful cart abandonment emails:
- Your shopping cart is lonely.
- You left some items in your cart.
- We’re holding your items for you.
- One less lonely shopping cart.
- Good news! Your shopping cart items are still available.
- Was there a problem during checkout?
3. Don’t worry about the length
Length is an irrelevant consideration when you’re creating a stellar email. What matters is the substance of your writing. If you can convey your message in two short paragraphs but spread it over seven paragraphs, that’s a problem.
Email copy needs to conform to the message, not the other way around. The message always comes first, otherwise, your recipients won’t have a clue what to do with your email.
Say enough to motivate prospects to take your desired action. The more focused your email is the better.
Sometimes prospects need a little more information and encouragement to convert. Focus on the prospect. That’s the bottom line. Forget about trimming your writing to fit above the fold. That doesn’t matter. The only thing that matters is outweighing purchase hesitations with benefits that drive prospects to convert.
4. Make it about the recipient
Believe it or not, using first-, second- or third-person nouns can make a huge difference on how your prospects react.
Choose which line of email copy you would respond to the best:
- We’re always looking for ways to improve, so please don’t hesitate to contact us and let us know how we can help.
- Don’t hesitate to let us know if you have any questions or feedback we can use to improve your experience.
The first line focuses on the email sender (i.e., the company) using pronouns like “we’re” “us,” and “we.” The second line focuses on the prospect using language like “you” and “your.”
Create marketing emails that are about the prospect and not the brand.
Some simple rules to follow:
- Use forms of second-person (i.e., you) and similar language.
- Avoid making your brand the focus by using first-person or other self-focused language.
- Use the prospect’s name when appropriate.
- Focus on being helpful.
5. Follow CTA best practices
The internet is flooded with CTA best-practice recommendations, but I’m focusing on the four most important ones: