How to Write a Good Marketing Email

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If you’re anything like me… your inbox is cluttered with promotional emails from different retailers, publishers and everything in between offering 50% off this and Limited Time Offers! Well, if you’re also like me – your eyes glaze over and you delete all of the deals and promotions. Now, as a marketer – I am my own worst nightmare. I don’t open any emails, I don’t click through to the website and I even unsubscribe quite often from these emails (gasp)! So, what are these companies doing wrong and how can they better craft a good marketing email that will catch my attention? Here are a few tips on how to write a good marketing email and prevent me (and your other subscribers) from deleting your hand-crafted email.

Frequency

We can’t say that there is a magical number for the amount of emails that you are sending out. Sorry. But, consider who your audience is and how much time they have to read your emails. If you are targeting business professionals with a daily newsletter that is filled with information that they have to sift through – they’re probably not going to make the time to read it every day. However, if you send that same list a daily tip or motivational quote with a link back to a blog every day. You have a better chance of them opening it and reading it.

For promotional emails, you have to consider your brand. Do you want your brand to be known for their coupons? Think about Bed Bath & Beyond – they send out coupons in the mail probably once a week. Or is that just to me? They drive their in-store traffic by sending out coupons regularly. Will that work for your business? If not, then don’t keep sending them out. It just clutters your customer’s inbox and they’ll delete the really important emails – like your yearly sample sale!

Keep it consistent. If you plan to send out weekly emails – then keep to that schedule. Your customers will come to expect that email and know what it entails. Whether it’s a company update or a promotional email – create a schedule and stick to it.

Subject Line

Probably one of the most important things to consider when writing an email is the subject line. Be sure to:

  • Offer something enticing
  • Use strong words
  • Keep it simple
  • Include numbers (4 tips to… or 50% off)

Again, there is no magic length for a subject line. It really is going to vary per email. You want to get the point across without being too vague or too obscure. Don’t be afraid to test out different lengths of subject lines and see what works for your audience.

The Offer

This is the big thing that we’ve touched upon in the subject line and we’ll address tips on writing the copy below, but for right now – it’s time to determine what is this email about? What is the offer? You’ll want something that is of value to your customers. The more valuable they deem the offer, the more likely they are to open it, click through and who knows…maybe even buy!

A valuable offer is going to vary by company and by target audience. A free event may be enticing to some customers, while a deep discount or sale is going to be more attractive to other customers. Decide what is engaging to your customers and go with it.

Copy

Keep it short and keep it simple. About 54% of emails are opened on a mobile device – so do your customers want to scroll and read tiny print on their mobile phones? Probably while on their commute to work or multi-tasking? No? So keep the copy short, keep it personable and keep it on brand.

Customers are getting used to everything being personalized, their shopping experience, their interactions online and offline and now – they expect their emails to be catered to them. So, make it personal. Use the word ‘you’ in emails and don’t be afraid to address the customer by name in an email.

You’ll also want to create a tone for your emails and keep it consistent. Is your brand fun and casual? Then keep your tone fun and casual, don’t be afraid to crack a joke if it fits the brand. Have some fun with your emails, so that they stand apart from all of the other brands trying to do the same thing. Let your brand’s personality show through your emails.

One important thing to consider is that emails are a great opportunity to experiment with different initiatives and messages. See what works and doesn’t work. Sure, you may lose a few subscribers here and there – but the insight you gain into your customers is more valuable than that. Also, don’t be afraid to learn from the emails you receive. What entices you to click and to read? Study their habits, their frequency, and their offers and see how you can translate that for your brand.

Everything outlined above is just a framework. You’ll want to customize each section to your customers. You know them better than we do. And we’re always happy to help figure it out. Just give us a call.

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Vicky Simpson

Director of Content Strategy
Vicky Simpson is the Director of Content Strategy at Customer Magnetism. Her days are filled with brainstorms, content creation and promotion. When she's not being creative for CM, she is baking cakes or walking her dog!

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