Little Tricks to Write Better Emails That Aren’t Boring
A lot of people tell us they think their emails are boring and don't get a lot of attention. So we've decided to share some tricks to help you write better emails that aren't boring.
Ready to find out how to give your email marketing a little makeover?
SOME EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: (0:11) Want to get more sales from your email marketing? Grab our Click Tricks. (3:39) Fancy a 14-day FREE trial with Keap? (6:04) It's about them - it's not about you. (7:42) Focus on delivering value in your emails. (11:39) Your name and what it stands for is what gets your emails opened. (13:25) Email regularly (but not sales pitches!) (14:28) Make your content 'sticky'. (17:57) Tell stories and start in the middle of the action. (22:50) Switch your mindset around - your emails are interesting! (27:28) Subject line of the week.
Want to get more sales from your email marketing?
We put a little something together for you – it's really cool and it's FREE (yes, it's cool and free – we're nice like that). If you want to make more sales from your email marketing, you need those clicks on the things that you're selling!
So we've got 12 creative ways to help you get more clicks in every email you send. It's a FREE download, and it's called Click Tricks. You can grab it here.
It's about them – it's not about you!
The first thing worth pointing out to help you write better emails is that you shouldn't confuse the things that are important to you (like your products and services) with what's important to your readers.
We see people talk to their audience in internal business language all the time. Instead, you need to speak in a way that's relevant to your audience. So if you're emailing about offers and launches, that's internal language – it's not about your customers. It's about you and your business. And it means your emails are about you and not your audience.
And what's the first thing we learn about marketing? That it shouldn't be about you! It should be about the things that are important to your audience. So let's not talk about our own products and services all the time, shall we?
Focus on delivering value in your emails
Of course, this is your email list and people are there to find out about you. But if you keep talking about what your products, then you're barking out a sales message all the time. So many email marketers do that! And sadly, there's nothing more to their emails. If the paid product didn’t exist, there would be nothing of value there. And that's not cool.
Let's think about newspapers for a second. They're full of content, stories, and value. And in between all the content you find adverts. But if the newspapers were just full of ads and nothing else, no one would buy them!
It's the same for your emails – if they're full of ads, no one will want to read them. The key is to include value in your emails.
Your name is what gets your emails opened
When someone receives your emails, the number one thing that gets them to open them is your name. So always include your name as the sender.
But what do people think when they see your name in their inbox? What do they associate it with? Is it sales? Are you that type of email marketer? Because if you are, and the person you’re emailing isn't in the market for what you’re selling right now, they won't even open your emails.
What's inside your email might be good – great, even! You might have excellent copywriting skills. But that's all wasted if only the people who have buying intent (i.e. the people who are already interested in your product) are opening your emails.
Stop email selling and start email marketing
Your email marketing would be a lot more effective if you stopped email selling and started email marketing . In other words, you want to reach those people who don't have a buyer intent just yet. And the way to do that is to show up with value.
When they get your emails, your readers want to learn something or be entertained or inspired. If you consistently do this, then they're going to open your emails whenever they see your name. There are so many ways of delivering values – we teach about 9 different types that people can extract from your emails.
And when you deliver value (and your subscribers start to expect it from you), they will open your emails. This allows you to put your sales message in front of more people (even those who aren't ready to buy yet) and pull them over the threshold and into buying.
Email regularly (but not sales pitches!)
Even if you don’t sell anything in your emails, you should still send an email newsletter every day or as often and regularly as possible. Why? Because that helps you deepen the relationships with your clients and build trust. When you deliver value on a regular basis, it's not about ‘sneaking in' a sales pitch here and there. In fact, we recommend you don't do that because then it feels like your sales pitch has come out of nowhere.
Instead, you want to send out emails that people love reading – emails with value and interesting stuff that are super short and easy to consume. Like a hint, a tip, or a story. Share inspiration relating to your industry and what you teach or sell.
And then every once in a while, when you have a promotion happening, dive deeper into a sales pitch. We tend to do that every 4-6 weeks, but the rest of the time in between promotions make sure you show up every day or as often as your frequency allows with inspiration and value.
Make your content ‘sticky'
It’s important to remember that the point of marketing (any marketing) is to grab people’s attention and leave as much of our messaging stuck inside their brains. If someone hears your message and has no clue or recollection of it a minute later, it was a waste of time. That's why advertising on TV and slogans work. It's because of repetition – because they're sticky.
So what do you do to make your content stickier? First of all, avoid using clichés because people don't pay attention to them – they have no emotional resonance with clichés at all because they've heard them all before. So remove any sort of everyday turns of phrases or catchphrases that aren’t your own. Instead, play with the words and do something different – come up with your own ways of expressing yourself.
Use colloquial language and express opinions
A way to do this is to use your local colloquial language, for example. Talk about things the way you would with your friends or family – think about how you’d say something in real life if you weren’t sitting in front of a screen typing out a message.
Or think about the strong opinions you have and then stand by them. Of course, your opinions may evolve over time, but make sure you have an opinion on the things that matter to you! Don't waste your time trying to be impartial so you don't divide your audience or offend people. We probably offend someone new every day because of the things we say, and that's okay. Because people can choose to continue to read your emails or not. But the reason why people stick around with us is because we have an opinion and an attitude. We’re not bland. We express things in a strong way, and we encourage you to do the same.
If you're wishy washy about the way you express yourself, people won't trust you as much because they won't know what you stand for. You don't want to be the person who agrees with someone to their face and then turns around and agrees with someone else who has the opposite idea. That doesn’t build trust – it does quite the opposite, in fact. Because people don't want to do business with someone who doesn't stand for anything.
So have an opinion and stand by it. It will help you cut through this bland, beige, boring, murky land, attract people to you, and keep them reading your emails.
Another thing we recommend you do is to share the things that happen in your life – things that might not have to do with your business but that people can latch onto and relate to. For example, Rob recently sent an email about the fact that when you put the washing machine on, the pressure suddenly goes askew in the shower. People know about that because it’s happened to them too. And suddenly they want to share their opinion or experience.
Another time Rob sent out an email talking about how he bought a new mattress during the pandemic, and people started replying asking if he had any recommendations. Or people will ask us all the time about our tech setup – because that's interesting to them. And this shows we’ve become a source of greater interest than just email marketing. It's all about everyday things – it's about what interests your audience.
Start in the middle of the action
When you're telling stories, don't forget to start in the middle of the action. You don’t want to write a story all the way from the beginning. If you think about James Bond movies, they start in the middle of the action – it’s often the running or the chase. That’s because the action is much more attractive – it acts like a centrifugal force or a gravitational pull. If the thing’s already spinning, it pulls people in.
If you're sat somewhere perfectly still, and something moves in the background, that’s what you notice. We’re evolutionarily trained to tune into movement, so it naturally grabs our attention. And our brains do the same. The minute we detect some motion, activity, or movement, our brains latch on to that, and that’s powerful.
So make sure your emails are ‘in motion’. And the simplest way to do this is to write your email first and then delete the first couple of paragraphs. That was just you getting warmed up, and your audience doesn't need to see you warming up, do they?
Switch your mindset around – your emails are interesting!
And last but not least, switch your mindset around. Somehow we’ve decided that the emails that land in our inboxes are boring and no one likes to receive them or read them. But it's time you decide that your emails aren't boring – they're just content on the internet.
And people can enjoy receiving your emails because they like having access to the right content on the internet. When you start thinking like that, you'll start to write better emails because you'll look for strategies, tactics, and ideas to make them better.
If everytime you run some kind of sales campaign, you do the same thing over and over, it's time to switch things up. We're naturally creative so we're constantly coming up with new different angles. For example, we have 5 completely different email sequences (each made up of multiple emails) to sell and promote our membership – The League. And we teach all that in more detail inside our membership, where we share creative solutions to presenting and promoting your products in different ways to help you avoid become boring in the eyes of your subscribers.
Remember that people get excited if something's new and innovative. If they've seen it before, they don’t pay attention to it.
Subject line of the week
This week’s subject line of the week is “100% email delivery”. This one's a little bit off the wall for us because it's about the actual thing we talk about (email delivery). Most of the subject lines we normally use are based on the story in the email or the lesson, rather than the thing we're selling. But this one was very direct, and using “100%” in it is what made it interesting and encouraged subscribers to open it.
Useful Episode Resources
FREE list of the top 10 books to improve your email marketing
If you want to write better emails, come up with better content, and move your readers to click and buy, here's how. We put together this list of our Top 10 most highly recommended books that will improve all areas of your email marketing (including some underground treasures that we happened upon, which have been game-changing for us). Grab your FREE list here.
Join our FREE Facebook group
If you want to chat about how you can maximise the value of your email list and make more money from every subscriber, we can help! We know your business is different, so come and hang out in our FREE Facebook group, the Email Marketing Show Community for Course Creators and Coaches. We share a lot of training and resources, and you can talk about what you're up to.
Try ResponseSuite for $1
This week's episode is sponsored by ResponseSuite.com, the survey quiz and application form tool that we created specifically for small businesses like you to integrate with your marketing systems to segment your subscribers and make more sales. Try it out for 14 days for just $1.
Join The League Membership
Not sick of us yet? Every day we hang out in our amazing community of Email Marketing Heroes. We share all of our training and campaigns and a whole bunch of other stuff. If you're looking to learn how to use psychology-driven marketing to level up your email campaigns, come and check out The League Membership. It's the number one place to hang out and grow your email marketing. Best news yet? You can apply everything we talk about in this show.
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