I apologize in advance for having a long post below, however the tips and techniques below will really change the way you write your emails to your readers while at the same time increasing your readers’ response. Below are the fundamental ways in writing responsive and effective emails to your readers.
#1 – Making Your Opening Email Catchy
When you begin an email marketing campaign, you don’t start with the marketing email, do you? If you do, you are really missing the boat on this one. Affiliate marketing email campagins do not begin with a marketing email. They begin with an opening email. The actually marketing email doesn’t come until later.
IMPORTANT! You don’t sell the product or service for which you launch your email marketing campagin in the marketing email itself. The selling of the product or service must be done long before the actual marketing email is sent.
The marketing email for the product or service comes last. The selling is done first. Many affiliate marketers believe that simply sending a marketing email for each product or service they represent to the members of their opt-in lists is sufficient. Not only is it not sufficient, it isn’t even in the neighborhood of sufficient. A combination selling and marketing email is an absolute ‘no-no’ in affiliate marketing.
First you make the recipients of your opt-in list aware that something is about to happen…..something good….something exciting. You’ve heard about using a tease in your subject line but what we are talking about here is a whole email that is meant to tease and to entice and cause anticipation.
This kind of email is called a “pre-sell” email. The object is to advertise and extoll the virtues of a product or service that isn’t yet ‘available’ and to make the members of your list see the advantages to themselves that this product or service can provide for them. You need to have them eagarly anticipating the arrival of your actual marketing email….the one that will send them scurrying for their credit cards because they already know that they want and need the product or service.
If you do the actual marketing email correctly, it will be very short. It will contain only short sentences and short paragraphs. It will have bullet points. That kind of email doesn’t afford you the opportunity to do much convincing. The convicing needs to have been already accomplished.
Your pre-sell emails can prime the pump, so to speak. They give you the opportunity to list the value they can provide to the members of your list. You afford you the opportunity to list the virtues of the product or service that you will be marketing well in advance of the actual marketing email and you can do it more that once.
You aren’t limited to sending only one pre-sell email to your list. You can send more if you want to and you should most likely want to. Repetition works. Repetition of a sales message is a proven selling technique.
Do remember, however, that when you send pre-sell email messages to your list that they still need to conform to the same standards that marketing email messages should adhere to.
Your first pre-sell message can announce the fact that this product or service is on the horizon or ‘Coming Soon’. The second pre-sell message can announce that the arrival of this product or service is emminent…..but not quite here yet. You might even offer to let the members of your list pre-order the product or service so that they are sure to get it.
Pre-selling a product or service isn’t just important. It is a vital part of affiliate marketing and one that you need to use and perfect if you are to become an effective affiliate marketer.
If you pre-sell your product or service effectively all of the selling will have already been accomplished and you can move on to counting your sales and your profits.
#2 – Writing the Body of Your Email Copy
The subject line of your marketing email is a vital part of the total email. Everybody agrees with that fact. You couldn’t find a single affiliate marketer or anyother kind of Internet marketer that would disagree.
However, while the object of the subject line is to convince the recipient to open and read the email, the object of the body of a marketing email is convince the recipient to take action and actually purchase the product or service that is being recommended to them.
It is vitally important to recognize and accept the fact that most of those who recieve your marketing emails and actually open them are not going to READ them. They will not read them word for word at any rate. They will scan them. They will read only enough words to get the idea of what is being sold at first.
IF (and ‘if’ is a very big word) you can convince them when they scan your marketing email message that they might be interested in what you are selling, then, and only then, will the really read everything that you have written.
i – Keep your marketing email short.
To the chagrin of email marketers, the attention span of the average computer user is extremely short. We have become an imatient nation. We want instant gratification as well as instant information. We do not want to bored with a lot of tediousness.
Back years and years ago there was a radio program, Dragnet, that even made it to the TV screens of Americn for awhile. The main character was Sgt. Joe Friday. One of his famous lines was, “Just the facts, ma’m. Just give us the facts.”
This should be your mantra as you compose the body of a marketing email. “Just the facts!” Each one should be stated as succinctly as possible and they should be bulleted.
ii – All sentences should be short, simple sentences.
Do not use run-on sentences that present more than one idea. The paragraphs should also be very short. One sentence paragraphs are fine. Two sentence paragraphs are about the maximum.
iii – Avoid the use of all capital letters.
All capital letters are the email equivalant of real world shouting or yelling and nobody likes to be yelled at. Not only is it rude, it is ineffective. You’ve no doubt seen televsion commercials that are made by the owners of the businesses being advertised. You know the ones….’Honest Joe’s Used Car Lot’. Honest Joe seems to think that if he yells loud enough, somebody will believe him.
It is fair to compare marketing email messages that have a lot of sentences that are all capital letters to an ‘Honest Joe’ television commericial. They are equally rude and equally ineffective. The one gets muted and the other gets deleted.
iv – Go easy on the exclamation marks.
One exclamation mark says that the sentence is emphatic. The use of several at the end of a sentence either means the sender hit the key too many times or he is yelling at the recipient. Neither is good.
A single exclamation point is a good thing. It indicates that an important point is being made in the preceeding sentence. The use of many exclamation points negates the value of one exclamation point. Many exclamation points do not make the preceeding statement more emphatic. They actually make is less emphatic.
v – Use bullet points.
Bulleted points make it easy for the recipients of your marketing email to pick out important facts. Remember that short attention span? They will look at the bulleted points and then decide whether to read the rest of your message.
vi – Spelling and grammar useage counts!
Check it carefully and remember not to stake your reputation on your spell check program.
#3 – Important Tips on Getting Your Email Read
The single most important factor of making sales when you are doing an email marketing campaign is getting the recipients of the marketing emails to acctually read your email messages. It is obvious that if they don’t read them, they won’t buy what you are selling.
You can do all of the technical things just right and still not have the recipients of your emails reading your messages and acting on them. It’s more than a little possible that the problem lies in what your messages say and how they say it.
Marketing emails need to be easy to read. It has been proven time and time again that email recipients will not read long blocks of text….not even if it from their mothers. One reason for this is eye strain. Reading text on a computer screen is much harder on the eyes than reading text on a printed page.
Make your marketing emails easy to read and easy to act upon. Keep your sentences and your paragraphs short. It’s been said before, but here it is again. People will not read long blocks of text. Don’t send it.
Use bullet points for emphasis rather than exclamation marks. The overuse of exclamation marks is a mistake that many affiliate marketers make. They assume that using many exclamation points gets the attention of the reader when, in fact, they are distracting.
Do not use all capital letters. Using all capital letters is not polite. It is considered to be shouting or yelling and your readers won’t appreciate you raising your voice to them.
Be absolutely certain that every word is spelled correctly and that the grammar useage is impeccable. I can’t tell you how turned-off misspelled words and poor grammar is to intelligent email recipients. Both will make you appear dumb in their eyes and they won’t be buying from someone they consider dumb or uneducated. Most spell check programs are very good but they are by no means infallible. You need to recognize misspelled words yourself. These programs will not correct words that are spelled correctly but still misused and are grammatically incorrect.
As to content, that is a whole different animal. It is a good thing to tie your email marketing campaign to a current event or a national holiday. People do seem to have one-track minds.
If it is near Christmas, they have Christmas on their brains. If it is election season, that’s what they are thinking about. When tax time rolls around, they suddenly remember that they have to actually file tax returns and taxes are at the front of their minds. They are concentrating on different subjects in the summer than they are in the winter. So tying your email marketing campaign to a holiday, an event or a season can help to assure that your marketing email message is not only opened and read but effective as well.
Using the correct tone when addressing the members of your opt-in list is important. When you send email to your list you should first be certain that you use the personalization feature that your autoreponder provides.
Second you need to ‘speak’ in a friendly but business-like tone. Think of the difference in the way you tell your boss why you are late and the way you tell your spouse why you are late. That’s what is meant by ‘tone’. You never ever talk down to your opt-in list members. You must not assume a tone that is too formal or too distant. On the other hand you must not speak in a tone that is too casual or too familiar.
#4 – Moving Your Reader to Take Action
“Keep your eye on the prize!” “Keep your eye on the ball!” Those are both old sayings and ones that has been paraphrased many times and many ways but the message is always the same. Don’t forget what is important.
There can be many distractions when you are an email marketer. When you are writing an important marketing email you can get distracted by the necessity of using the right form or keeping your sentences short or a dozen other things. The ‘ball’ or the ‘prize’ that you need to keep your eye on is that the objective of your marketing email is to entice the recipients to act on your recommendations and, in fact, drag out those credit cards and buy what you are selling or even to visit your website and take advantage of a free gift that you are giving away.
Sometimes the problem can be the form that is used in your email. It is important that the message be clear and that the main points are in bulleted form so that the email can be scanned easily by the recipients. Remember to use, short sentences and short paragraphs. Don’t use all capital sentences and curb your enthusiastic use of exclamation points.
Sometimes the whole problem can be summed up in just one word: procrastination. We seem to be a nation of procrastinators. We never do today what can be put off until tomorrow or, even better, indefinately. Can you imagine what would happen to the tax system if April 15th were only a suggestion and not an absolute deadline? Let’s see a showing of hands of all those who would meet a suggested tax filing deadline!
Wouldn’t it be nice if there were some sort of tried and true formula for getting the recipients to take action and buy what you are selling or download what you are giving them immediately? Maybe you should not suggest that they buy what you are selling when they get around to it or downloading what you are offering at their convenience. Perhaps you should be a bit more emphatic and a bit more specific, set limits and set deadlines.
By telling you to be more emphatic, I am in no way suggesting that you use a lot of exclamation points or a lot of big capital letter sentences. No. I’m suggesting that when you write your marketing email that you use bullet points that will cause the recipients of your marketing email to take action and to take it immediately.
A bullet point that says:
- For a limited time only!
Isn’t going to be all that effective.
A bullet point that says:
- This offer expires at midnight on November 10th!
This will be much more effective because it gives a specific deadline.
A bullet point that says:
- This is a limited offer!
Isn’t going to be very effective either.
One that says:
- This offer is limited to the first 200 applicants!
Might just get some action. Everybody wants to be first…even though they also will procrastinate given the opportunity.
The point is to provide the members of your opt-in list with an very good reason to take action and to take that action immediately.
It could be that you goofed and word-wrapped the links in your marketing message. Many email programs do not deliver word wrapped links. All the recipient will see is the words…there will be no link to click on. Remember to include full URL’s.
Keep your eye on the ball! Remeber that the main objective is to get the members of your opt-in list to click on the links you provide in your marketing email message.
#5 – How to Write Powerful P.S.es
There are several parts to an email. First there is the ‘from’ line. This is where your name or your company name goes. This tells the recipient who the email is from.
Next there is a suject line. This is an important part of an email message. You are limited to 50 characters here and those 50 characters can determine whether your email is opened and read or deleted. You will find thousands of words written on the subject of ‘subject lines’.
Then comes the body of the email message. You can find a lot of information concerning how important it is for you to get this part right. You will be told time and time again to keep it short. Keep you sentences and your paragraphs short. Use bullet points. Don’t use all capital letters. Don’t use too many exclamation points and on and on.
All of this is important information and it is all information that you need to read, understand and apply when writing your marketing emails.
After the body of the email comes the signature. The importance of the signature is rarely mentioned but it is also an important part of a marketing email. Be certain that you make those signature lines count. Use your name, your company name, a link to your webpage, as well as, a link to the product or service that you are selling.
Next comes your last opportunity to make your point and sell your product or service. It’s the P.S. line. P. S. is an acronym for ‘post script’ which means ‘after the signature’. It can be compared to ending a telephone conversation by saying, ‘Goodbye (signature) and don’t forget about the meeting tomorrow (P.S.).
View that P.S. as an opportunity to get in a parting shot or create a tease for an uncoming marketing email or as an incentive to join a teleseminar or a webinar.
The P.S. line can be used either as a hook-setting opportunity or as a baiting opportunity. Whatever way you use your P.S. line, it needs to be ‘above the fold’ or above the scoll line in order for it to be the most effective.
**The only thing that should ever always be below the scoll line is the opt-out option.
Using your P.S. line to ‘set the hook’ means using it to hit the main selling point made in your marketing email one more time.
P.S. Don’t forget that this product will save you both time AND money. (And provide the URL to the sales page once more.)
Another example would be:
P.S. Don’t forget that this offer ends at midnight on Novemer 16th. (And again, provide the URL to the sales page.)
Yes another example would be:
P.S. Don’t get left out! This offer is limited to the first 200 applicants. (And provide the URL to the sales page.)
Using the P.S. line as bait is a rather simple but very effective sales technique. When I say ‘bait’ (a word that I really dislike), what I am referring to is a tease or an incentive.
Once example of a P.S. line being used as ‘bait’ is:
P.S. Don’t miss the next newsletter. There will be an offer that will amaze you! (Add a link to your subscription opt-in box.)
Another example of a P.S. line being used as ‘bait’ is:
P.S. You don’t want to miss finding out why I got sent to jail which will be revealed during this teleseminar. (Add a link to the squeeze page for registering for the teleseminar.)
That’s all for now. I urge you to apply these fundamentals to your next email campaigns and you’ll be surprised at the significant changes in your conversions.
All The Best!