As a copywriter in the digital age, I tend to write and edit more blog posts and website content than anything else. However, I do write my fair share of direct mail and print ads, as well as email blasts and e-newsletters.
Because we all receive so many of the latter, it is incredibly important to make sure your emails and e-newsletters stand out in an inbox – that’s where a really fabulous subject line comes in. But what happens when the recipient opens your email or newsletter? What makes them stick around, read it, and take action?
In addition to drawing from my own experience, I did some research on what makes emails and newsletters successful at convincing the reader to do something. As it turns out, it all comes down to basics. Here are the 3 must-have elements your digital correspondence should include:
More than anything else, you need outstanding writing if you want your email or e-newsletter to 1) get read and 2) generate action. Your writing must:
- Have a purpose: Make absolutely clear what the reader will learn and/or get, and how they can take action.
- Be lively: Inject energy and enthusiasm into your writing. Generate excitement or a sense of urgency.
- Be minimal: Instead of full length articles in your newsletter, write a header, an introductory sentence that serves as a teaser, a visual to illustrate the point, and a call-to-action so the reader can read more on your website. For your email blast, follow the same formula, but write 2-3 teaser sentences that are benefits-focused.
Keep the “minimal is good” mantra in mind when you start thinking about design. Minimal does not mean plain, stark, and boring. It means thoughtful, focused, and purposeful. It means that your email or newsletter is designed to do one thing: guide your reader to take action.
Speaking of taking action, you need a bold call-to-action that stands out in your email or newsletter. It could be a button that says “Buy Now!” or it could be a reminder of the benefit they’ll get by reading the rest of the article, downloading an ebook, joining your webinar, or calling for a free consultation.
What other elements make you read an email or an e-newsletter?
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