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Most of the marketing emails you send don’t get read beyond the title. But you can make a difference in writing exciting emails customers read and take action on. This art can pay off well, as emails remain an effective marketing channel in 2021, as long as you fit in readers’ narrow attention spans.
Purpose of this template
The purpose of this template is to provide a simple email structure as a base for exciting emails. The primary focus for this structure is emailing in nurture flows or brief news updates. You have created initial interest and been trusted with consent to receive emails. Now it is your job to add value and insights in each email in the flow.
This structure builds around seven essential building blocks:
- A mobile-centric layout – expect your readers to experience your mail on small screens only.
- An optimal sender – to avoid ending up in spam boxes
- A strong subject line – striking in the first second of customers attention span
- A succinct flagship message – create excitement in the next two seconds.
- A relevant number – creating fear of missing out on new facts.
- A brief copy – to fit a 30-45 second attention span for the whole email.
- Next step – each great email trigger an action by the reader.
Build your emails for a stressed audience reading on 5″ screens
Start with your email reading behaviors and ask yourself how they differ from mobile to laptop devices. You are likely to find more emails read on mobile devices, and the time dedicated to each email on a mobile device is short.
Design your layout for mobile devices and target to get in the whole mail on the first screen. Your two main objectives for each email are to trigger excitement about your topic and one action before the reader files your email.
Select an exciting sender of your email
The first hurdle to get the receiver to open your mail is to select an exciting sender. Both to secure you avoid ending up in the spam box and eliminating the risk of getting screened out due to lack of trust in the sender.
When you have the choice between a company and a personal address, consider a personal one. The average open-rate for emails in 2020 was 21.3%. Even at an average performance, 4 out of 5 emails never get opened, and the sender can be critical for your success.
Start strong with an enticing subject-line in forty characters
The role of the subject line is to make the reader open your email. Treat this subject line as the most critical sentence in the whole mail. Go straight to the point. Test it in the same way you test your blog headlines. Think through the mix of subject and excitement trigging words.
For mobile browsers in standard resolution, this means you have 40 characters at your disposal. An excellent source for inspiration is news headlines and Twitter influencers, as your subject is vital for success.
Succinct flagship message sparking interest to read
The following two seconds of your reader’s attention span are central to capture. Formulate a strong flagship message, incorporating both the interest trigger and the benefits you offer.
The best flagship messages focus on what your customers want and the benefits you can offer to deliver. Avoid pushing products in your flagship message and save that for the body. Tailor the length to fit in the pre-header, around two subject lines in length.
Make your email stick with a robust number
Numbers are essential in storytelling. A number in an email can spark interest in reading the whole mail and be the main thing your reader remembers from your mail.
These types of numbers are of high value
- Market size
- Size of a problem
- Improvement potential
- Proven outcomes
Geico’s “15 minutes can save you 15% or more on car insurance” is an excellent marketing one-liner, where numbers play a crucial role.
Keep your copy text succinct with few clear sentences
A concise email copy is limited to 50-125 words to fit your audience’s total attention span for a marketing email.
One way to deliver strong copy consistently is to adopt a base structure for all your email. Limit yourself to three sections. Tailor the number of sentences in each paragraph to your target audience – one sentence for executives, two for senior leaders, and three for a broader audience.
Possible flows for a marketing mail to promote a B2B solution can look like these:
- the solution you offer, the wants your audience has, and how to eliminate or reduce concerns and issues.
- what news you bring, why it matters, and whom you target
- problem, solution, benefits/outcomes
The average adult read 250 words per minute, and half of it could be a good starting point to see what fits your audience best.
Your mail is useless unless the audience take action
The icing on the cake for your email is facilitating for the reader to take action. Where you can target one of three outcomes
- Click on a link for further information immediately.
- Relay the mail to peers or direct reports.
- File the email to click on the provided link at a later stage.
End your email with a sentence to trigger one or two actions from your audience.
Invest minutes in writing to save seconds for your audience
Your ability to write impactful marketing emails is a valuable skill to master. Invest time in developing your layout and structure, as use it frequently to raise your game. Writing 50-125 word mails takes a longer time, but minutes invested by you save your customer seconds. To give readers time to get to the point of taking action.