How to Write a Convincing E-mail

by | Jun 5, 2017 | Money

Emails are the most common document in the business world. Unfortunately, many e-mails are so poorly written that recipients must struggle to figure out why they’re reading the e-mail and what they’re supposed to do about it.

Here’s a foolproof method to write e-mails that get the job done. Not only will these steps show you how to write an email that drives conversion, it will help improve your open rates and engagement.

Begin with the outcome in mind

The goal of any e-mail should always be to get the recipient(s) to take some kind of action. It could be to read your latest blog, download a free item, check out a new offer, or simply to improve their view of your brand.

Regardless, every email should advance your engagement with your subscriber.

Therefore, before you write anything, ask yourself: exactly what action do I want the recipient to make? Then, set out to write your e-mail with a clear goal.

Write your e-mail backwards, starting with your conclusion

Your conclusion is a statement of the action you want the recipient to make, based upon the contents of your e-mail.

In school, they probably taught you to start with an introduction and end with an conclusion. Wrong.

Nobody in the business world has time to wander through the development of an idea. If you don’t tell them the reason for the e-mail immediately, chances are they’ll just move on.

So you start with your conclusion. For example, suppose your goal is to get your subscriber to sign up for a free webinar.

WRONG:
Jim,
As you know, small businesses like yours struggle with knowing how to build their brand online. [yada, yada, yada] Therefore, you should consider joining our new webinar to teach you these skills.

RIGHT:
Jim,
Sign up today for this free webinar and you will soon be racking up huge sales!

Structure your supporting argument into bite size chunks.

Once you’ve stated your conclusion, develop the arguments that support your conclusion (i.e. the actions you want taken). To make your arguments “digestible,” break them into small “chunks,” and present each point with a similar format and sentence structure.

WRONG:
According to a recently published report, most small businesses go under in the first five years because they fail to… Often businesses think more about selling products and never stop to think about how their brand favorability impacts sales and growth. If you are not addressing the issue of brand management you will be left behind.

RIGHT:

Our webinar will:

  • Empower you to grow your brand
  • Increase overall sales
  • Help expand your market penetration

Support each argument with evidence

It’s been said that everyone has two things: a sphincter and an opinion. Unless you provide facts that back up your arguments, your e-mail becomes one giant, opinion and therefore, in the eyes of the recipient, you’ll probably seem like one, giant… well…, you get the idea.

WRONG:
A brand management campaign will increase sales because people will have a favorable opinion of your brand and feel better about buying your products.

RIGHT:
– Increase Sales. According to a national marketing survey of 1,000 small businesses, companies with an active brand management campaign experience 20% growth in sales.

Repeat your conclusion as a “call to action”

At the end of the e-mail, restate the conclusion in a way that provides the recipient with the next step that the recipient must take, assuming the recipient now agrees with your conclusion, based upon the force of your arguments and evidence. Keep it simple and specific.

WRONG:
You should attend our webinar.

RIGHT:
If you sign up for our free webinar now you will be one step closer to bigger profits.

Create a compelling subject line

Your subject line (aka “title”) is the most important part of an e-mail, which is why you write it last, after you’ve written down both your conclusion and the arguments and evidence that supports that conclusion.

Ideally, a subject line should accomplish two important tasks:

1) interest the recipient enough so that the e-mail gets opened and read, and

2) imply the conclusion that you want to the recipient to accept.

In most cases, the best way to accomplish both tasks is to encapsulate a benefit (or benefits) that will result from the decision that you’d like the recipient to make.

WRONG:
Subject: Attend a free webinar on brand awareness

RIGHT:
Subject: 10X your business with what you learn in our free webinar!

Conclusion

Email is a tremendous tool when used correctly. It takes careful planning, but if you follow the structure outlined above you can dramatically improve your open rates and engagement.

Question

How have you been using email for your online business?

Add your comment below and join the conversation

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David Cook

David Cook is the creator of Lucid Wisdom Digital Strategies, a creative marketing firm on the leading edge of thought and technology. David has a passion for personal achievement in all aspects of life and loves to pass on what he learns through his blogs.
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