Engaging emails drive traffic and conversions.
If you came here looking for copywriting tips to create such emails, we’ve got you covered.
In this post, we handpicked five proven email copywriting techniques.
We’ll walk you through these must-do strategies for ecommerce brands to generate clicks and conversions from email marketing campaigns:
- Write enticing subject lines using formulas
- Segment your campaigns based on customer pain points
- Add pop culture references and anecdotes
- Check for text scannability
- Use actionable language for CTAs
Let’s get to it!
1. Make Your Subject Lines More Enticing
Subject lines can make or break your email marketing campaigns.
So any business owner that wants to make big bucks with emails must learn how to craft enticing subject lines.
Try these formulas to write subject lines:
- Ask a question. Subject lines with questions tend to make people think about the answer, which leads to engagement, i.e., “Want to get this discount coupon?”
- Mention a benefit. If the customer wants that benefit, they will be more likely to open that email, i.e., “A list of perfect weekend getaways inside.”
- Induce a sense of urgency. An eCommerce tactic that encourages customers to act immediately with a time limit, i.e., “Don’t Miss! 25% Off Ends Today!”
- Leave out some details. Spark curiosity by giving limited details about the email’s content, i.e., “Your Halloween treat is inside…”
Here are some more subject line examples to inspire you:
- This is crazy, but it’ll work for you.
- Have you seen this?
- A little something just for you….
- The 3 shoes you need this season…
Try these ways to write subject lines that get opened and stick to the methods that generate the highest open and click-through rate.
2. Address The Biggest Pain Points
You’ve done your research, and you know your audience needs. Many businesses choose to stop there. The most common thing they do is focus on those needs in email campaigns. That’s great, but not enough these days.
What could be more important than mentioning customer needs?
The biggest pain point.
That pain is the reason why they worry and look for products like yours. If you discover it, create entire email campaigns around that specific “pain point.”
Here’s how it’s done:
- Categorize pain points. Some pain points are similar, e.g., a customer who wants to be more productive will also appreciate more comfort and convenience.
- Segment customers. Segment your email subscribers by a specific pain point, e.g., product availability, cost, delivery, comfort, and productivity pain points.
- Create an email marketing campaign. Do that for each pain point category.
For example, helping with finding quality images for low prices is the main “pain point” addressed in this email from Dreamstime, a stock photography provider.
Take a look at the copy at the bottom, too. It beautifully supports the heading by giving details about how many stock photos a customer can access and for how much.
Choose an email builder with content blocks to be able to insert supporting copy to your messages, too. The customers will be more likely to click CTAs if you give specific details of the benefits they can get.
3. Consider Adding Pop Culture References and Anecdotes
People get enough boring emails, so giving them more makes no sense. A boring email text won’t engage customers, so you need to have something exciting in your emails.
Adding pop culture references and anecdotes to them once in a while is a good idea to increase engagement. Besides, they can make your customers feel like you’re talking to them as a friend.
Look at this email from Highway Robery, an eCommerce brand selling custom robes. It refers to Bobby Newport, a character from a massively popular TV show Parks and Recreation.
Any fan of Parks and Recreation will be excited to read this, so engaging them will be much easier. That’s why writing email copy like this is a great idea to improve open and click-through rates.
As for humor, feel free to use anecdotes once in a while.
“If humorous, playful language would be consistent with your brand’s style of communication, then it’s definitely a good idea for email marketing,” says Dorian Martin, a marketing writer at TrustMyPaper. “It’s a cheap but effective method that every business should try for email writing.”
Chubbies, a fashion brand, relies on humorous and positive messaging in their email marketing campaigns. This shopping cart abandonment email, for example, convinces the customer to finish the purchase in a really awesome way.
Tom Montgomery, a chief marketing officer at Chubbies, had to say this in a U.S. Chamber of Commerce interview about humorous marketing:
“Our mission is to treat our customers the way we treat our friends, to engage in the same way.”
By maintaining a similar communication style in emails, website copy, and other advertising, the brand creates a unique and consistent experience for its customers.
A word of caution. Be careful with humor, and don’t add it to every single email. Only relevant humor is funny, so plan email copy with it in mind and add where it feels right.
4. Check for Text Scannability
“I need to increase sales… So I’ll pack my emails with offers!”
That’s how some entrepreneurs think about doing email marketing. It might be easy to get carried away and add a lot of text in one email.
More product exposure means more sales, right?
Well, not exactly.
An email that packs a wall of text is a sure-fire way to overwhelm and confuse the customer. Why? Because people don’t read emails, they “scan” them.
To “scan” means to skip the top part and go through the body of the email, looking for interesting items. If they’re easily discoverable, then you’ve got a chance. If not, bye-bye email.
Check for these best practices of “scannable emails”:
- Keep paragraphs within two or three sentences
- Use headings and subheadings to break up the text
- Use bullet point to list items
This section from an H&M email shows different headings and a short paragraph that make reading easy.
So, go through campaigns and see where your customers can get bored with unnecessarily packed messages. If you need professional copywriting help, SupremeDissertations and TopEssayWriting are good places to go and get your email copy checked.
5. Use Actionable Language for CTAs
In many cases, your customers won’t read email copy, but “scan” it until they reach the CTA. At that point, it’s very important that the CTA shows a specific action, e.g., go to an online store or return to a shopping cart.
This cart recovery email from Vessi is a good example. It’s very easy to understand the purpose of the message without reading the text – all thanks to an action-oriented CTA copy.
Make sure that your CTA texts are between two and four words, too. It’s a good rule of thumb that makes it right for reading.
Last Thing: A/B Testing
Some of these email copywriting techniques might work okay for your business, while others might generate high ROI. The only way to know what works is to do A/B testing.
Create several versions of emails to test, send them out, and track their performance. Look for ways to improve both, and don’t be afraid to experiment — there’s always something to improve.