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So You Want to Write an Email? (Part 2 of 2)

Posted @ 12:20 am by Dan Kutler | Category: Copy & Content, Email | 0 Comments

What we’ve learned about writing emails for one of the world’s largest search engines.

In Part 1 of this article, we discussed how to grab the attention of your email audience with a compelling subject line, preheader, headline and subhead. In Part 2, we’ll explore how to pay that off and reward the user with content that informs, inspires and flows right down to the sign-off.


Personalizing emails with a name, and relatable news or stats, makes you sound a little more human, and allows you to establish a 1:1 connection with your customer. It not only shows you’ve taken time to know them or their business, it results in higher open and read-through rates.


Though the body of your email does the heavy lifting of your message, its presentation should stay light. Shorter, simpler sentences are best. Divide those into a few short copy blocks and you’ll increase the chance your user will pick up what you’re putting down. Bullet points are another great way to make content more digestible.


Graphics and images add visual interest and can help illustrate your ideas in eye-catching ways. If you use one, just make sure you add a caption letting them know exactly what they’re looking at, and why it matters.


Sidebar spaces, or what we call a callout box, are prime real estate for highlighting key info touched on in the body of your email. Use it to draw attention to statistics, offer incentives, next steps, a phone number, a testimonial, a helpful link and more.


First rule of CTA: never ask the user to do more than one thing. The goal of most email communications is not only to guide the user to take some kind action, but to make it as easy as possible to do so. Want them to call you? “Call us at  … ” is all you have to say.


Much like the greeting of your email, saying goodbye reads more personally when you can do so from the perspective of an individual or a team.   Give it a try, –Dan.


As the percentage of people opening emails on mobile devices increases quarter by quarter, it’s critical to start optimizing your emails for smartphones and tablets. That means large buttons, light imagery and super concise copy that can be read — and acted upon — quickly.

Dan Kutler is a senior copywriter at SolutionSet in San Francisco. He writes email communications and direct marketing campaigns for one of SolutionSet’s biggest clients.



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