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The Art Of Crafting An Effective E-Newsletter

Jan 7, 2008
From food chain owners to shoe suppliers, garment manufacturers to builders, pharmacists to realtors, who doesn't need to market one's business? And, when it comes to marketing, using email newsletters is a sure bet to reach prospects without too much money or hassle. However, if your emails don't reach the right prospects or your email copy is not appropriate, all the hard work you've done is a loss.

For recipients, it is a pain to open that inbox and find it filled with irrelevant email newsletters. However, not all e-newsletters are useless to the recipient. There may be something in the user's inbox that really interests them, but a useless, irrelevant newsletter ends up in the inbox, it's sure to get deleted or marked as spam.

That's why, as an email marketer, you must not only craft copy that holds the interest of reader, but create a subject line that convinces the reader to open your email altogether. Need some help? Here are a few guidelines to make your email newsletter copy more efficient.

Make the subject line the Punch Line -

Remember: when someone opens their email box, the subject line of your newsletter is the only thing they see of your email. And that particular line, however small it is, decides the entire fate of your email, whether it is going to be opened, deleted, or in the worst case, be reported as spam. So in other words, the utmost care must be taken when composing your subject line.

It will require a great deal of creativity on your part to craft a compelling phrase with so many words and characters. Your best bet is to be interesting and distinct, rather than making your subject line sound like just another promotional stunt. Try using various phrases meant to get the reader to go further, including 'How to..", "Secrets of", "Mistakes to avoid", etc.

Another tip? Make your subject line relevant. Don't sacrifice relevance in the interest of making an appealing subject line. Try striking the perfect balance between being informative and capturing your audience's attention. After all, you only have 60 characters or so to accomplish this.

Craft dynamic email newsletter copy -

When creating your newsletter copy, put more stress on the benefits of a product or service than features. Focus on how a product helps, how it makes life more convenient or saves time, rather than the actual parts and bells and whistles of the product itself. This gives the recipient a connection with the product and what it can do for them, rather than a standard, boring list of features that takes no skill to write or present.

Another good idea is to keep your e-newsletter informal. If you're writing copy, be down-to-earth in your writing. If you need help doing this, think about how you would present your product or service to your best friend if you were casually talking about it over coffee. Would you throw in a ton of huge, intimidating words or over-the-top language? No. Keep it simple and your readers will connect with the product better.

And ultimately, don't be afraid to be funny in your emails. Many times, humor works in email newsletters. Whether you use a self-deprecating story about something that happened to you or a business-related comic strip, show your readers that you're light hearted and don't take yourself too seriously. However, you must also use restraint. A long, rambling story about a product mix up will never be read by recipients because it takes up too much time. So use your humor sparingly and cut out the unnecessary chatter. A solid email newsletter with a touch of humor may not only get your recipients to laugh, but convince them to buy what you have to sell.
About the Author
Gary San is a best practices activist and advocate for Benchmark Email ( http://www.benchmarkemail.com/email-marketing.aspx ), a leading Web and permission-based email marketing service.
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