Any ambitious marketer knows that effective email copywriting is essential if you want to develop a strong and successful digital marketing strategy.
You might be thinking – “Cool, that makes sense. But how do I craft successful emails?” In our view, best practices are key. By learning how to understand and apply the foundations of email copywriting, you set yourself up to start nailing this medium.
It’s then up to you to finesse and bring the added layer of industry knowledge that enables you to truly connect with your target audience.
Ready to improve your email copywriting skills and skyrocket your email marketing metrics? Let’s run through the best practices you’ll need to succeed.
The email copywriting best practices experts use
1. Perfect your subject line
Email subject lines make an impact! If you want to perfect your email copywriting skills, you need to create an effective subject line that hooks the reader’s attention and aligns with the content of your campaign.
In email marketing, subject lines work similarly to keywords in SEO for a web page or blog post. By including key words in your subject line, you can offer a teaser of your message that lets readers know what to expect.
The best email subject lines are succinct yet enticing. Ask a question. Address the reader. Make a bold statement about your product or niche. Your job is to craft a subject line that helps your email content stand out and that invites consumers to want to know more.
2. Optimise preview text
Next up, it’s time to work on your preview text. This is the short text block that appears in a consumer’s inbox alongside the email subject line to hint at what’s to come in the body copy.
Email copywriting relies on you knowing how to make an impact quickly and effectively. Preview text is the perfect opportunity to achieve this! You can use this section of your email to say something additional to the subject line that gets readers interested in learning more about you and your offer.
Try writing preview text that acts as an extension of your email subject line to draw interest and invite engagement. This is a teaser for the entire email. Give away enough without playing all your cards from the outset. Good email copywriting is clever!
3. Make it scannable
Whether your subscribers read content on a desktop or use mobile devices, you must consider the way that readers scan on-screen text so that you can construct a scannable email structure.
Many on-screen readers scan content in an inverse pyramid formation. What does this mean? It means that readers are more likely to read text that appears at the top of your email. By the bottom, they might just be looking for key stand-out details.
Think about how your consumers will read your email, and craft content accordingly. Place the most relevant content at the top of your email, and leave plenty of white space to avoiding overwhelming consumers. Read through your own communications before you hit send to make sure it’s easy to scan.
4. Target pain points
Your consumers need you help to solve their problems. When you understand this, you can produce digital content that responds to consumer pain points, offering effective solutions that they can’t pass up.
Targeted marketing copy should always aim to answer a question for the reader. What problem can your product or service help with? What do consumers stand to gain when they engage with your business?
When you create email marketing copy, you should always be addressing at least one pain point with a practical resolution. Whenever you can, it’s a good idea to also incorporate social proof as evidence of the value your business provides.
5. Get personal
In the modern world, personalisation is important. When you are personal and authentic, you can more effectively connect with potential customers and craft copy that they relate to.
This can take a few formats. On one hand, you could share a personal anecdote or story that helps you establish relevancy and credibility while helping you build consumer relationships. On the other, you could adopt a customisation approach, using automation tools to address consumers by name in your email.
Think about the impression you make with the content you write, and look for opportunities to build a trusting relationship with your ideal consumer. Aim to connect with readers on a personal level that will make them more likely to support your business.
6. Stay on brand
No matter what kind of content you’re writing, it’s always important to stay on brand! This helps you develop your identity as a business, as well as supporting greater brand awareness.
When writing a marketing email, avoid industry jargon and instead aim to keep your brand voice clear and consistent. At every stage in your email marketing strategy, effective branding can help each individual email work for your broader business plan. Refer back to your brand marketing messaging guide at every turn.
By using your brand voice to inform your communication style, you can create email copy that reflects who you are, what you do and who you help. This can make a big difference to success of your email campaigns.
7. Know your message
Knowing your message is essential in helping you articulate it well. Every time you sit down to write email copy, you need to have a clear sense of the overall message you’re trying to convey.
When you know what you want to say, you can frame your content around this as a key theme. From your email subject line to body copy, you can integrate a message that runs throughout your content and leads towards your CTA.
Remember, the better you understand your message and the purpose of the email, the better consumers will understand it. By knowing and communicating your brand message well, you can ensure that every piece of email copy is part of a bigger picture.
8. Understand your target market
Similarly, it’s important that you understand and can relate to your target audience in ways that help you communicate well with this readership. Knowing your customers helps you serve them better.
Do your research, and develop a buyer persona that helps you gain context for what a paying customer looks like at your business. Consider what satisfied customers have to save about your brand, and know who you’re writing for.
When you write for a specific, tailored audience, you can actually end up gaining more subscribers! Your email copy might not be for everyone, but it can directly target the select few who are more likely to love and buy from your brand.
9. Use a call to action
No matter what content you’re crafting, a clear call to action is non-negotiable! This is your chance to direct the buyer’s journey and show consumers how to interact with your email and your brand.
By using actionable language that directs readers to take the next step, you can be in charge of how your email copywriting aims to convert. Are you asking consumers to send a reply? Visit your website? Enter a competition? Purchase a specific product or service?
Generally, a call to action should appear at the end of your email, rounding out the rest of your content. A good call to action should stand out on the page and attract extra attention, perhaps using colour or even a clickable button.
10. Check your insights
The best way to ensure that your email marketing is on the right track and enhancing to your overall marketing strategy is by reviewing your stats! Keeping up to date with performance metrics can help you develop a strategic marketing plan.
Don’t stop thinking about content after sending your email! Instead, use the tools offered by your email service provider to analyse performance metrics and identify ways to grow and improve in the future.
Important insights may include your email open rate and click through rates, with these stats revealing the effectiveness of your subject line copy and email body content. You might also review email subscribers and time spent reading.
Best practice examples of email copywriting
Want to see what effective email copy looks like in action? Below is an example of a high-performing Prozely marketing email.
Subject line: Create Better Content Than Ever Before!
Preview text: The experts show you how to craft copy that converts.
Struggling to put together effective content?
Whether you’re working on a landing page, a blog post, or something else entirely, the expert writers at Prozely are here to help! Check out these practical tips.
1. Make a plan, and stick to your strategy.
2. Write for your audience and their interests.
3. Stay consistent with your brand.
4. Always include a clear CTA to wrap up.
5. Consider getting help from a professional.
Easy! With these skills on your side, you can plan to create better content than ever before.
CTA: Need more support? Visit the Prozely website, and submit a brief today!
Why it works
Why is this email so effective? It works because it relies on the pillars of effective copywriting.
This example email starts with a subject line that targets a pain point and gives the reader a reason to buy into the solution the email itself can offer.
The preview text expands on the promise of the subject line. It cites experts, which offers credibility. It gives readers enough information so that they know what to expect without giving away the key points of the email itself.
The body copy is clear and targeted. It uses a consistent brand voice and centers the needs of the consumer. The content is short, succinct, and easy to scan. It gives readers practical support while tying back into the brand offer.
Finally, the CTA is clear, concise, and effective. It tells consumers what to do next and where they can find additional support with the challenges addressed by the email.
Add in a few basic graphic elements, such as photos, icons, buttons, and logos, and this email is ready to go!
Looking for a shortcut to compelling email copy?
Still feeling overwhelmed by the idea of writing your own email marketing copy? Don’t panic!
At Prozely, we have a team of talented writers who are well-versed in creating effective email content across a range of industries and niches. We’d be happy to help!