How to create emails that people will actually open, read, and take action

Whenever we communicate, we want to see someone we care about to take an action towards an objective we believe that can tremendously help/solve their problem.

But before we can get our targeted customers to take that action from an email message/campaign, two things need to be done really well:

  1. You have to write email subject lines that clearly communicate to your customers desire and need
  2. You have to create a sense of urgency and/or remark ability that will cause them to click on your email, call you, or share with others

Part 1 - How to write email subject lines that people will actually open

Ensure the subject line clearly communicates what is in it for your customer. Examples:

  • Are you having a limited time 50% off? Tell your customer that
  • Do you have a new webinar or a new course available? Tell your customer that
  • Do you have new specials and promos? Tell your customer that

Be specific and tell your customer in the subject line what's in it for them.

Or, you can create a sense of curiosity for your customer, where your customer would want to know the answer to that story. Here are a few examples:

  • 1 thing every great company does well
  • What NOT to write in your subject lines
  • How [client] made 250k in 30 days

Above all, you should always A/B test your email subject lines.

Back in 2008, the Obama campaign team split-tested several email subject lines to raise support for the campaign. The results were incredible. The top result was projected to raise $2.5 million, whereas the lowest result only $403,603…that's a 629% difference.

From Bloomberg

Part 2 - How to design emails that people will actually click through

After you've started with a compelling subject line, it's time to think about your email design to maximise the action you want your customer to take.

Taking  an example from above as the subject line: 50% Off Sale (24hrs only)

Instead of listing all the products within your email, A/B test your email creatives with a long vs short version.

Long form would include a few images and description of your sale item, whereas in the short form, you place the focus on the 50% off and a bold call to action to drive the customer to your site (specifically a landing page with 2-3 featured items, followed by other items).

Tip! Over the years of running email marketing experiments for our clients, we have found over and over again, across various industries, blurred out email creatives with a strong call to action drive the highest click-through rates and impact the bottom line for sale item email marketing campaigns.

One area where most companies leave tons of opportunity is with their email marketing campaigns. To ensure your email marketing is driving you results, have us review your email marketing campaigns and provide your team with at least three improvements that will further improve your open rate, click through rate, and bottom line.

More StoryBrand Insights.