5 Tips to Better Emails and Posts
When you’re running around doing the jobs of several people, it’s very easy to let complacency creep in and that’s when mistakes begin to happen, or you might send out emails you’re 100% happy with. Use this guide to help you consider five email and post mistakes to avoid and what’s important to you and your subscribers.
1. You’ve got typos
We’ve all done it. Sent an email out and made a grammatical error or a typo because we’ve not checked our emails properly. The easiest thing is to write out your email copy in a word processor like Word, Pages or even Google Drive and you’ll be able to check the words you’ve spelled wrong. This happens more often than you might think. I have seen many, many big companies send out emails, newsletters, etc., with far too many typos (I just call it lazy!). I also do it from time to time when I am in a hurry and skip that third edit. Take your time and do it right.
Also, if you can get someone else to check the document; four eyes are better than two! If you can’t do that, walk away from it and work on something else for 20 minutes, then come back and read it again. You’ll notice errors much more easily.
2. Not keeping it personal
This is where you really can win friends and influence your “tribe.” One thing that is challenging to remember is that this really isn’t about you, although you may think it is. The whole purpose of writing posts, emails and newsletters should be to inform. The way I write is to just let it flow from my mind to a text editor (it doesn’t matter which one you use). I can usually write up to 1,000 words pretty easily. Once that is “down,” I rewrite. I may do several rewrites until I think my message is ready to go. I then send it to a friend to read, as well. The more you keep it personal, the more your subscribers will follow and comment.
3. Where’s the story?
People like stories. We read constantly. Many thought the “read” was dead. And then there are those who mistakenly forecast that books were also dead. Not true! I believe we read more than ever. We read the paper. We (still) read books. We read on our devices: computers, tablets, phones, etc. There’s no stopping us!
If you write in the manner of the material you read and the way you speak, more times than not you will write stories… stories with themes and messages. Whether it’s one or two paragraphs doesn’t really matter as long as you keep it in story form. If you met someone and they started the conversation by rattling off a bunch of facts, you would probably smile politely and turn around and walk away. If the conversation began with a comment like this, “You won’t believe what happened to me, today,” you might want to stay and hear the story. Weave a tale. Connect the dots (facts) with interweaving story lines.
4.. Your email doesn’t look like your website
Consistent branding really gives the customer a feel for your company, blog or website, so try and make it all match up with the same colors, fonts, logos etc. If you’re using fancy fonts on your site, you should choose the closest matching standard font. Restrict yourself to one or two fonts and colors. The nicest emails keep it simple.
People like continuity and consistency. They like to follow the flow, so to speak, of similar typefaces. Mixing different fonts only works in design when you are making posters and other creative projects.
5. (Finally!) It’s all about me, me, me
When thinking about what to write in your next email, consider “How does the recipient benefit from this? Will they want to hear what I’m saying?”
Always remember that if you keep telling the customer what you want to say and not considering what they will get from the email, they’ll soon switch off and stop reading your emails or unsubscribe.
Picture your type of customer in your mind – create a character for him/her and imagine that you’re writing to just one person. You can’t please everyone all the time, but you can create something that is pleasing to read.