10 TIPS TO WRITE BETTER EMAILS
By Susanne Rieker
Tell the truth: how often do you check your emails every day?
I always say I’m going to check mine less. I take the notifications off my phone. But then I keep checking it anyway.
I’m addicted to email and I guess so are you.
But no worries! That’s why email is such an amazing tool for your business!
While your social media posts rarely get shown to your followers these days unless you pay (Thanks stupid Facebook and Instagram algorithm, I hate you!), emails still get read, hurray!
Email isn’t just alive and twerking, it’s YOUR most powerful tool to connect to your audience.
Now that we established that you want email, let’s talk about what to write and share with your subscribers. I’m talking about your newsletter and how you can make it so freakin-amazing that your students can’t waaaait to see it in their inboxes!
The biggest problem with email is, that we all get a buttload of it. Most of that email gets ignored and piles up in the junk bin and unread pile.
Why? Because most email is boring. Salesy. Stiff and corporate. Who wants to read this???
Let’s make sure your emails don’t suffer that junk-bin fate, with these 10 steps:
#1 Keep it simple and use plain text emails
Emailing your list should feel like emailing a friend. You know, the emails you actually read. That’s why I, and most of the top online marketeers, use plain emails without a fancy, graphical template and I try and make it like it’s a personal email from a friend. If your emails feel like they’re coming from a bestie (rather than a business), more people will be excited to open them.
Another reason why you want to say buh-bye to fancy email templates is that they end up in the spam or promotion folder more often. The more stuff you cram in with formatting, tables, and even a lot of images, the more likely it isn’t going to make it through to the inbox of your subscribers.
#2 Write to one person
Here’s how it works. You write copy exactly how you would write to your friends. So if you wouldn’t say something to your friends, it does not belong in your copy.
Don’t start your emails or your videos with, “Hi guys,” or, “Hi yogis,” because chances are people are not sitting around a computer in a group. Right? They’re gonna read or watch you individually and you want them to feel like you are connecting with just them.
#3 Provide real value
This is a challenge for many yoga teachers. But listen up! If you get tripped up trying too hard to create valuable content, realize that value is way more than just how-to information.
Value could be in an email that makes you smile, that helps people learn something new, that inspires them or helps them escape. Maybe it reconnects them to their heart or maybe it makes them feel like they’ve reconnected with a friend. Quality is more important than quantity both in what you write and the frequency.
#4 Choose a subject line that invokes curiosity
Curiosity is one of the most powerful copywriting elements in existence. When you see copy that’s drenched in curiosity, it makes you say, “I’ve gotta know the answer to that. What is it?” It compels you to click, to read further. You wanna know what’s going on on the spot. Here’s an example:
Instead of using a subject like “Meditation tips for better sleep” you could use something like “What helps you sleep like a baby?”
A subject line like that makes us curious. Even if we think we know the answer, and we’re like, “Oooh, I know! It’s meditation,” we want to open it to see if we’re right.
#5 Personalize your emails
We all love to hear our names. Instant engagement. That’s why you want to use a personal salutation and include the name of your subscriber, if you have it. Thankfully it’s easy to set up. If you use Mailchimp, you have to add a so-called merge tag to your email text, for example like this:
You can replace the “Hi” with dear, hello, hey, or whatever other greeting you choose. The *|FNAME|* part is what will actually call your subscribers name into the newsletter after the greeting.
If you don’t have the names of all the people on your list, use this:
This will display a simple “Hello” if there is no first name present.
#6 Use emojis 😀❤🙏
Using emoji in place of words, or to complement words, is a great way to engage and connect with your subscribers. And engagement is the name of the game when it comes to email marketing. I use emojis frequently in my subject lines with great results. (Emojis are the only thing I use the touch pad on my MacBook Pro for 😊).
#7 Add images sparingly
I already shared why you shouldn’t use fancy email templates with lots of images. But sometimes a single image can help you draw attention to your content. For example when you tell your subscribers about your upcoming retreat, add an image. Make sure to include a link behind the image so it’s clickable.
#8 Create a welcome email
Sending a welcome email after someone subscribes is a stellar way to build know, like and trust. They won’t have to wait weeks for your next newsletter (by which time they might already have forgotten all about you and think “who is this random person sending me emails?” And then they unsubscribe…).
The first thing you should do in your welcome email is thank your new subscriber for joining your email list.
Next introduce yourself (keep it short – there’s no need to include your whole bio) and let your subscribers know what they can expect from your emails.
For example: “From now on, you’ll get regular love notes from me with news on my upcoming workshops and retreats, special deals and free yoga videos. I’ll also share stories from my life (that you get to hear nowhere else).”
Finally, if you offer your subscriber a freebie, you can use your welcome email to deliver that as well.
If you use Mailchimp, here’s a neat tutorial how to set up a welcome email.
#9 Be consistent
How often do you need to send out a newsletter? There is no fast rule, you have to decide something that works for you and that feels right for your audience.
You can send out a daily newsletter, weekly, bi-weekly or monthly. One time per month is a general minimum I’d recommend. People are busy, and they tend to forget about you when it goes much longer than that. Put it in your schedule and then commit to that.
#10 Sharpen your writing and make it scannable
Scannable… what??? Here’s the thing, people read differently on a computer or smartphone than let’s say a book. When it comes to emails, some people read the entire thing, but most just scan the content. Our eyes simply can’t handle huge masses of text online very well because it’s visually overwhelming
That’s why you want to use subheadings, paragraphs, bold copy where appropriate and bullet points. Strive for one single idea per sentence. Keep your paragraphs short. I suggest no more than 3 sentences or so per paragraph before you do a hard return. Keep it simple (here I go again), no crazy fonts or too many different colors or font sizes.
Bonus Tip: Always have a call to action
Even when you’re not writing to sell or promoting anything, give your readers something to do. People love to be helpful, and they love to engage. The more they interact with you and your emails, the stronger a connection they’ll feel.
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What’s your biggest struggle when it comes to ____?
Now it’s your turn. Let me know which of the tweaks I listed above are you going to try first 😊.