10-Part Email Cheat Sheet to Make Your Email Campaigns Much More Profitable
Some (not all) of the ideas and concepts I teach, when it comes to email, are not for the faint of heart. Not for delicate darlings, and NOT for people who are afraid to stand out – and stand up in their overcrowded marketplace.
These are ideas and techniques I’ve used myself over the years – and ones that have put a nice chunk of change in my grubby little hands; I’m certain they will do the same for you.
First things first:
Your emails are boring.
There, I said it.
Now let’s get this party started….
Email Cheat Sheet Idea One:
Who Are You Talking To?
Let’s start off this issue with a quote from one of the greatest copywriters who ever lived:
John Wayne and Boy George both have their raving fans… and never the twain shall meet. Some people like macho guys who mow down Japanese people with machine guns, and some people like sexually confused singers who wear dresses… and never the twain shall meet
What was he saying?
What Gary was saying, of course, is that Boy George fans and John Wayne fans are polar opposites. And if you try to address both sets of people with the same marketing message, you ARE screwing yourself to the wall.
And that’s what most people are doing when writing emails.
They write to everybody in the same tone, trying desperately to NOT offend, and hoping ALL their subscribers will resonate with their message.
They won’t. Why?
Because when you address both sets of people with the same message, you end up having little affect on either.
That’s why your competitors write emails that are boring, mundane, trite.
Watered down, diluted… drivel.
Trying to do the impossible.
And what about you?
Do you write to emotionally engage?
Or are your emails watered down, diluted trite just like all the rest?
If they are, I encourage you to step back and take notice.
Because like it or not, you may be falling victim to the optimism bias and believe you are the next Richard Branson in the making, or even that your product is unique enough to stand out on its own.
Chances are that it’s not.
That goes for the affiliate products you promote too.
And so, YOU have to make an important decision on how you move forward right now.
Just ask yourself, “How has it worked for me so far?”
Am I just another “me too” people pleasing ponce afraid to wear my heart on my sleeve?
Am I following what everyone else is doing? Even though everyone else is struggling.
Think about it.
No, really think about it.
Email Cheat Sheet Idea Two:
Subject Lines Are NOT Complicated
I personally don’t understand why there’s so much noise banging about the web about subject lines – and how important they are. Don’t get it twisted though, I’m not suggesting they aren’t important; just that they’re not as important as many-a-guru would lead you to believe.
A quick and dirty core principle to follow, is to go look at what most people teach you about subject lines; ignore everything they say, and seek out alternatives. Surely that’s the best way to get attention without looking like everyone else.
Here’s a simple rule that I follow…
1) Grab Attention
2) Generate Curiosity
3) Make It Relevant
Not really difficult, is it?
Grab attention by injecting kooky, controversial, bizarre and shock elements into your subject lines
Example: Why I beat my 10-year-old nephew to death with a baseball bat
Maybe, but does it grab your attention?
You don’t, of course, have to be so bold. I wrote that subject line to my own email list – and it got a whopping response. As I expected it to. But I wrote it to a list that knows I like to push the envelope from time to time. They understand that I like to make my content entertaining and interesting, hence the reason they open my emails.
Now, obviously I didn’t beat my 10-year-old nephew with a baseball bat – and anyone who thought that I did, has some serious mental issues to deal with – and someone I don’t want on my email list to begin with.
So that subject line gets attention, and at the same time helps me get rid of the literalists who can’t understand humour when it hits them square in their square heads.
Another Example of attention grabbing subject lines:
Are you selling to peasants, commoners, tramps and hobos?
Oompa Lumpa showed me his Willy Wonka
You get the idea.
Anything that snaps people out of their nap, is always a great way to generate attention. Remember, people are bored out of their minds every day online. Give them a little entertainment and they’ll love you for it.
Generate Curiosity by creating an
itch and asking questions
Example: This is a disaster waiting to happen
You want to know what this “disaster waiting to happen” is, right?
This one: Everyone is talking about this, but it has its faults
Or this one: Should you use profanity in your emails?
Or: What do you think of this? … it makes no sense to me
Play around with those ones and then start creating your own.
I like to write subject lines that are far removed from anything “markety” – yes that’s a real word. Anything that generates curiosity, has an element of “shock” value – and is relevant to the email itself, will do just fine.
Email Cheat Sheet Idea Three:
The Opening To Your Email
Almost everyone screws this up.
You know why people scan through the emails inside their inbox? It’s because the very first sentence or paragraph they read, has already bored them to tears. That’s a generalisation for sure, but it isn’t going to help the readability of your email if the opening doesn’t grab your reader by the short ‘n curly’s.
Original: If you want to make your website much more profitable, you have to take a look at this.
Rewrite: Your website sucks, and it’s losing you money. Take a look at this.
Second one is much more attention grabbing, right?
Always open your email with a bang. Grab the reader’s attention immediately. You have such a small window of opportunity to reel them in; don’t fuck it up by pissing about with passive, boring sentences and paragraphs.
Email Cheat Sheet Idea Four:
Remember what I said at the start of this cheat sheet?
Jeez. I said that your emails are boring.
Statistically, from the comfortable chair I’m perched up on at the mo, almost ALL emails are boring.
ALL OF THEM.
Well, maybe 99%.
Because people write to NOT offend.
They write to people please.
They want the people on their lists to like them.
And that’s fine. I want to be liked as much as the next guy, but I ONLY want to be liked by the people that matter. Everyone else can take a run and jump for all I care.
Emails are boring to read, because they are written from a place of timidity. Written in fear. And like it or not, timidly moves no one to do nothing much of anything.
So write with confidence. Inject emotion into your emails.
What has this got to do with “unsubscribes?”
Well, just about everything is all.
When you care about people unsubscribing from your list, it affects your writing. You no longer write with freedom. Instead, you care more about not offending than you do about connecting with similar and like-minded people such as your good self.
However, when you really don’t give a two hoots whether people unsubscribe, or not, you then just let it all hang out – and you begin to inject more enthusiasm into your emails.
Thing is, people will unsubscribe from your list regardless. There are, of course, many reasons for this. Maybe your content is crap. Maybe you push your products down their throats at any given opportunity.
It’s a good thing when people leave your email list, though.
No, really, it is.
As long as you’re writing with confidence and freedom, and you are NOT afraid to put personality into your emails, chances are that you’ll get unsuited people off your list in the process. That’s the good unsubscribing kind you’re after.
Have friends over.
Throw a backyard barbeque.
Grab a granny and do the tango.
The fact remains; most people on your list shouldn’t be there in the first place. Your open rates will statistically prove this to you without question. So best get rid of them by being yourself without restriction, instead of trying to appease them, yes?
Email Cheat Sheet Idea Five:
Tell Personal Stories
Preferably those stories should be one’s people can relate to.
You think people on your list don’t care about what happens to you throughout the day?
They do – and even if they really don’t, as long as they read the story, they’ll still resonate with you.
And that’s very important in a grubby little industry like ours.
You know, people now, more than ever, are looking for people to buy into before they buy into their products.
With so many scams out there, getting TRUST is the biggest stumbling block for most marketers. It’s arguably the scarcest commodity online. And with email, you have the perfect medium to get that trust quicker than anywhere else.
Here’s a quick example:
Not all good deeds go unpunished.
Yesterday, yours truly done such a good deed for his good auld mammy.
She’s on holiday you see, so being the good son that I am, I decided to pop over to the house and take her car out for a fix up.
The NCT is up on the car next month, so it needed a service.
I crashed the car.
And I’m dead when she gets home.
Simple little light-hearted story that puts the reader into “imagination” mode and helps them see me in a much more human light.
I then just segue into anything else related to marketing.
Not difficult, right?
Telling stories like that one there takes the reader out of “oh he’s going to sell me something” and puts them into “oh, he’s so fucking dead when his Mother gets hold of him.”
They don’t have to be epic.
They don’t have to be long.
They don’t even have to be really that exciting as long as you can inject a little humour into them.
Email Cheat Sheet Idea Six:
Use Templates For Your Emails
Sometimes it can be difficult coming up with a theme for your emails.
What will I talk about?
With templates, you can fast track the writing process if you eliminate any unnecessary noise holding you back.
In the early days I set up a simple writing schedule like so…
Monday: Write an email about a T.V show, Movie, Current even etc.
Tuesday: Write an email about something motivational.
Wednesday: Write an email about a popular question being asked in a popular forum
…etc etc etc
At last when it came to a certain day, I had a theme in mind on what to create an email about – and that made it much easier to come up with an email idea.
Here’s an example of an email for Monday…
You’ve seen “The Wizard of Oz,”
One of the greatest movies of all time…
The big theme was that the main characters all thought that they didn’t have what it takes to get what they wanted in life…
The Scarecrow thought he needed a brain…
The Tin Man thought he didn’t have a heart…
The Cowardly Lion was a scaredy-cat…
Dorothy felt lost and wanted to go home…
And it turned out they all already had everything they needed…
But they were looking around outside of themselves, while they should have been looking inside…
You could easily segue that message into anything really.
A motivational message.
A product promotion… anything. It just takes a little creativity.
But the power in this is immense.
You’re getting people to think about a movie that quite possibly they have fond memories of. This is important because it creates a strong emotional connection to information that may be somewhat boring and unemotional otherwise.
Makes sense, right?
Email Cheat Sheet Idea Seven:
Promote In Every Email
Word to the wise.
Never send an email without having a link to something for sale.
In case you didn’t get the memo, email lists are created to make you money. No need for the “timid” approach if you believe the products you promote are going to help people get a better result in their business, is there?
Besides, people DO NOT value FREE content as much as they do PAID content. If they have NO skin in the game, it’s more likely not going to be taken to heart and put into action.
Again, statistically you’ll find this to be true across the board.
However, there’s a right way and a wrong way to sell in every email.
Start your email out with a bang (as stated above). Make sure you don’t pitch anything in the beginning of the email. And always make your emails personal.
Simple, and yet, many just don’t get it.
You MUST start with the relationship in mind first – and then segue into your offer.
Having a nice day, are we?
Good for you.
I had a shotgun pointed at my head earlier, but other than that, it’s been pretty quiet to be honest.
Well, I was in the post office robbing the place sending out a parcel, when a couple of junkies dropped in for a good old robbery.
Seemed like nice lads only I couldn’t get a full glimpse of their mugs with the balaclavas and all that.
The shotguns didn’t help much either.
Anyway, I snapped into BOND MODE (as you do); did a couple of back-flips; a roundhouse or two – and before you know it, bad people are being taken out of the game.
The last part might have been a dream I had.
You know what though?
Makes me happy camper to be an online marketer, rather than having to rob post offices for a living.
See how easy that is to segue into your offer?
Doesn’t get easier.
That’s a true story by the way. I didn’t make it up, except for the last part, obviously.
I could then just talk about anything related to making money (which is almost all marketing products) and it wouldn’t be too salezy or sleazy.
Email Cheat Sheet Idea Eight:
Leverage Your Emails
How do we get it?
Here’s one simple way to cut down on content creation and still be well able to populate your blog, Flakebook fan pages and whatever other places you create content for.
Write it once; Distribute it everywhere.
Here’s how I suggest you approach it though.
I send emails on pretty much a regular basis.
Actually there are many good reasons why emailing regularly is a good idea, but the one I’m recommending to you today…
…is to take your email messages, and put them onto your blog. Put them onto your Flakebook page. Put them onto wherever you can bloody find.
Simple enough, right?
But do you see the beauty in it?
Think about it.
Email is at the top of your marketing pyramid, or at least it should be.
But maybe you find it difficult to write the messages.
Maybe it’s hard to come up with things to write about.
Heck, maybe you’re too fucking lazy and spend very little time writing messages at all.
Bad idea by the way.
Knowing that your emails are also populating your blog, and can be distributed across many different media sources. Wouldn’t it make sense to put a little more effort into your email writing?
Do it right and you’ll have no reason to create any more blog posts.
You’ll have no reason to create any more status updates, or whatever the young kids are calling it these days.
This is a great way to motivate yourself to writing more emails, which is a good thing my friend.
Now you’re killing at least two birds with the one stone.
Gives you more time to focus on “one” piece of content.
Gives you much more focus as you only have to “focus” on one topic to write about.
Gives you LEVERAGE because now you’re updating your content outlets on a regular basis.
Word to the wise though.
Now that you have a little more breathing space. Don’t fall into the trap of still only writing every 2 or 3 days.
Write email messages every damn day.
You have that freedom now.
It’s important you focus more on your email writing ahead of any other writing too.
You have no excuse not to now.
Get to it.
Not yet, speedy, finish reading this report first.
Email Cheat Sheet Idea Nine:
Add A Bonus To Your Promotions
Should I even have bothered putting this “idea” into this report?
I think so.
Problem I have most often is; I falsely assume everybody knows the simple things that are second nature to me. This simple hack is common sense to many, and yet, I see very few people actually using it.
The title says it all.
Add a bonus to every affiliate promotion you send out to your list.
Well… I don’t do this one myself as much as I know I should.
Because I don’t promote affiliate offers anymore. Why make someone else money when I can sell my own products?
Makes better sense to me.
You are creating your own products, right?
A bonus added to a sales page can increase conversions, yes? That’s why almost everybody does it.
Sometimes the bonus can be in more demand than the actual product. If it works on sales pages, it’s going to work on affiliate promotions too, right? Of course. It’s just common sense.
Now let’s be crystal here. You can’t just slap any bonus onto an affiliate product and expect to retire from the promotion. And… the bonus must be directly related to the offer. I shouldn’t need to highlight this, but not everyone is as smart as you and me.
Let’s assume you’re sending out a promotion to your email list for a spanking new squeeze page plugin, okay?
What bonus could you add to that particular promotion to increase conversions?
A report explaining how to use the plugin?
I bet the plugin creator already has that covered though.
What about a walkthrough video explaining how to create a high converting squeeze page? Inside the video you would talk about headlines, copy, what kind of offers work best etc etc etc.
Doesn’t seem like much, but it DOES add more value to the plugin, doesn’t it?
Yes… it… bloody… does, Declan, is the only right answer to that question.
You could go one step further and create a few stunning squeeze pages yourself with the plugin… and… walk people through the step by step process of creating similar kinds of page.
That’s a good little bonus, isn’t it?
Could take a little longer to create, but hey, this is your business we’re talking about.
Not to mention: You can repeat the promotion over and over again to your email list… and… even add in the promotion to your autoresponder sequence.
Create ONCE, benefit for a long time.
What if it’s not a plugin?
Maybe you’re promoting a simple eBook on list building.
How could we add a bonus to that type of product?
Easy enough when we sit down to think about it. Could be anything, really. You could create a 7 day autorespinder email sequence – and give that as a bonus.
You could search for a similar PLR product on the market.
Make it better – and add that as a bonus.
You could go through the product, find out what could make it better, and create a short report highlighting that fact.
Here’s another cool idea.
No one does this.
You could go over to Amazon.com and pick out 5 of the top selling HARDBACK business books you know people on your list will get tremendous benefit from. Should cost no more than $10.
You don’t buy them yet. Just pick out the top books and have them ready to go.
Now: With every promotion you make for an affiliate product that pays you a commission of more than $50.
You simply tell your subscribers that the first 10 people to buy through your affiliate link, you’ll send them a hardback copy of a book of their choice.
Give them the list of books to choose from… and… BOOM!! – INSTANT HIGH VALUE added to your promotion.
Sure, it costs you $10 plus shipping, but you get $40 profit with every sale made. This will work very well with “continuity” promotions where you get paid month after month.
Email Cheat Sheet Idea Ten:
Use Bullet Points In Emails
Every sales page you’ve ever read, has a whole list of bullet points.
Because they are bite sized chunks of benefits for the reader to digest. Some of the best copywriters in the world have pages and pages of bullet points inside their sales messages.
A prospect can be reading a lengthy sales letter, and just one bullet point on that sales letter can tip the buying decision in their mind, and get you the sale. And yet, I don’t see too many people using bullet points inside their emails. They should.
Try it out for yourself.
Write a brief introduction about your product, and then list 8 – 10 bullet points clearly stating the benefits your product can give them – and then segue you’re your pitch. Using this simple method in your emails can dramatically increase sales.
Just make sure your bullets highlight the most powerful benefits of what your product can give to them. Don’t do this in every email. Once a week is perfectly fine. Remember, people will buy a product because of just one simple bullet point. This is NOT theory by the way.
Gary Halbert was the master of bullets. Here are a few great teaser bullets he created for a product on helping people sell their homes…
- A dirty little secret many real estate brokers hope you never find out!
- Why adding improvements to your home can lower its value!
- Something crucial (and unusual) you must do to every closet in your house before you show it to a would-be buyer!
- How to make sure your buyer gets financing despite the credit crunch!
Notice how these bullets are benefit driven but also raise curiosity.
Do you think adopting this method into your email messages will get you better results?
Okay, now it’s time to get your action on.