“The tone of good web writing grows out of email. It’s more direct, personal, colloquial, urgent, witty, efficient. It doesn’t waste your time. It reflects that engagement, responsiveness, and haste of web surfers, as opposed to the more general passivity of print readers.” — Jacob Weisberg
Even within a single organization there can be a lot of different opinions over how email marketing should be handled. Should it be purely promotional? Should it be informative? How entertaining should it be?
The thing is, these companies know there is a potential gold mine in their subscriber lists, but many of them haven’t figured out how to make the most of the opportunity.
Basically, there are three approaches to writing messages for email. And if you study the marketing emails you receive in your inbox every day, you’ll find they probably fall within one of following three categories:
- Purely promotional
- Informative and promotional
- Entertaining and promotional
Notice that “promotional” is a component of each one. Even companies that use email to share information or provide entertainment still almost always send out promotional emails as well.
Let’s take a look at each one in more detail…
1. Purely Promotional
I’m sure you see this type of email every day. They are the email equivalent of magazine ads. You get a short email telling you about a great product or service, often with a special offer included.
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