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The Boring Email Trap

Send clients emails they want to read.

The content of the emails to your clients can make or break a relationship. 

How often do you get an email containing information you need to know, but is boring, ugly and tedious? 

These are communications that need to engage and hold your clients - both current and prospective. 

What is a Transactional Email?

This definition of transaction email by Sendgrid is spot on. It's worth investigating these if you email clients as research shows that they are the most-read of all emails sent to consumers:

Transactional email is a type of email sent to facilitate an agreed-upon transaction between the sender and the recipient. Transactional emails typically contain information a recipient wants or needs and consequently have very high open rates. Common transactional email use cases include, account creation emails, password resets, purchase receipts, account notifications, and social media updates like friend and follower notifications. - Sendgrid, What is Transactional Email?

Customer Journey Emails

There are several types of emails clients receive on their customer journey with you. At the most basic level there could be:

  • Subscription cancellation notice
  • Tax Invoice
  • Newsletter or blog welcome/helpful information/notification of changes client makes
  • Subscription or account details
  • Registration confirmation

A simple example of this is PayPal who send a series of email communications throughout your customer journey with them:

  • Welcome to PayPal/Activate
  • Start shopping with PayPal
  • Bank account details confirmed
  • Make your everyday purchases info
  • Check your statement

How To Improve Your Email Content

If you despair at the amount of crap you receive, the least you can do for your clients is ensure the mail they have to receive from you is interesting, personable and even entertaining. Vinomofo has a suitably chatty and irreverent voice, while Freelancer is more formal, yet still appealing and easy on the eye.

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Don't Lose Your Humanity

Keep in mind a single customer; one you know. This helps inform your content, avoiding emails that have a cold, generic voice as if written for an anonymous group of 500.  

Be Succinct

Say what you need to say and no more. I write freely, then go back and remove anything superfluous or flowery. Then I do it again.

Second Eyes

Before you send your email have someone else have a look at it for you. Everyone makes mistakes that they don't pick up in their own writing (I can almost guarantee you'll find at least one in this post as I didn't take my own good advice on a second pair of eyes). 

I Feel Pretty

Not in your email, you don't. You might love the swirling floral background in spring hues, however it might cause your client to hit delete without reading the clever, succinct and useful content of your email. Keep it looking clean and don't be tempted to use a 'fun' font. Campaign Monitor has some great advice on which fonts work best.

Savvy People Use Clever People

I'm no designer and the only reason this post is formatted this way is because I do what I'm told by Julian Matthews at Story. If you only want to create an email header, consider using the clever people at Canva as your guide. They have templates that look like this:

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Once you swap out fonts, colours and photos it can transform into something that's just yours. They have a good eye for space and perspective, so the trick is to not mess with the template too much. Being savvy means knowing your limitations and seeking out others to fill those gaps.

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This is a very quick (just now, actually) mock up I did as an example of what it looked like before and how it is now.

Great Advice From Others

I've only scratched the surface here. Fortunately, there are those far more qualified than me to help guide you:

Hubspot has a blog which is a fountain of excellent information.

Forbes offers great detail about the process in this email advice.

ThoughtCo has some rules that apply to all your emails. Don't use exclamation marks in any professional email is a good rule of thumb.

Entrepreneur tells us why emails are still a really good idea in your business communications.

Kissmetrics has a guide on including videos in your emails.

Still Reading?

Okay, if you're this into email marketing you should take a look at this.

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A good writer knows how to ‘hear’ the voice of the client and write in that voice. At Savvy Content there are no written templates of text – every client gets fresh, original, intelligent content that tells their own particular story in a way that will immediately appeal to the intended audience.

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