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e-Mail and the “So What” Test June 14, 2010

Posted by Jack Macholl in Bank marketing, Communications, e-mail marketing, Marketing.
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Years ago while just starting out in the marketing field my account executive from the ad agency mentioned that any copy must pass the “so what test” in order to capture attention and compel the reader to carry on. That phrase stuck and while advising a client on an e-mail assignment, this wisdom once again drifted through my mind.

As most people review their in-box they scan the “regarding or subject” lines-the first cut. Then the moment of truth, the click and a 6-7 second glance to address the question “what is in this for me?”

Without a doubt your brand name and logotype must be evident, with layout and template design being clear and inviting. But that’s really just the aesthetics content must always be relevant and engaging. If it’s rehashed or worn out tips that look and feel “generic” then it’s likely the delete key or worse yet the opt-out link will be clicked and a subscriber is lost.

Is your copy compelling? Does it really address what’s in it for the reader or is your e-mail loaded with fluff in a cramped, non-inviting format?  Do you provide links to your web site or other helpful sources that prospects and clients can learn from?  Is your e-news interesting enough that people are inclined to hit the forward key and send along to their valued contact network?

Improving your e-mail content:

  • Who is your audience?- Taking time to define the demographic/psychographic profiles helps you create meaningful content messages to a busy MD running a practice will be worlds apart from articles of interest to a stay-at-home mom.
  • Tone or personality– no matter how small or large your business is, a “persona” should shine through in your written communications. This tone or persona should be consistent with the content on your web site, blog and collateral materials.
  • No novelsgood content isn’t weighed given the treadmill pace of life you must capture reader attention, make the point and provide links if they wish to read in-depth.
  • Be generous links can go to other helpful sites or blogs that can add-value to the life of your prospect or client. By serving as a source of information you display confidence and create good will-that can often lead to new business or potential referrals when people feel good about your helpful nature.

 Planning and careful thought is imperative to a successful e-mail or e-newsletter communication strategy. After all, your content or subject matter is really why people signed-on in the first place. By making content valuable you position yourself as an expert, add-value and are rewarded with new prospects (subscribers) that return for more thoughts and in the end become users of what you offer.

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