This article, "10 Simple Edits That'll Instantly Improve Any Sales Email" is excellent! Click here for the source and original article.
1) Open with questions that get the reader to say “yes.” The idea is that the longer you can get the reader to say “yes” to your honest, accurate statements, the more likely they are to keep saying “yes” and, ultimately, harmonize with your message. Why? Because they’ll feel like you understand them; like you know exactly what they’re going through.
2) Double tap the “Enter” button every 1-3 sentences. As you know, hitting “Enter” or “Return” twice leaves a space between paragraphs. But just because that space is void of words, does not mean it doesn’t serve a purpose. White space also makes copy appear less intimidating and more readable. It structures the message in a polished, elegant frame that invites readers to dive in.
3) Bold your key benefits. Bolding the benefits will quickly point readers to the information you absolutely need them to know. In fact, in-text formatting of any kind -- italicizing, underlining, capitalizing, back-linking -- will help you capture and maintain a reader’s attention.
4) Isolate important information using bullet points.
- Organize your text, making it more scannable and digestible.
- Highlight your key points and other important bits of information.
- Draw the most attention after your headline and subheads, making them an ideal vessel for benefits.
5) Start sentences with “Imagine,” “Remember,” or “Picture this …” These words are triggers. They let readers know you’re about to tell them a story, jog their memory, or paint them a picture. People love that stuff. Always have. It signals to you that you're about to experience something you enjoy. It yields an anticipatory sensation. It creates suspense. And that’ll keep you engaged in just about any situation, whether you’re watching TV or reading an email.
6) Incorporate the word “because” as often as possible. “Because” is another trigger word. It lets people know they’re about to hear a justification -- a reason why -- which, according to renowned researcher and author, Dr. Robert Cialdini, is great at getting people to nod their heads: "A well-known principle of human behavior says that when we ask someone to do us a favor we will be more successful if we provide a reason. People simply like to have reasons for what they do," writes Cialdini in his bestselling book, Influence.
7) Convert sentences to active voice. Nothing kills writing quite like the overuse of passive voice. A simple way to combat this? Convert sentences to active voice. Active voice means the subject of each sentence is doing the action rather than receiving it. The latter would be passive voice. For example:
- Active: Usain Bolt broke the world record.
- Passive: The world record was broken by Usain Bolt.
8) Rewrite everything in the second person. Second person is the most engaging narrative mode because it’s the most personal. Pronouns like “you,” “your,” and “yours” will help the reader see themselves in your copy and, consequently, in the story your product or service is trying to tell. Great writing speaks to readers on an intimate level. It connects with them, which is incredibly difficult to do. But writing in the second person makes it easier.
9) Count your adverbs and then cut that number in half. If you want your writing to grab people by the collar, replace that mediocre adverb-verb combo with a single punchy, potent verb. For example, instead of writing “she’s very mad” you could write “she’s irate.” Or instead of writing “adverbs are very, very good at weakening your writing” you can write “adverbs sabotage compelling sentences.”
10) Amend your call-to-action to be a call-to-value. Before you send your email, you should double-check your "call-to-action" (you know, the essential end-piece that tells your reader what to do next). Make sure it’s clear and concise, bold and visible, urgent and compelling. Most importantly, make sure it communicates benefits (i.e., the value that awaits those who do what you’re asking).
For example, if you’re a travel agent, don’t let your copy read “Call now for a free quote” or something equally typical and uninspiring. Instead, drive them to take action with a sneak peak: “Call now and let the anticipation begin” or “Click today and be gone tomorrow.”
Let your prospects see themselves in the action and they’ll be more likely to take it.
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