VR Retention Marketing Specialist, Amber Ricchetti, recently attended a DMA copywriting seminar in NYC. She came back with a ton of great insight, ideas and tips on how to improve ouremail and online copy. They’re too good to be kept secret, so I wanted to pass them along to you, too.
Here are Amber’s top 13 picks from the seminar to help you instantly improve your email copy:
- Ask the 4 Key Questions: Before you begin to write, ask yourself these four key questions.
- What am I selling (at emotional level)?
- To whom am I selling?
- Why am I selling this now (will it make sense to the customer)?
- What do I want my reader to do (Calls to Action)?
- Consider Your Font Style: Sans-serif fonts, such as Arial, Verdana and Helvetica, are easier to read online than serif. If people find it difficult to read your copy, they won’t!
- Read Your Copy Out Loud: This will help you hear what your readers hear.
- Cut the Clutter: William Zinsser wrote that “clutter is the disease of American writing.” The quickest way to improve your copy is by removing any unnecessary words such as “that”or “to.”
- Use the Rhythm of 3: List your examples in groups of three. The Rhythm gives a great cadence to your copy.
- Use Bucket Brigade Words: Bucket brigade words help you move your copy forward. They include remember, and, but, consider, however, for example..and more!
- Vary Sentence Length: It is important to vary your sentence length to hold your reader’s attention. And don’t be afraid to use sentence fragments – this isn’t your college English class!
- Differentiate Between Features vs. Benefits: Features are what the product has. Benefits are what it will provide the customers. The customer will always ask, “What’s in it for me?” Be sure you tell them.
- Write In the Second Person: Focus on one person (you/your) rather than a group (our customers). This makes your reader feel special and highlights how the product can benefit them.
- Write Less Copy: People read 25% slower online than offline, so you need to write less copy so they will read it.
- Don’t Hide Your Key Points: Keep your most important points at the beginning of paragraphs, bullets and lists.
- Keep Paragraphs Short: Make sure your paragraphs are no more than 3 lines long. Otherwise you might lose your reader’s attention.
- Remember Odd vs. Even: Odd numbers are easier to remember than even, so use an odd number whenever possible.