Email Marketing – 5 Formulas to Entice Your Readers to Open Your Emails

Email marketing is a fabulous way to market your products and services to your readers and make sales—if they bother to open your emails to read them! In the world of marketing communications, your first impression — your headline — can lead to either marketing success or failure.

The only way headlines will work is if they appeal to your readers’ interests. The best headlines are designed to:

1. Grab your readers’ attention
2. Get your readers to read the rest of your message
3. Convey your main selling points or information
4. Lead your customers to want your solution so they make a purchase

Remember, when creating headlines, “start with the end in mind.”

Many headline formulas work well. Here are my five favorites I use repeatedly, that have resulted in an average 50% open rate for my e-newsletter and sales promotions:

1. The Question

“Do You Hate Your Job? Discover Seven Secrets For Escaping Corporate Slavery!”

A question headline automatically gets your readers involved in your message, because they begin to answer the question in their minds. It also generates curiosity, because people want to seek the answer to the question, and not feel that they are “missing” out on some important information.

The question headline entices people to read further into your letter, ad, website copy, or open your e-newsletter to find out the answer or solution you can provide to the question.

2. The How-To

“How to Lose 20 Pounds in 30 Days.”

“How-to” headlines work very because people love information, steps, and checklists that show them how to do something. Think of the benefits your products and /services offer, and then try creating some “how to” headlines.

It’s also a great idea to include numbers in your headlines, because numbers make the message more tangible, and measurable.

One More Simple Tip: Using the words “easy” or “simple” in your headlines gives people the sense that what ever you are teaching them “how-to do” is not going to be a lot of work, and therefore they’ll read further (easy and simple wins over complicated and time-consuming every time).

3. Headline “Power Words” & “Phrases”

Weave these small, but mighty words and phrases into your headlines for added Oomph!

• Love
• Discover…
• Do You…
• How To…
• How Much…
• How Would…
• Yes
• Guarantee
• Imagine…
• Proven
• New
• Immediate, instant, now
• You
• Results
• Free

4. The Testimonial

“Bonita Richter’s Coaching Is Pure Magic—My Sales Have Increased 50% in 3 Months!”

Why not get social proof working for you, and let your clients do the selling? Other peoples’ recommendations can go a long way in convincing others to use your services.

Social proof means that we tend to view the behavior of others as an indicator of what we should do in a particular situation. If someone else says, something must be good or noteworthy, than it must be so.

If other people have received great results by working with you, or using your products/services, then other people will tend to want to share in the success, too.

Tip: To appear credible, always include your clients’ full names and the cities they live in.

5. The Command

“Boost Your Sales Today!”

Turn your most important benefit into a commanding headline, such as “Look 10 Years Younger Instantly!” and “Get 10 New Clients This Month.”

Including a number into your headline is another good tactic. Readers are attracted to odd numbers (especially 5, 7, and 9), as opposed to even numbers.

Once your readers know you have something they’re interested in, they’ll take the time to read your entire article, brochure, letter, ad, e-newsletter, or Web page.

By putting some TLC into creating your email headlines, you’ll boost your email open rates, opt-ins, and make more sales!

What words in headlines trigger the highest emotional response in you?  Make a comment and tell our readers!

4 Responses to Email Marketing – 5 Formulas to Entice Your Readers to Open Your Emails

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Randy Kemp, Pat Hough, Eduardo Braga, Paloma Miranda, Courtney Wiley and others. Courtney Wiley said: RT @randylewiskemp: Email Marketing – 5 Formulas to Entice Your Readers to Open Your Emails http://bit.ly/coFATM [...]

  2. Thanks, Randy, and others, for Tweeting this blog entry! I am happy your found the information useful :)

  3. Hi Bonita, This is the first issue of Profit Zine that I have received and am looking forward to future issues. A technique that I like to use in email subject lines and headlines is to start with a verb such as promote, deliver, eliminate, transform. etc. Verbs suggest “action” and can prompt readers to respond.

  4. Bonita says:

    Hi Denise,

    I am glad you enjoyed your first issue of ProfitZine! Thank you for your comment. You have a GREAT idea with putting a verb at the beginning of the headline. Promoting action is what we’re after…and I like your idea! I am going to try this on my next headline :) I love getting comments from readers, there is so much to learn from everyone.