If you are looking to make content sound more human, brand voice is a good place to start. Consider the following basic rules of creating engaging email content:
- Be clear and use plain English.
- Steer clear of digital marketing jargon.
- Be helpful. Demonstrate to your audience the manner in which you can help them as well as add value to their lives.
- Keep the focus on them and be memorable.
- Be concise.
- Get your point across in a limited amount of words.
- Be consistent.
- Use one voice and one tone across all channels.
Creating engaging email content
Here are a couple of principles to ensure that your email content gets the attention it deserves:
Know your audience
A lot of writers put pen to paper before they have a good idea about who it is that they’re trying to reach. Before drafting content for your emails, ask yourself the following questions:
- Who is my primary target audience?
- Who is my secondary audience that can influence as well as inform the primary audience?
Follow the “inverted pyramid” model
In writing, this technique of beginning with your conclusion is called the ‘Inverted Pyramid Style’. Sometimes referred to as Front-Loading, this means that you should put your most important information first when writing for emails. By front-loading your content, it is more likely that you will keep your readers reading the email.
Write short and simple sentences
The short attention span of the reader today demands sentences of 35 words or less. Focus on making use of nouns as well as verbs. Utilise adverbs as well as adjectives sparingly. Don’t make use of words such as “equanimity” or “obfuscate” when words such as “calm” or “confuse” will do.
Stick to the active voice
Make use of active as opposed to than passive verbs. Specify the subject of the sentence. For example, as opposed to writing “A coffee was ordered,” write “The man ordered a coffee.” As opposed to saying “Products can be ordered on our website,” say “You can order products on our website.” The active voice assists with creating succinct, reader-friendly sentences. It’s also more direct. If you speak directly to the audience (“You can do it”) this is more engaging as opposed to saying “It can be done”.
Cut the jargon
The Internet is universal and is not just for technical experts. This means that you need to make sure that information is understandable for the educated nonspecialist. Spell out acronyms when they are first mentioned. Avoid insider language and explain complex or niche terms. Give hyperlinks to other articles where readers can get more background information on a specific topic.
Make text scannable
As well as to putting the most critical information up top, ensure that the text is easy to skim. Most email readers will scan the email to find the relevant piece of information which they’re looking for. If they don’t find without any effort, they’ll move on.
Break up your text
Instead of having text-heavy paragraphs, make use of bulleted or numerical lists. As opposed to one long page of text, organise content into labelled tabs.
Always make sure that you include “white space.” This term refers to the empty space which surrounds paragraphs, images as well as other elements on your email. Although it may appear as if this is just wasted space, it’s really a web designer’s best friend. Comfortable amounts of white space surrounding text makes it more legible as well as more enjoyable to read. It’s also critical to divide content into sections with descriptive sub-headings.
Want to learn more about the art of writing emails in addition to writing content for the web? If so, then our digital copywriting and content course is definitely something that you need to consider doing. For more information on this course or any of our other Digital Marketing courses, please follow this link.
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