How to write effective emails and messages for Web3 users
Continuing our guide on email marketing, I wanted to cover some of the finer points of writing emails that actually generate results.
You can have a well-defined welcome sequence or sales series and still manage to get zero results simply because your emails are dull and poorly written.
While I can't help you actually write the emails (unless you book me for some work here), what I can do is offer some tips and tricks to help you write more effective emails for your Web3 audience.
Before we get into it, you might be wondering "why bother with email in Web3?". Well, I'll refer you to this article we wrote on the basics of email marketing in the space so you know why this is important.
If you'd prefer a snappy little soundbite, then check out the below statistic.
Got it? Cool. Let's go.
How to write an effective email
I'll offer as much insight and learnings from my ~10 years of writing email as I can here. However, I can only get so specific as your audience, offer, and method of promotion is unique.
Generally speaking, you can separate a good email into the below sections. And you should get good results if you follow the advice.
Write compelling subject lines
To reuse a very tired saying in the copywriting world from David Ogilvy, when you've written your headline you've spent 80c of your dollar.
It's a fancy way of saying out of every 5 people who see a headline, only 1 of them reads the content.
This tracks with the general stats on email open rates.
Most brands can expect an open rate of between 20-30%.
Which means 70-80% of your subscribers don't even read your email messages.
A good subject line can help more people open your message and read what you have to send them. While not an exhaustive list, here's a couple of types of headlines that should get your Web3 users to open and read what you're sending.
The open loop
People are curious.
We hate it when someone hints at something but doesn't give us the entire story. You'll have seen this work to great effect with any sort of clickbait headlines.
You basically give just enough information to pique interest, but not enough to fully satisfy the reader. They have to open the email and read to finish the thought.
- Ethereum is no longer the chain of choice for dApp developers...
- Are you missing out on these new alt-coins?
- What we found by analysing 21 million blockchain transactions
In each case you hint at something interesting, but you don't give the user the actual answer. They're always left asking themselves what the answer might be.
And the only way they can close this loop, is to open the email and read it.
I use these a lot in sales email sequences around the close of the series.
Basically, an urgency-focused subject line leads with how little time or quantity of something is left. You send it to people who haven't yet taken the action you'd like them to.
The limited time frame or quantity gets those who are planning to act, but haven't yet, to pull their finger out.
- Ending soon! Don't miss out on [THING]
- Only 24 hours left to [GET BENEFIT]
- We're down to our last 100 [THINGS] - Don't miss out!
This is similar to the open loop. It requires the user to open the email to get the answer.
I like to use an approach I call "specifically vague" here. I use the user's name to make it specific to them, but the question is a little vague so they have to open the email to learn more.
- Hey [NAME], would love your opinion on this new feature
- Hi [NAME], have you heard about this yet?
How to are great for educational emails. they're straight to the point and lead with the benefit.
There's not much to be said about them as they're pretty simple. They're great for onboarding sequences and you can lead with something as simple as...
- How to [ACHIEVE PRIMARY GOAL]
- How to [SET UP KEY FEATURE]
- How to [AVOID PAIN]
These are all great options for high-engagement subject lines.
But you can take them a step further with your preview text.
Build interest with your preview text
The preview text comes directly under the subject line in your user's inboxes. It's that little line of text that explains more about the email.
If you don't specifically add anything to the preview text area in your email service provider, it will just show the first line of the email itself.
It's a great opportunity to further build on the subject line.
There's no perfect preview text for every email. Really you've got to think about what you might be able to do to further build intrigue and curiosity about the content of the email itself and then add it in to the preview text.
Just make sure you actually put something as the auto-populated preview text is never exciting.
Use well-known formulae
When it comes to the body of your email, don't just sit down and expect to start writing something amazing.
Make it easy on yourself. Use a tried and tested copywriting formula.
The easiest and most flexible to apply is the AIDA formula.
If you're not aware, AIDA stands for...
Here's a little guide on what you could do for each stage of AIDA.
Lead with a big claim or outline the most common pain point you know your audience is feeling.
Make them feel the pain though. Show don't tell. Don't say "are you tired of X". Paint a picture and get them to picture the scene. And make that scene something they want to achieve or want to rid themselves of.
Build on your opening and create some detail around the claim you've made.
Outline some of the details and features of what you're talking about. I like to throw in a few stats here to add some believability and make the whole thing feel more interesting to the reader.
People generally want to achieve their goal faster, easier, or cheaper than the method they're currently using.
Outline how you help them achieve this and they're going to want what you offer.
Simply tell them what to do next.
That could be as simple as a "click here to learn more".
Speaking of action.
Always add a CTA
Every email you send should have some form of CTA in there.
It can be as simple as a "read this on the site", or with a bigger action like "buy now".
You should always have some form of CTA that's tied to a key growth goal in every email.
If you're worried about annoying your users, don't. If the information and approach in your emails is entertaining and educational, they won't care that you make a small ask at the end.
Optimise for mobile
This is a simple one.
A lot of people read email on their mobile device.
So, when you're designing your emails, make sure that they look good on mobile. Generally speaking, if you create an email that looks great on mobile, it'll also look good on desktop.
Mobile first in this case.
How to track and optimise your emails
A lot of people will track their email effectiveness based on metrics like open rate and CTR.
This is great if you're running a newsletter with some form of sponsorship. But if you're looking at growing your business, you need to focus on the end goal.
Track for revenue / end goals
Call me a mercenary if you want, but I want to optimise for revenue.
If I'm not making money I can't afford to continue growing the company and helping more people. Open rates are nice, but I can't pay my bills with them.
You've got to focus on optimising for the key metrics that are impacting your brands growth.
Make sure you're using a decent analytics tool to track how email users interact beyond the email itself. Track their journey through to that key metric and optimise for the action that helps your business.
And then, optimise your send cadence, messaging, and everything else to make sure that you're increasing that key metric.
Depending on the kind of Web3 business you own, that could be anything including...
- Buying an NFT
- Listing on your platform
- Referring a friend
- Making their first or next trade
This might mean you end up with lower opens or clicks. But if you make more sales, then you're doing OK.
Work back to find the bottlenecks
Assuming things like deliverability aren't an issue and you're not hitting your goals, you're going to need to make changes.
Rather than try to optimise at the top of this sequence with something like the subject line (unless opens are way below industry average), I recommend working backwards through the customer journey.
I'd look at things in this order...
- Sale / mint page
- Email CTA
- Email content
- Subject line / preview text
Between each I would look at key stats like...
- Number of people who took the preceding action
- What action they did take / didn't take at this stage
I'll find out the percentage drops at each stage to help me understand where the biggest drop off in engagement is.
I then have a place to start (you might work all the way back to the subject line with this method, but you'll have removed the potential of it being any other element).
I'll analyse that section and look at a few ways we could improve it before running them as tests.
Segment your best users
As time goes by you'll note that a handful of your email subscribers are driving the majority of sales and engagement.
Make sure you keep a segment of these separate from the other subscribers.
When you're launching new products, features, or looking for beta testers or promoters, these are the people you should go to first.
Clean your list frequently
And finally, keep your list clean.
I recommend cleaning it of unengaged people every 3 months or so.
Because if you're sending emails that don't get engaged with not only does it drive down the overall health of your sender reputation, but it's pretty pointless.
Why send emails to people who haven't opened one in months?
not to mention you're paying your ESP for these people and they're not even reading your messages.
That's it for this brief but actionable guide on writing better emails for your Web3 project.
If you want any more help, be sure to reach out to me here or check out our list of the best ESPs for Web3 brands.
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