Email Content Cliches: 

Stop Doing What
Everyone Else is Doing
@EmailSnarketing
Kristin Bond
• My job involves training a lot of people on email marketing in
a specific ESP, and optimizi...
For my blog, I subscribed to
a lot of emails. And I saw a
few very common themes…
@EmailSnarketing
Welcome Emails
the first to know
you’re the first to know
be the first to know
you’re the first to know
@EmailSnarketing
Welcome Emails
• Are your email subscribers really the first to know?
• …ALL of them?
@EmailSnarketing
Why It’s Bad
• It’s not even true.
• Almost every single brand does it.
• Who cares? What’s the benefit of...
@EmailSnarketing
Do this instead
• Thank them for subscribing.
• Introduce your brand.
• Give them something of value, whe...
@EmailSnarketing
~Exclusive~ offers
@EmailSnarketing
Why it’s bad
• If your list or offer is exclusive, you will probably have terrible ROI.
• You know that t...
@EmailSnarketing
Do this instead
• Stop calling things exclusive.
• Get a thesaurus.
• Think about what’s compelling about...
@EmailSnarketing
And then there’s
“Exclusive’s” BFF…
@EmailSnarketing
Just for you
• I received an email about an upcoming
conference that has more than 120,000
attendees.
• T...
@EmailSnarketing
Why it’s bad
• Again, it’s usually not true.
• Your subscribers aren’t stupid. Don’t insult their intelli...
@EmailSnarketing
Do this instead
• With personalization - show, don’t tell.
• Don’t fake personalization.
• Instead of bla...
Holidays
@EmailSnarketing
April Fools’ Day
Subject Line: 

Thanks For Your Order!
A furniture store
@EmailSnarketing
Why It’s Bad
• This one made a lot of people mad, especially if they had ever
experienced identity theft....
@EmailSnarketing
Do this instead
• Your April Fool’s marketing email should be a joke, not a prank.
• Ideal reaction: You ...
@EmailSnarketing
UberNYC Lions
• This was similar to other emails Uber had
sent, like Uber Kittens, so it had that “Are
th...
@EmailSnarketing
Warby Parker’s “Warby Barker”
• This campaign was incredibly detailed:
It had a landing page with an FAQ
...
@EmailSnarketing
Boden’s Dress Recall
• This email from Johnnie Boden, a British clothing
retailer, recalled a dress with ...
Sending an April Fool’s email with
“NO JOKE!”
Seriously.
What’s worse than sending an
April Fool’s email with a bad joke?
@EmailSnarketing
Why It’s Bad
• You’re right - it’s not a joke. Jokes are funny.
• This is not funny.
• It’s not clever.
•...
@EmailSnarketing
Do this instead
• Send something truly clever and original.
• Or just send a normal email. Most people do...
@EmailSnarketing
Like these.
@EmailSnarketing
Fake Holidays
WHAT?!
NO!!!
I DID NOT OPT IN TO THIS AS A MARKETER.
Uh, ok…
“ ”
OK NOPE NOPENOPE
XX X
We can’t seem to agree on
consistent, real timing for
these fake holidays.
@EmailSnarketing
Spring Black Friday
The blue
hardware store
The blue
hardware store
The orange
hardware store
@EmailSnarketing
Why It’s Bad
• The real versions of these “holidays” are bad enough.
• These are confusing at best.
• Cus...
@EmailSnarketing
Do this instead
• Just don’t. Don’t do this. Send emails about
literally anything else.
And while we’re on the
subject of holidays that
don’t make sense…
@EmailSnarketing
Cyber Monday
"The name Cyber Monday grew out of the
observation that millions of otherwise productive
wor...
@EmailSnarketing
Not exactly.
• At the time, the Monday after Thanksgiving was
nowhere NEAR the highest online sales day -...
And now we send Cyber Monday
emails as if we didn’t all have
devices with high speed internet in
our hands at all times.
@EmailSnarketing
The other problem with Cyber
Monday… it’s not just a day.
@EmailSnarketing
Do this instead

#StopCyberMonday
• If we must do it - let’s pick ONE day, okay? Stop “extending” these
f...
@EmailSnarketing
Award Show Emails
@EmailSnarketing
Award Shows
I received all of these in the span of a few hours on Oscar Night.
@EmailSnarketing
Why It’s Bad
• This is lazy marketing.
• These brands are just sending emails with the first subject
line ...
@EmailSnarketing
• With award shows, and ANY other special
occasion: find something that makes
sense for your brand, like F...
@EmailSnarketing
Kristin’s Final Thoughts
@EmailSnarketing
• Brainstorm the first, most obvious things that come to mind with any given
occasion. Throw out that list...
Do something interesting.
Like these brands…
@EmailSnarketing
BarkBox
• Sends newsletters with
excellent, very shareable dog
content
• Promotion of their actual
produc...
@EmailSnarketing
Bonobos
• From Name: A Dress Shirt From Bonobos
• Subject: I’d like to add you to my professional
network...
@EmailSnarketing
Poppin
• Beautiful photography
that tells a story with
color and showcases
what’s special about their
pro...
@EmailSnarketing
DonorsChoose
• Subject Line: Treat Ms. Bond's
classroom
• My last name is Bond, so of
course I opened thi...
@EmailSnarketing
These brands all found a way to stand
out by doing something completely
different, that made sense for th...
@EmailSnarketing
Now go re-write your welcome email.
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Email Content Cliches: Stop Doing What Everyone Else is Doing

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Does your welcome email contain the phrase "You'll be the first to know..."? Is your email list "Exclusive?" Are your April Fool's Day sales "No joke!"? Kristin Bond of Email Snarketing will discuss common messaging that appears over and over across many different brands, why it's all terrible, and how to make sure your emails are original.

Publicada em: Marketing
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Email Content Cliches: Stop Doing What Everyone Else is Doing

  1. 1. Email Content Cliches: 
 Stop Doing What Everyone Else is Doing
  2. 2. @EmailSnarketing Kristin Bond • My job involves training a lot of people on email marketing in a specific ESP, and optimizing marketing emails for Girl Scouts at the national level. (And no, I can’t get you free cookies. Buy them from a Girl Scout next January.) • My other job involves teaching the basics of email marketing to people who want to start their own companies. • My non-job job involves writing a blog that mocks bad email marketing, and tweeting about life as an email marketer. Sr. Email Marketing Manager, 
 Girl Scouts of the USA
  3. 3. For my blog, I subscribed to a lot of emails. And I saw a few very common themes…
  4. 4. @EmailSnarketing Welcome Emails the first to know you’re the first to know be the first to know you’re the first to know
  5. 5. @EmailSnarketing Welcome Emails • Are your email subscribers really the first to know? • …ALL of them?
  6. 6. @EmailSnarketing Why It’s Bad • It’s not even true. • Almost every single brand does it. • Who cares? What’s the benefit of being “first to know” for subscribers? • Why are we even welcoming people to receive advertisements from us in the first place?
  7. 7. @EmailSnarketing Do this instead • Thank them for subscribing. • Introduce your brand. • Give them something of value, whether it’s a discount or great content (or both!). • Ask new subscribers to update their preferences or sign up to follow you on social. • Ditch the word “Welcome” completely. • Ask them to update preferences
  8. 8. @EmailSnarketing ~Exclusive~ offers
  9. 9. @EmailSnarketing Why it’s bad • If your list or offer is exclusive, you will probably have terrible ROI. • You know that thing where you see a word too many times and it begins to lose meaning? That’s what’s happening with “Exclusive.” • Why should anyone care that other people may or may not be getting this deal?
  10. 10. @EmailSnarketing Do this instead • Stop calling things exclusive. • Get a thesaurus. • Think about what’s compelling about your offer, and use that to describe it.
  11. 11. @EmailSnarketing And then there’s “Exclusive’s” BFF…
  12. 12. @EmailSnarketing Just for you • I received an email about an upcoming conference that has more than 120,000 attendees. • The email had information about speakers and sessions, and a countdown - the content was actually pretty good. • But the subject line was not.
 Subject: “Kristin— [Conference] News Just for You!” • This news was NOT just for me. It was for 119,999 other people too. A conference A conference logo A conference A conference conference A company
  13. 13. @EmailSnarketing Why it’s bad • Again, it’s usually not true. • Your subscribers aren’t stupid. Don’t insult their intelligence. • Who cares? For something like this, as an attendee, I would want all the other people to know what’s going on.
  14. 14. @EmailSnarketing Do this instead • With personalization - show, don’t tell. • Don’t fake personalization. • Instead of blatantly saying how unique the content is, just… have unique content that is interesting and relevant to the subscriber. Let them think you can read their minds. • If you’re basing recommendations on previous purchases or behavior - it’s okay to be upfront about it. People prefer honesty over creepiness.
  15. 15. Holidays
  16. 16. @EmailSnarketing April Fools’ Day Subject Line: 
 Thanks For Your Order! A furniture store
  17. 17. @EmailSnarketing Why It’s Bad • This one made a lot of people mad, especially if they had ever experienced identity theft. • It went viral. Not in a good way. • This one wasn’t even funny. It was cheesy.
  18. 18. @EmailSnarketing Do this instead • Your April Fool’s marketing email should be a joke, not a prank. • Ideal reaction: You want to make people do a double take, maybe fool them for a moment, but not upset them. • Be funny and clever. • Do something similar enough to something that your brand would normally do that it throws people off, but make it very clear that it’s not real. • Involve cute animals in some way. It just works.
  19. 19. @EmailSnarketing UberNYC Lions • This was similar to other emails Uber had sent, like Uber Kittens, so it had that “Are they serious?!?” moment, but it was obviously not a real thing. • They had a social good element where they donated money to National Geographic’s Big Cats Initiative. They sent another email later in the day talking about the initiative and showing ways for people to donate.
  20. 20. @EmailSnarketing Warby Parker’s “Warby Barker” • This campaign was incredibly detailed: It had a landing page with an FAQ about dog prescriptions and a video with the co-founders explaining the collection of dog glasses. • It had the same look and feel as the brand’s other emails and website at the time, right down to the dog head turns on the product pages. • It was cute, and funny.
  21. 21. @EmailSnarketing Boden’s Dress Recall • This email from Johnnie Boden, a British clothing retailer, recalled a dress with a beach print that had tiny people on it because, upon closer inspection, there were naked people on the dress. • The email was written as an apology, and had instructions for returning it for a refund. If people clicked on the link for more info, they were let in on the joke. • It featured a product that people could actually buy, and people bought it. I bought the skirt in this print because of this email. 
  22. 22. Sending an April Fool’s email with “NO JOKE!” Seriously. What’s worse than sending an April Fool’s email with a bad joke?
  23. 23. @EmailSnarketing Why It’s Bad • You’re right - it’s not a joke. Jokes are funny. • This is not funny. • It’s not clever. • It’s boring. Stop it.
  24. 24. @EmailSnarketing Do this instead • Send something truly clever and original. • Or just send a normal email. Most people don’t celebrate or recognize April Fool’s Day anyway. • Or… don’t send an email at all. You don’t have to send an email every day. It’s okay. You deserve a break. You have enough other holidays to worry about.
  25. 25. @EmailSnarketing Like these.
  26. 26. @EmailSnarketing Fake Holidays WHAT?! NO!!! I DID NOT OPT IN TO THIS AS A MARKETER. Uh, ok… “ ” OK NOPE NOPENOPE XX X
  27. 27. We can’t seem to agree on consistent, real timing for these fake holidays.
  28. 28. @EmailSnarketing Spring Black Friday The blue hardware store The blue hardware store The orange hardware store
  29. 29. @EmailSnarketing Why It’s Bad • The real versions of these “holidays” are bad enough. • These are confusing at best. • Customers see right through this. • Don’t be the brand who cried “OMG Lowest prices of the year!!!!” …every month.
  30. 30. @EmailSnarketing Do this instead • Just don’t. Don’t do this. Send emails about literally anything else.
  31. 31. And while we’re on the subject of holidays that don’t make sense…
  32. 32. @EmailSnarketing Cyber Monday "The name Cyber Monday grew out of the observation that millions of otherwise productive working Americans, fresh off a Thanksgiving weekend of window shopping, were returning to high-speed Internet connections at work Monday and buying what they liked.” ~The New York Times
  33. 33. @EmailSnarketing Not exactly. • At the time, the Monday after Thanksgiving was nowhere NEAR the highest online sales day - it was more like #12. December 12 was the highest day for online sales in 2005, and December 13 was the highest in 2006. That pattern has continued, more or less. • Cyber Monday sales have increased over the years, but it’s not the day that most people are shopping.
  34. 34. And now we send Cyber Monday emails as if we didn’t all have devices with high speed internet in our hands at all times.
  35. 35. @EmailSnarketing The other problem with Cyber Monday… it’s not just a day.
  36. 36. @EmailSnarketing Do this instead
 #StopCyberMonday • If we must do it - let’s pick ONE day, okay? Stop “extending” these fake holidays. • Can we at least change the name? “Cyber” is a weird and icky word. • Or like, could we move it to Thanksgiving day so people can stay home, and have retail stores go back to being closed on Thanksgiving Day? Everyone wins there. We’re the marketers. We control this. SOLIDARITY! #StopCyberMonday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday Monday Eat turkey. Be with family. Customers can shop online at night. More online sales. Or in store, I guess, but that can go away too, right? Push in-store sales Push in-store sales Nothing
  37. 37. @EmailSnarketing Award Show Emails
  38. 38. @EmailSnarketing Award Shows I received all of these in the span of a few hours on Oscar Night.
  39. 39. @EmailSnarketing Why It’s Bad • This is lazy marketing. • These brands are just sending emails with the first subject line that pops into their heads for this occasion.  • Instead of sending something relevant to our products, we just try to make our products relevant to whatever’s going on, even if it doesn’t make sense.
  40. 40. @EmailSnarketing • With award shows, and ANY other special occasion: find something that makes sense for your brand, like Food52’s #oscarnoms • (This was on Twitter and was a last minute thing, but something like this could be promoted in email…) Do this Instead
  41. 41. @EmailSnarketing Kristin’s Final Thoughts
  42. 42. @EmailSnarketing • Brainstorm the first, most obvious things that come to mind with any given occasion. Throw out that list and do something else. • If you’ve done it before, don’t do it. Or at least, build on it. • If other brands have done it before and you liked it, don’t do it. • Think about what is special and unique about your brand. Highlight that in your emails instead. • If you don’t have enough original content to send emails every day, stop sending emails every day. • Email marketing isn’t just about selling things. Kristin’s Final Thoughts
  43. 43. Do something interesting. Like these brands…
  44. 44. @EmailSnarketing BarkBox • Sends newsletters with excellent, very shareable dog content • Promotion of their actual products is minimal and at the bottom of the email, but since the other content was so shareable, other people likely saw it.
  45. 45. @EmailSnarketing Bonobos • From Name: A Dress Shirt From Bonobos • Subject: I’d like to add you to my professional network • Linked to a clever LinkedIn page where you could connect with the shirt. The shirt had job history, recommendations, and connections.
  46. 46. @EmailSnarketing Poppin • Beautiful photography that tells a story with color and showcases what’s special about their products • Very clean layout, simple CTAs, and no gaudy promotional language
  47. 47. @EmailSnarketing DonorsChoose • Subject Line: Treat Ms. Bond's classroom • My last name is Bond, so of course I opened this email • Used data for personalization in an interesting way, asking people to donate to a teacher who has the same last name as them
  48. 48. @EmailSnarketing These brands all found a way to stand out by doing something completely different, that made sense for their brand. And we all can do that too.
  49. 49. @EmailSnarketing Now go re-write your welcome email.

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