I’m big on everyone having their own flavor and style to their emails…
Using Star Wars references and images, using images OR not, and adding photos of yourself with your sign off (or not).
...But there’s some specific formatting tips everyone can utilize to boost your results.
They can be used with your own flavor, but they’ll help your opens, clicks and overall engagement.
And the good news is these don’t add any extra time. You can quickly edit with these 5 tips while you’re writing your emails.
Let’s jump in!
You can watch the video or hop down if reading’s more your thang…
1. Utilize Preview Text
This is the line of text that appears after the subject line.
Notice how the Shopko example has a crazy long url that doesn’t mean anything to you.
This makes your email lose its personal touch and feel automated, even though your subscriber knows it’s automated.
Compare this to the example from Paul at Eat To Perform. See how he has text following the subject line? This is the preview text and he’s doing a great job utilizing it to play off his subject line and make his email more enticing to his readers.
Using ConvertKit? Here’s how to add preview text:
Go into HTML mode by clicking < > in the editor bar and at the very top of your email, add these lines of code:
Pre-header Text Goes Here
Swap out the text in the middle there.
In Mailchimp, convenient for you right where you add your subject line:
2. Let Your Copy Breathe
Give it some space. It’s really important with email how you lay out the words in the body of the email.
The example on the left has a LOT of copy bunched together. If you’re opening this on your phone, the first paragraph will feel hard. It will fill up the entire screen on their phone and your subscriber will think “I don’t have time to read this right now.”
Whereas the example on the right is easy on the eyes. It feels easier.
These two emails could have the same amount of copy, but because the one on the right is laying out the words in an easier to read format, you’re more likely to read it vs. the one on the left.
Make sure you break up long paragraphs. It might feel weird at first, but it’s a style that works best for email.
You can a single sentence on one line, followed up with two short sentences.
You want it to be a waterfall effect, where you’re taking your reader down your email.
3. Do Your Emails Pass the Scan Test?
This goes back to #2. Most people scan emails…they won’t read the whole thing (sorry). Some people absolutely will, but for those who don’t, you want to utilize formatting tricks so they catch the main point and most important points of the email.
Use bold, italics and lists (bullets or a 1, 2, 3).
Here’s an example from my client Sam, who just overhauled all his emails and they came out so beautiful.
He’s using bullet points to highlight benefits and a bolded sentence.
In this second example, Sam uses an image to showcase his point. A visual does wonders to explain a lot very quickly. He follows this up with a bullet point list so his reader catches the main point.
4. Make Your Links Clear, Easy to Read, and Repeat Them
This is SO important. As more and more people are catching emails on their phones, if you bury a link within a chunky paragraph, it’s going to be hard for your reader to find it.
Second, it will be hard for them to click on it since we’re using our fingers.
Make your links stand out by putting them on their own line.
Also, repeat them because as someone scans your email, if you have it in multiple places in your email, this gives them multiple opportunities to click on it when they’re ready.
Lastly, us a P.S. !!
THIS IS HUGE
Just adding a simple P.S. to the end of your emails will boost your sales incredibly. This was a tactic we used at Bowflex and it was ALWAYS the #1 link people clicked to buy from.
5. Change Your Subject Line
Ok, maybe not quite a formatting tip but a definite must. Gentle reminder to make sure you change your subject line in your emails. If you send the same subject line over and over, you’re missing out on the #1 reason why people open your emails in the first place (a great subject line!).
This example is from someone I follow and her content is AH-mazing! But she’d get way more opens if she changed out her subject line. It’s KEY to getting your subject lines opened.
Try writing 5 and then choose your favorite. Take it one step further and if your tool has an easy A/B test set up, try out a subject line test and get some learnings to roll out with your next email.
Instantly sharpen your emails
Get the Free Guide your peers are using: "After that one change I got a sale." Find out your Level and get your roadmap.