Conversion Optimization 101: Copywriting Perspectives in Email Marketing

Sometime you have to flip your perspectiveLast week’s conversion optimization challenge was to take a look at the webinar invite sent out by WriterAccess.com with the subject line: Webinar Invite: Lessons Learned From 90,000 Content Orders. 

The email contained two major obstacles and a handful of smaller obstacles. The major obstacles are the copywriting perspective and the second one is the overuse of jargon. The smaller issues are related to building credibility in the host/presenter, the calls to action and point of action assurances.

This is what the email look liked (if you want to read the text you can from last’s weeks post):

 

My  friend, Brian Massey is looking to deal with the copy and calls to actions by flipping the perspective:

There are three “flips” I would test here. Each has implications for the subject line, copy, and call to action.

1. Consider writing it from the presenter instead of from the company. “I work every day with two of my favorite people: writers and the people who hire them. Now I want to share what I’ve learned.”

2. Start with a specific example instead of starting with the general benefits.
“Molly is a writer who has it figured out. In the past month alone she has…”

3. Invite them to a gathering of writers and clients instead of a “webinar.”
“Please Join Us” instead of “Register Now!”

By flipping you point at a different persona. So if you have the personas documented pick the flip that fits.

Alhan Keser has 6 suggestions that deal with jargon, the perspective and also some minor issues:

1.) What are “content orders”? I thought that I was familiar with most things related to content marketing, but I can’t say I know what that is. So, for now, that headline doesn’t mean much to me. Before reading any further, I will assume that it refers to ordering of content to be created. There may be no better way to say that.

2.) Instead of focusing on “lessons learned from” why not go with the primary benefit of attending this webinar: “How to get the Most out of Writer Access” and subheading “Based on data from 90,000 content orders from our clients”.

3.) The link with the date & time: Not a big deal, but is that time EST or PST? Not sure where Byron is located.

4.) There’s a lot of great reasons to attend this Webinar if you’re a client of WriterAccess. Much of it is buried in the paragraphs. I would break up the paragraphs into subheadings: “Who’s it for”, “What You’ll Get” and “Exclusive Gifts for Attending” (showing the ebook cover and a screenshot of the new content performance software)

5.) The intro and subsequent bullet points could be stronger. Something along the lines of “Get answers to some of the most challenging questions about working with WriterAccess” and highlight more specific issues to touch on pain points:
- “How to better onboard writers to save lots of time”
- “See trends on order instruction details, word counts, SEO requirements, prices, order types.
- “Writers will learn how to foster client relations.”

6.) Consider moving the first CTA into the main body of your text, right after the benefits. I did not notice the one at the top right until I thoroughly scanned the email.

Whenever I work on an email, I start with the end goal and work backwards.

1. What is the action we want the reader to take?

Register for a webinar.

2. What information do they need in order to take that action?

In order to register for the webinar, they need to know the date and time. As pointed out by Alhan, the date and time is presented as a link early on in the body test but it actually doesn’t tell you the time zone. Small but critical issue.

3. What happens if they have common objections?

The may have a scheduling conflict, but still be interested. They may not know who is presenting, how can I make it so they understand the authority and expertise of my presenter. Lastly, what do they need to know about the content so that they know they want to see this webinar?

Dealing with scheduling conflicts:

It still amazes me how few companies encourage people to register to get a notification when the replay of the webinar will be available even if you can’t attend at the scheduled time and hear the webinar live. So right next to the date you could do something like:

Thursday, November 29th, 2012 1:00 PM EST
Can’t make it? No worries! Register now and be notified by email when the webinar is available for replay (plus qualify for the bonuses).

Promote your Expert Presenter(s):

Don’t assume everyone knows your presenter, even if it is the CEO of your company and the email is going to your customers. There is always a bit of room and this template has plenty of room under the picture of the presenter to give a short bio and some bullet points about why this is a not to miss presenter.

Pump up the Persuasiveness of your Content:

What makes your email reader want to invest 30 minutes to an hour of their time to listen to your webinar? The problem in this email is the perspective that the writer of the email chose.

Whenever you want to get down to copywriting you can choose the between the Seven Copy Choices of Advanced Wordsmithing.

Which perspective from copy choice #3 do you think the email should have chosen:

Copy Choice No. 3: Me, Him, or You

First-person perspective is that of the speaker: I am standing. (Who cares!?) Third-person perspective is that of the outsider: He is standing. (The reader tends not to care.) Second-person perspective is that of the reader: You are standing in the snow, five and a half miles above sea level… Second-person perspective puts your reader right there in the action; you’re saying to your customers, “This is you, the person that you care most about.” When your goal is to persuade someone to take action, the “understood you” is extremely powerful. It’s the imperative call to action (“Click here”); it’s the avenue that will lead your customers to the richest, most satisfying mental imagery.

The email is written in first-person perspective, that of the presenter and CEO of WriterAccess.com, Byron White. As such many of the word choices are jargon and phrases he would use but they may not be familiar to the reader. What do you think the CEO of a content marketing company, who has seen over 90,000 content piece requirements set and projects completed could share with you about making your content more effective? Probably quite a bit.

If the writer just took the Second-person perspective and put you in the middle of the conversation the email would have been a lot more persuasive. Plus offering 2 extra bonuses for signing up. Why wouldn’t you register now?

 

photo by: Helga Weber
Please share if you think others would benefit.