You’re building a brand that’s utterly brilliant. You have so much to offer. Your ideal clients are sure to jump for joy when they hear all about it.

And so you draft an email to kick off your email campaign. It’s chock-full of interesting facts, exciting news, and links. You hit SEND. And you wait.

And wait.

Nothing. Not one response.

You get an activity notification…telling you about people unsubscribing from your email list.


What are you doing wrong? How can it be that so many members of your target audience are ignoring or outright rejecting your titillating, mouth-watering, ground-breaking email?

You may be surprised by how many things could have gone wrong. Today, I’m talking about the common pitfalls that are sabotaging your well-intentioned efforts to build a brand with email.

Building a Brand, without Email Turn-Offs

When an email campaign is properly executed, it will not only help with building a brand, it will work to support the building of a brilliant brand. It will increase brand awareness, encourage clicks and conversions, increase website traffic and social media engagement, and ultimately result in profit enhancement. In short, a great email will turn a prospective client on.

When there’s even one thing off with an email communication, your ideal clients can be turned off to your brand.

Here is a list of provisions we suggest you make whilst writing your branded emails, to avoid target-audience turn-off:

  • Keep it Light: Formal and verbose language will only appeal to a small percentage of the population. Complicated vocabulary and complex concepts are big turn-offs for most people (who approach their inboxes with a sense of urgency). Keep it simple. Speak to your ideal clients in a language they will understand and appreciate.
  • Choose a Comfortable Frequency: Everyone’s inbox is stuffed. And if you’re sending emails to high-profile people, you can assume that their inboxes are overflowing. One of the best ways to be ignored (and to push people away from your brand) is to bombard them with daily emails. Don’t be a pest. Back it down. Make every email count for more, and unless you’re targeting those who have opted into a programme, keep the emails at once per week or less.
  • Keep it Short: People are busy—that’s no secret. Here’s what you may not know: Even when busy people have some time to kill, they’re not investing more than 20 seconds in reading anything…no matter how enticing. For this reason, your emails should be kept to a maximum of 75 words. More than this, and you’ve lost them.
  • Keep it Concise: Along the lines of the previous directive, get to the point. Avoid repeating words, phrases, and concepts. Say what you need to say in the most direct manner possible, whilst still keeping your target audience’s language preference in mind and avoiding curtness or coldness.
  • Put Information First: Think about it: What are the chances that an email recipient is thinking to himself, I want to buy X right now, and then behold…from cyber heaven comes a message advertising the sale of that item. Let’s get real. You’re not going to incite many people to buy just by “showing up.” Email connectivity should be about building your brand awareness and supplying valuable information—not about cajoling people into spending money when they weren’t intending to do so.
  • Communicate the Benefit: “What’s in it for me?” This is the question asked by today’s consumer. Make the answer to this question clear, early on in your email, and people will be more likely to take action.
  • Identify the Problem: Consumers want to know that you understand why they need what you’re offering. Show them that you empathise with their problem, and you will open their minds to hearing about how you’re about to solve it.
  • Believe in your Brand: Never apologise for contacting recipients. Never apologise for your brand. Always write with confidence and with your passion for your brand at the root of all communications. If you truly believe that your brand will make people’s lives better, that belief will emanate from your text.
  • Tap Emotions: Emotions are the things that push today’s consumer toward patronage and brand loyalty. What emotion is most valuable to your ideal client? What emotion will cause your ideal client to want to own your product or experience your service? Use keywords and phrases, intended to stir up that emotion, in your email campaigns.
  • Ask for One Thing: Remember that short attention span? Ask your recipients to do more than one thing (click, sign up, buy, etc.), and you’ll blow it. You will overwhelm them, and they will lose focus. Every email should have one end result in mind. Focus on that one action, and you’ll multiply your chances of it getting done.
  • Ask for Something: To the other end of the previous point, every email needs to have a desired action associated with it. End without asking your recipients to do something, and your email was essentially in vain. Always believe that there will be at least one person interested enough to take the next step…and show them that step.
  • Highlight Investment Return: Whether you’re asking for recipients to spend time or money, make it clear that whatever they invest will be returned in multiples. Maybe they’re being asked to take time to respond—then make it clear that the time your brand will save them will make their investment a wise one.
  • Stay Relevant: If you’re not in-touch with the personalities, problems, and needs of your target audience, it will become evident in your email campaign. Send something out that’s not relevant to the interests of your recipients, and you will damage your email relationship (and more). Take the time to get to know your target audience. Give them what they’re craving. They will repay you with their attention…and maybe with their patronage.
  • Communicate Urgency: If an email recipient closes your email with the intention of coming back to it later, she will most likely forget all about it. Include an incentive, or a reason, to take action NOW, to avoid this problem.

Email is no longer the most desirable form of communication. It is often viewed as an inconvenience. This does not mean that email is dead; it does, however, mean that it should be only one part of a comprehensive brand communication strategy.

Are you building a brand, and hoping to find better ways to magnify the fruits of your efforts? Then might we suggest enrolling in our One-Day B.R.A.N.D. Kick Starter Online Masterclass? You may choose to attend a live-broadcast event, or to get it on-demand every 15 minutes. Simply click here to register and learn more about building a brand today.

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