Writing engaging email copy

We all know that email marketing is one of our most powerful channels, but how do you craft the perfect email, with an attention-grabbing subject line and engaging copy that sends your click through rates to record levels?

Well, here’s the secret – a well-written email is all you need to get the conversions you need. It genuinely does come down to a few simple copywriting best practices. So, in this blog I wanted to share our tips for writing effective email copy that will have your subscribers engaged and interested in your services, so you can get more conversations.

Writing your subject line

Unsurprisingly, half of our tips are about your subject line. Why? Because people won’t read your engaging email copy if they aren’t interested enough to open your email in the first place. It’s the crucial first step that you have to get just right.

Use actionable language

Start by considering what you hope your client will do after they read your email, and work backwards from there. What’s your call to action? A good example of actionable language would be: Download Our 2021 In Focus Whitepaper

Ensure you make it clear to the recipient what they can do with the information in the email.


Emails that are highly segmented tend to perform much better than those that aren’t personalised, and it’s no surprise; the more segmented the list, the more you can personalise the subject line to the email recipient. Personalisation is an effective way of showing that you understand the needs of your client.

Yes, you can start by inserting someone’s [FIRSTNAME], but personalisation can and should go further than that.

Each segment of your subscribers is looking for something different from your emails so consider segmenting based on the location or sector of your subscribers.

Be concise and clear

When writing a subject line, clarity is key. You can add in personality once you have drafted a clear and concise subject line, but never let that take priority. Research shows that short subject lines – between six and ten words – have the best open rates.

Align your subject line with your copy

This is a key point – your subject line and email message should align. Whatever the subject promises, the email needs to deliver. Not only is it responsible and reinforces trust between your firm and your customers, it also increases click through rates.

Don’t forget about your preview text

Use this space carefully to encourage your subscribers to open your email. This short snippet can give your subscribers a better idea of what’s inside the email. Again, short and brief is best here.

How to write your email

Now you’ve nailed your subject line, let’s look at the copywriting skills you need to in the body of your email.

Keep it relevant

Just as the subject line should establish relevance to your needs, the email body must do the same. Start your email by explaining why you are emailing them – and be human in your tone! This sets the tone for the message and explains to your subscriber just why they should read on.

Focus the copy on the reader, not yourself

Use the second person (you, your and yours) to centre the copy around your client. Focus the attention on your client!

It’s a subtle tactic that helps you remain value-oriented whilst writing your copy.

Talk about benefits

Don’t make your subscribers do the hard work. It’s your job to explain the value of your email to them, rather than just explaining the feature you are offering them.

Think about these two examples of email copy, one is touting the feature, whilst the other is touting the benefit …

  • 20% off all Self-Assessment software
  • Take the strain out of filing taxes with 20% off all software

The first piece of copy tells you about the discount, but doesn’t explain how it will help you reach your business goals. Version two identifies the strength of the product (it makes a hard job easier) and pushes the discount on that basis.

Avoid industry jargon

Although demonstrating your expertise is important, you are talking to a client, who is human, so write accordingly.

I know this can be challenging, but trust me, it works.

Be brief

So many marketers are guilty of including far too much information in emails. Think about what happens when an email lands in your inbox – do you dedicate time to carefully read every word? Most likely, no, you skim it to find out if it’s relevant or interesting.

Make it easy for your subscribers and keep things short and sweet. Summarise the story for the reader and let them click through to a page to read more.

So, remember, the key to effective email copy is understanding your audience. Don’t be afraid to A/B test emails to find out what works and consider these steps to increase your open rates and improve those click through numbers. Good luck!