8 ways to write shorter tweets and subject lines


short peopleemail-marketing-reports.com

The world is full of sensible advice that’s hard to put into practice.

Do more exercise.

Reduce your stress levels.

Accept that salt and vinegar flavor chips are not, in fact, a mainstay of a well-balanced diet. (Damn).

Oh, and keep your tweets and subject lines short.

Actually you can argue about that last bit of advice. But if you have something to say and have two equally impactful ways of saying it, then pick the shorter one.

Often it’s just a question of practicality.

Shortening your Tweets makes it easier to fit the message within the 140 character limit. If you can get the length down further, then you leave enough space for people to retweet your message in its entirety*.

Shorter subject lines avoid the pitfalls of email software arbitrarily cutting off your words.

But…how do you actually keep subject lines and Tweets short?

I’m hoping you’ll offer your own suggestions in the comments, as there’s not a lot of practical advice out there beyond, um, “keep it short”.

But here a few tips I’ve picked up over the years… Leer más “8 ways to write shorter tweets and subject lines”

Six approaches for future-proof email marketing

So in a terrifying moment of weakness I found myself saying:

“It would be nice to get 3000 Twitter followers by the end of the year”

Oh dear.

Why 3000? Why by the end of the year? Why focus on THAT metric? Why, Mark, why?

I’m only human. The seductive appeal of using a random number of followers, likes, +1’s or subscribers as your measure of success is a tricky one to resist.

But the mistake led me to ask whether I’ve learned anything over the past 13+ years of online and email marketing.

Cue a brief period of panic…followed by a longer period of reflection.

Here’s what popped out: six approaches and principles that have stood the test of time.
1. Understand the true meaning of value

Well, it didn’t take me long to come up with the principle of “delivering value” as an email must.

You have to give to get: give value and it comes back in return…as opens, clicks, conversions, loyalty, word of mouth etc.

But there are three traps we commonly fall into.

Avoid one-way value

It’s important to ask how different email approaches, content and offers might address business needs.

But the result depends on the recipients reacting the right way.

And their reaction depends on how these different email approaches, content and offers contribute to their needs.

So the real question to ask is how email can help our subscribers, and in doing so help us.

Don’t over-estimate value

We’re all (probably) passionate about our products and services. Readers usually aren’t quite so excited.

Our enthusiasm can blind us to the true value of what we offer through email, leading to unrealistic expectations of response and sending email to people who maybe shouldn’t be getting it.

Don’t misunderstand value

So what is “value” anyway?

Yep, for a lot of people it’s discounts, coupons, savings, free shipping, or a bonus lollipop if you register by Friday.

But it’s also helpful information, feeling appreciated, feeling understood, a story, entertainment, humor, a sense of community or just a simple reminder that the sender is still open for business…

I’m not a psychologist, but the potential value you might deliver via an email message covers a lot more than “20% off your next purchase”.


learningemail-marketing-reports.com

So in a terrifying moment of weakness I found myself saying:

“It would be nice to get 3000 Twitter followers by the end of the year”

Oh dear.

Why 3000? Why by the end of the year? Why focus on THAT metric? Why, Mark, why?

I’m only human. The seductive appeal of using a random number of followers, likes, +1’s or subscribers as your measure of success is a tricky one to resist.

But the mistake led me to ask whether I’ve learned anything over the past 13+ years of online and email marketing.

Cue a brief period of panic…followed by a longer period of reflection.

Here’s what popped out: six approaches and principles that have stood the test of time.

1. Understand the true meaning of value

Well, it didn’t take me long to come up with the principle of “delivering value” as an email must.

You have to give to get: give value and it comes back in return…as opens, clicks, conversions, loyalty, word of mouth etc.

But there are three traps we commonly fall into.

Avoid one-way value

It’s important to ask how different email approaches, content and offers might address business needs.

But the result depends on the recipients reacting the right way.

And their reaction depends on how these different email approaches, content and offers contribute to their needs.

So the real question to ask is how email can help our subscribers, and in doing so help us.

Don’t over-estimate value

We’re all (probably) passionate about our products and services. Readers usually aren’t quite so excited.

Our enthusiasm can blind us to the true value of what we offer through email, leading to unrealistic expectations of response and sending email to people who maybe shouldn’t be getting it.

Don’t misunderstand value

So what is “value” anyway?

Yep, for a lot of people it’s discounts, coupons, savings, free shipping, or a bonus lollipop if you register by Friday.

But it’s also helpful information, feeling appreciated, feeling understood, a story, entertainment, humor, a sense of community or just a simple reminder that the sender is still open for business…

I’m not a psychologist, but the potential value you might deliver via an email message covers a lot more than “20% off your next purchase”. Leer más “Six approaches for future-proof email marketing”

Subject line inspiration: where to get it

Ah…subject lines!

We do know an awful lot about what they should achieve and how.

But I also know what a painting should achieve and the key role of brush, paint and canvas. Yet, curiously, none of my efforts are hanging in the Louvre (last time I checked).

Sometimes we need to see what others are doing before we turn theory into practice. So following on from an earlier post on sites to inspire your design and tactics, here some resources to help you construct that winning subject line:
Subject line collections and campaign databases

Chad White’s near daily “AM Inbox” posts at the Retail Email Blog include the “subjectivity scanner”: a list of notable subject lines from that day’s retail emails. Be sure to also see the Subject Line Halls of Fame, dating back to 2006.

The VerticalResponse blog also regularly features collections of themed subject lines. For example:

* 50 All-Time Great Retail Subject Lines
* 29 Great B2B Subject Lines
* 20 Holiday Subject Lines

Subject lines are also a particular feature of the Email Institute’s gallery and the eDataSource, Emailium, Email Campaign Archive and Emailtastic campaign databases.
Twitter

Tweets with links need to get people to click while staying under 140 characters in length. Driving action in just a few words? Hmmm…sounds a lot like the subject line challenge.

Track the tweets of top stores, bloggers and media sites to see how they make use of limited space to get a response. For example:

* Dell Outlet and Amazon.com Deals on Twitter
* The “No turn on red” retail blog aggregates tweets from top retail and ecommerce Twitter accounts on this page
* The 100 most influential news media accounts
* Twittorati.com aggregates the tweets of the world’s top bloggers

In particular, when an article or offer is published look for other people retweeting the message. Many simply repeat the original tweet verbatim. Some will rewrite the headline and often improve on the original.

I’ve learnt much about headline writing from how others tweet about my articles.


By Mark Brownlow
http://www.email-marketing-reports.com/iland/2011/02/subject-line-inspiration.html

newspaper headlinesAh…subject lines!

We do know an awful lot about what they should achieve and how.

But I also know what a painting should achieve and the key role of brush, paint and canvas. Yet, curiously, none of my efforts are hanging in the Louvre (last time I checked).

Sometimes we need to see what others are doing before we turn theory into practice. So following on from an earlier post on sites to inspire your design and tactics, here some resources to help you construct that winning subject line:

Subject line collections and campaign databases

Chad White’s near daily “AM Inbox” posts at the Retail Email Blog include the “subjectivity scanner”: a list of notable subject lines from that day’s retail emails. Be sure to also see the Subject Line Halls of Fame, dating back to 2006.

The VerticalResponse blog also regularly features collections of themed subject lines. For example:

Subject lines are also a particular feature of the Email Institute’s gallery and the eDataSourceEmailiumEmail Campaign Archive and Emailtastic campaign databases.

Twitter

Tweets with links need to get people to click while staying under 140 characters in length. Driving action in just a few words? Hmmm…sounds a lot like the subject line challenge.

Track the tweets of top stores, bloggers and media sites to see how they make use of limited space to get a response. For example:

In particular, when an article or offer is published look for other people retweeting the message. Many simply repeat the original tweet verbatim. Some will rewrite the headline and often improve on the original.

I’ve learnt much about headline writing from how others tweet about my articles. Leer más “Subject line inspiration: where to get it”