I’m on a personal email crusade

Not being able to delete swathes of emails on my iPhone (the way I do on my desktop) it would be nice if more than a handfull of them were actually worth reading.

Some do get it right. I got an email from The Motley Fool the other day. It had a great story in it and it really sold the service they were offering. So much so that they are now on my 'to do' list.

People don’t read long emails

An argument as old as the hills. People don’t actually read anything if it’s not relevant and the copy doesn't interest them (was going to use engage but I hate that word with a passion).

And people don’t always read short emails either. I got one from Glyndebourne the other day. Lovely large picture, but then some critic's review of shows that I knew nothing of – including copy partly in German!! (I’m not particularly cultured and they didn’t recognise that I had never been before). I know Glyndebourne is a great experience so why don’t they tell me about that? Leave the German for the cultured previous visitors!

I though it was all about story telling

I have read a lot of marketing articles that bang on about story telling. But no company seems to use it in their emails. Everything is just ‘content’ or as like to call it ‘stuff’.

I’m sure these companies want me to click on the email, where I will be taken through to a page where they can tell me a story. But unless they hook me first I’m not going to do that.

Take an email I just got about Private Dinning. It asked me a yes no question about Private Dinning in the headline. I said no (in my head no out loud!) so I didn’t read on. And that was after seeing that the email was from Private Dinning and the Subject was about Private Dining. So why the hell keep banging on about it? Tell me why the private dinning is an experience I shouldn’t miss – tell me a story.

If ever there was an organisation that had stories to tell, then Shelter should have loads. I am therefore always disappointed by their emails that seem very much matter of fact and uninteresting. And in Google search results their landing pages are devoid of content let alone any story – they just say things like ‘£33 could help a family find and keep a home’. Why do they think I wouldn’t want to know why!!

A crusade of one

I have probably gone off on one!! My crusade is probably just an irritation with the fact that most emails I get seem not to have any real thinking in them about why I might respond. Even those that come through an agency (where you'd expect some thought) have nice pictures but very little story.

I guess it’s because we are now in the world of ‘templates’ – template websites, template emails, template ads etc. It’s not that they are bad (especially if you are low budget business) but the template is not the story, it’s just a framework for the story.

Coming soon – my rant on templates!!!!

The Stream Team

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