There is a famous Hindi phrase – “Arre kehna kya chahte ho bhai?”
(Translation for those who are not fluent in Hindi – the phrase means, “Your message is confusing, and I am not quite sure what to make of it.”)
The world is noisy. Marketers are making it noisier.
“The way Marketers fight clutter is by making more clutter.” – Seth Godin.
Email marketing is no different. Most of the emails are cluttered and leave the reader thinking “Arre kehna kya chahte ho?”
The emails are written without any specific purpose in mind. The content is all over the place. There are multiple stories, multiple open loops, and multiple take-aways that the user is expected to get.
Take the example of a classic HTML newsletter.
Yes, the HTML newsletter can have merit in certain situations and for certain brands, but more often than not, an HTML newsletter is just a lazy effort to bombard the subscribers with information.
It’s not that such crimes are not committed in a text email. Text emails can also become chaotic, and purposeless.
These emails leave the reader overwhelmed.
I would like to bring in a quote by the writing legend – William Zinsser. His book “Writing well” is a classic and a must-read for anyone who is looking to upgrade their writing quality.
“Every successful piece of nonfiction should leave the reader with one provocative thought that he or she didn’t have before. Not two thoughts, or five -just one. So decide what single point you want to leave in the reader’s mind.” – William Zinsser
This piece of advice has changed my writing, and I am hoping that it will help change yours.
Can our emails be specific?
Can our email have only one agenda… one purpose?
Can we focus on keeping our communication clean?
After every email, can we leave the reader with only a big idea… with just one big thought?
I hope we can, especially if we ever plan to cut through the noise.
Before we start writing an email, we can ask ourselves 2 questions –
- Who is this email for?
- What is it for? What is the one thing that I want the reader to have after he finishes reading this email?
Intro music credits: Dan O songs.