No, no. I know in actuality people still DO read. It’s just that we spend so much of our online time multitasking. Our reading is scattered. We skim. We skip. We have 12 tabs open at once.
So you can’t expect your newsletter subscribers to savor every word in every email.
This doesn’t mean, of course, that you should distill your entire message down to a single sentence based around a call-to-action. Just be conscious of and respectful of your reader’s time. “Don’t bore us; get to the chorus,” as they say.
How to make sure your email newsletter is just the right length
1. Don’t crowd the most important info — If you find yourself wanting to share four different things, hesitate! Instead, focus on the one or two most important news items and save the rest for another email. Your subscribers won’t mind receiving more frequent mailings if each one is easier to digest.
2. Similarly, watch out for competing messages — So you’ve boiled your newsletter down to two items. That’s great. But what if one is “Please vote for my band online” and the other one is “buy your tickets now because they’re running out?” Your subscribers might be split in terms of what action they’re going to take. Better to include one call-to-action and one supporting news item that won’t “cannibalize” your engagement.
3. Press “save” and send tomorrow — If you’re planning your email well enough in advance, there’s no reason you need to send it right after it’s been written. Give it a day. Come back with fresh eyes. If anything seems remotely uninteresting, cut it! Imagine how boring those bits will be for recipients.
4. Don’t repeat yourself — Do you need a “thanks” at the beginning and again at the conclusion? Do you need that extra sentence of explanation? Do you need to link to your website in the middle of the paragraph and again at the end? Maybe those things can be deleted.
What do you think? When is an email too long? Are there ever times when you prefer to read a longer email newsletter? Let us know in the comments section below.
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