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10 Ways to Write Great Promo Emails That Convert

Email is a special place online.

Just like your phone number. You care deeply about who you give your email.

Are they trustworthy?

Do you really know them?

Why should you give them your email?

These are the same questions you ask yourself before giving anyone your phone number.

Businesses send promotional emails to their prospects and customers online.

You’re in the business to sell. And email can help you sell.

Amazon uses emails to sell.

Amazon uses email to sell

I receive a lot of good promotional emails each day from brands.

I’ve bought many times from brands online after reading their promo emails.

Buying after reading promo emails

These brand built trust with me through email.

If they can do it, you can do it too.

There are ten ways to write great promo emails that make people buy your products or services online.

1. Send deals and promotions

Web users giving you their emails is like giving you their home addresses. You can always reach them through emails.

In fact, 72% shoppers prefer to receive promotional content through email.

Shoppers receiving messages from emails

Email lets you connect better and deeper with prospects and customers than you can on social media and search engines.

Most of your social media followers won’t see your social media update.

For example, organic reach on Facebook is very low. The last time marketers checked, it was around 6%.

Organic reach on Facebook is low

Facebook organic reach is believed to be even much lower today.

Reach on email is much better.

If you have a good email list of subscribers who truly care about your brand, you can expect an open rate around 17%.

The average open rate of emails

That means 17% of your subscribers will see your email messages.

This makes email the best place to run promotions.

Let your subscribers know that they are qualified for those promotions because they are on your email list.

If your subscribers are not getting promos that are exclusive to them, it’s time you start doing that.

2. Show how your company is making a positive impact in the world

We all like to meet and associate with good people that are making the world a better place.

Brands are not an exemption from this.

Brands that contribute positively to their societies will have more reach than those who don’t.

When people say good things about someone, you like them even if you haven’t met them. Brands are the same.

I can’t count how many times I’ve seen companies being talked about in the press and I decided to visit their websites because of the good things they are doing.

If they are making the world a better place, the company must be good.

Their products and services must be great.

By buying their product or service, I know I’m not just helping them make profits. I know I’m contributing positively to the world.

As you help people and communities, you also help your brand.

Even the New York Times wrote about this.

New York Times wrote about helping the society

If you’re making the world a better place, your email subscribers should know it too.

It gives you stories to tell in their inboxes. We all love stories.

I must stress that your primary purpose for making the world a better place shouldn’t be because you want subscribers to open your email.


Do it because you want to do it. Do it because you want to help people. Do it because you want your business to be part of something good.

I open emails from Mozilla because I love that brand. Of course, Mozilla is a nonprofit organization. Each email from them has a link at the bottom asking me to donate to Mozilla.

Donate to Mozilla

People click that link and donate to Mozilla.

So, how’s your brand making the world a better place?

Share it with your email subscribers before asking them to buy.

3. Notify prospects or customers of triggered milestones

You want each year to be better than last year. Your customers want the same thing.

When I receive notifications from Grammarly about how well I’ve written this week, it makes me feel good about myself. I like the brand more as a result.

Grammarly emails

LinkedIn, Medium and Quora notify their users when they reach major milestones on their respective platforms.

Medium writer milestones

The purpose of sending those notifications is to remind users how well they are doing on the platform

This email marketing tactic keeps their users going back to them.

If you offer both freemium and premium versions of your product, this is an effective tactic you should be using right now.

When freemium users receive notifications about the progress they are making on the platform, they feel good and love your product more.

Then is the perfect time to ask them to upgrade or become a premium user. You’re likely to turn them into customers when you ask for the sale when they are happy with your brand.

Use this tactic with caution. Don’t try to deceive anyone by telling them they are making good progress, when in fact, they are not even using your product or service.

4. Ask questions in your emails

People hate being talked to.

The rise of social media and blogging contributed to two-way conversations online.

When you publish an article on your blog, readers can drop comments.

When you share an update on social media, users can respond with their views or click the “like” button.

It gives users the opportunity to talk to you too.

Unfortunately, this isn’t common in emails – especially promo emails.

All most marketers want is, make the sale.

Don’t be hell-bent on selling that you don’t want to listen to your customers.

The email wasn’t created for selling. It was created to provide a platform for people to have one-on-one conversations with each other online.

Your number one goal for using email shouldn’t be to make sales but to give your subscribers an opportunity to communicate with you.

Now, if you have thousands of subscribers, this may look impossible.

You can’t read and respond to each subscriber who emails you.

I’ll like to tell you that the future of marketing lies in customer service.

Companies who treat each customer with respect and care will always win.

Your customers should be able to reach and communicate with you through email.

Ask them questions.

Perhaps, most of your subscribers won’t bother to respond.

But the fact that you try to get them to talk to you is something they’ll keep in mind. They will see you differently from the competition.

For instance, let’s assume you run a company that produces and sells CBD oil for dogs.

You can ask subscribers the kinds of breeds they have and how old their dogs are.

Passionate dog owners will respond. It shows you don’t just want to make the sale, but you also want to develop a relationship with them.

Doing this will make them buy more from your company.

5. Send discount codes

Who doesn’t like discounts?

If you want to save money on the things you buy without jeopardizing quality, won’t you do it?

I will. I love discounts.

Recently, I’ve been buying a lot of information products online. Most products I bought were at discount prices.

Udemy is my favorite site. I’ve picked up a lot of valuable skills in the past months by buying courses on the site.

They make me a regular customer because of the discounts. Sometimes, I just buy. Not because I need it. But because the product was selling at a discount price.

Most web hosting companies convert their first-time customers by offering them discounts.

Web hosting companies offer discounts

Risk-taking doesn’t come easily to everyone. Ideally, consumers will like to try the product for free first and start paying later.

Your subscribers may be dragging their feet because your prices are a little bit high.

By offering them discounts in your promo emails, they’ll see a chance to get your product for a reduced price.

6. Use animated GIFs

GIF means “Graphic Interchange Format.”

GIF is a computer file that is used for sending images, especially moving images.

I’m sure you’ve seen a lot of GIFs on the web.

Animated gifs in promo emails

GIFs add some fun to your email messages.

You can use it to get the attention of subscribers.

One important thing to keep in mind is that the GIF image you use should be connected to your content.

The GIF should send a message that, at least, get a subscriber to smile.

If you can get a subscriber to smile, there’s a good chance they’ll become a customer.

GIFs give you the opportunity to get attention and keep it.

As you may know, attention is the most important thing when selling online.

If you don’t have subscribers’ attention, you can’t convert them into customers.

Create GIF images using Photoshop. Or, use this web tool.

For example, a San Antonio dentist like Cute Smiles 4 Kids can use GIF images that get prospects’ attention in their emails.

7. Ask inactive customers to return

There are many reasons why inactive customers may not be buying from you again.

It could be that they no longer need your product or service. Or, they weren’t satisfied with it.

While you may not be able to win all your inactive customers back, you can get some of them to come back.

Create an offer they can’t resist.

Email offers inactive customers can't resist

Inactive customers shouldn’t be receiving the same emails your prospects, and current customers are getting.

It might make them dislike your brand more.

Do yourself a favor by creating an offer that is specifically for them.

Some inactive customers may not be happy with a competitor they’ve switched to after leaving your brand.

By reading your newly created offer that is only for them, they can decide to return to you.

8. Send a roundup of mix content

Promo emails aren’t for selling alone. You can do a lot more with them.

Your subscribers may have decided to join your email list in exchange for a free e-book or e-course.

An email optin form

If you create lots of content and collect emails on your site, most of your subscribers probably join your email list so that they can continue to receive new content from you.

Keep sending subscribers what they want if you want them to buy your product or service.

Also, publish a mix of different content formats and send them to your subscribers.

Here are the top content formats:

  1. Videos
  2. Articles
  3. Podcast
  4. Infographics
  5. Case studies

Some people prefer certain content formats over others.

For example, I enjoy listening to podcasts and reading case studies.

Some people like watching videos.

By sending different content formats, different subscribers will continue to get in contact with your brand. The more contacts they have with your brand, the greater the possibility of them becoming customers.

A mix of content will keep your subscribers engaged with your brand.

Avoid aggressively pushing for the sale in your content. Just keep subscribers returning to your site.

This promotional tactic will lead to increased brand visibility for your company.

9. Remind customers to renew

If you sell subscription services, because your paying customers are active doesn’t mean they know when their subscription is due for renewal.

SiteGround sent me this renewal notification. I renewed immediately after reading this email.

SiteGround renewal

Imagine they didn’t send this renewal notification, I could lose years of work.

Renewal notification helps you keep your current customers.

You must do everything not to lose them.

Sending renewal emails with some discount to encourage immediate action from your current customers.

10. Use it to say goodbye to inactive subscribers

All email lists have some inactive subscribers.

The bigger your email list, the more inactive subscribers you have.

Inactive subscribers are bad for your email marketing campaign. If someone isn’t opening your emails again, it’s time to say goodbye to them.

But don’t just say goodbye alone. Include a mouth-watering offer that could make them start opening your emails again.

If the owner is still using the email, he/she may like your offer.

For example, you can offer inactive subscribers 20% discount on your product or service.

If they open the goodbye email, it means they are still somehow interested in your brand. You just have to do more to entice them.

Goodbye emails shouldn’t be a sad way of saying goodbye to a subscriber. You can use them to promote your products in a way that doesn’t annoy inactive subscribers.


Email marketing offers a higher ROI than any other digital marketing strategy.

But to do it well, you need to send the right emails that convert subscribers into customers.

Don’t just send emails to your subscribers. Send emails that’ll make them think about your brand.

In this article, I’ve outlined ten ways to write great promo emails that make people buy.

You should know that you need to collect emails on your site before you start sending promo emails.

A mere 100 email addresses aren’t enough to make lots of money.

You need more.

And how do you get more emails?

The answer is GrowthFunnel.

GrowthFunnel helps you create high-converting popups that turn visitors into subscribers and social media followers.

It’s free to start using GrowthFunnel.

Sign up today.