The approach is to focus on a specific group of people and address one relevant problem that they deal with enough that they might be motivated to do something about it.
Why not include multiple points? It’s been proven that trying to say many things dilutes your message and reduces the chance that your email will even be noticed.
We loosely use the “hero’s journey” format, a common template for stories. Follow the steps below to craft a single-minded email using this approach:
1. Identify one ideal target group that you want to reach (title, role, industry, type of issue, etc)
2. Brainstorm all of his/her problems as it relates to your category. Keep asking “what causes the problem” until you get to the real problem the person is facing
3. Choose one problem that you believe is the most relevant and irritating
4. Create an outline by answering the questions below:
- Character: Brief description of your ideal target’s title, role and/or situation
- Has a problem: The one problem you chose in step 3
- Meets a guide: The benefit you offer that will help the problem
- Has a plan: Your offerings + an example of how you’ve overcome these challenges before
- Avoids Failure: What the person is most afraid of happening
- Ends in success: What makes the person successful? What does he/she really want to happen?
- Transforms (from-to): Two word combination. One that describes how the person felt before and then after he/she experienced success or avoided failure. You can brainstorm multiple word combinations
- Call to action (CTA): Link to a case study, landing page, call now, set meeting, etc.
5. Use this outline as a starting point to craft the email. Don’t overthink it. Write an email that helps the person understand that you “get” the problem and genuinely can help.
6. Write the subject line – pose a question or provide a statement that is about the problem, the potential failure or the success
7. Ask someone who has insight about the ideal target and problem to read it for you
p.s. Even if the person doesn’t open it, you can still call and follow-up to see if there are any questions about it.