This is a guest post by Upasna Gautam, Digital Marketing Intern at Magic Logix, a digital interactive marketing agency specializing in customized website design, website development, SEO and online marketing. Upasna has offered to share her insights around one of the trickiest—but most essential—marketing tools: the email pitch. Here are her 5 tips for crafting the perfect pitch.
“Never judge a book by its cover.” Sound familiar? In today’s event industry, this “cover” has now evolved into a new form: the email pitch. The email pitch is your chance to make a good first impression… or be sent to the Trash folder. Here are 5 tips to stay in the inbox and get a reply:
1) Back to basics. Implement the fundamental writing principle: have a beginning, middle, and end. To start, always address the contact of interest by name. In nutshell, the beginning should be an introduction of yourself; the middle should highlight key points of what you can bring to the table and how it is especially beneficial to your contact; and the end should reiterate your genuine interest in working together. A basic rule of thumb: your pitch should fit no more than one screen shot. Remember, the pitch email is the cover of your book, so it doesn’t need to tell the whole story – it just needs to attract interest.
2) Less is more. Verbose presentations and protracted explanations are not impressive, and will more than likely turn off a potential client. Skip the flowery vocabulary – it gives off the vibe that you’re trying to cover something up with all that glitter. Never underestimate the power of the simple, unvarnished truth. Keep in mind that if your concept can’t be grasped in a short period of time with the simple written word, your email is going to be tossed into Trash faster than you can say ‘spam’.
3) Buzz off. This plays off my previous point, but deserves direct limelight – don’t use buzz words! Back as a newbie in the event and marketing industry, I was shocked to come across the misuse and sheer abuse of these meaningless words on a regular basis, and it is SO not attractive. My thought to myself: “If I think this sounds tacky, a potential client must not even give it a second thought.” Unfortunately, these buzz words are tossed around and thrown into email pitches with little or no regard to their actual application. The thing with this type of vocabulary is that it ultimately becomes completely ignorable and is disrespecting the intelligence of the reader. Here’s my current blacklist: social media platform(s), Fortune 500, innovative, synergy, reinvent and technology.
4) Relax. If you’re like me when it comes to writing, then you probably sit and ponder the “perfect beginning” long before it actually comes out in written words… and then once you hit the keyboard, you are consumed in a writing frenzy and don’t stop. When you do finally come to the end, there’s nothing between you and clicking “Send.” Don’t do that. Get up, take a walk, temporarily distract yourself with something completely different, and then come back to it. This could be an hour later, or 24 hours later. Always ask for input, especially from someone who isn’t a coworker or in the same industry – getting an outsider’s perspective is vital.
5) Show you care. When stepping into this industry, I knew one thing: I had to set myself apart. One of the most important ways that I’ve employed this is by personalizing every email pitch I send out. You cannot expect someone to care about you and your service if you don’t show that you care about them. It’s so simple but often overlooked. Remember the sandwich format for the email pitch that was discussed in my first point? Apply this idea right in the beginning (even better if you can use it in all three parts). Do a little research, and make a personal connection. Humans are touched by ordinary things in extraordinary ways, and you can attain masterful results just through making some slight alterations in the means by which you make contact. One of the greatest entrepreneurs and most famous Dallasites in history, Mary Kay Ash, understood this basic model better than anyone and built an entire empire on the foundation of this very principle. In her words, “Everyone has an invisible sign around their neck that says, ‘Make me feel important.’”
Although these tips are all common sense, the key is to use them collectively and genuinely – this is the only way the desired goal will be achieved. The power of the written word is futile and will not convey an effective message if it’s copied (and pasted) – it must be created.