5 Tricks to Writing Better Emails - Christine Kane

One of my peeps just posted on Facebook that she’s about to host her 10th (tenth!) Vision Board Workshop in less than a year.  People were inspired. They commented and asked how she’s had so many successful workshops.  Here’s what she wrote:

So yes, I give my students a complete pack of promo emails all written – every single word – by me.   It makes it easy on them.  They can plug and play without having to learn the art of writing the perfect email.

Time and time again, those emails get sign-ups.


Well, neither you or I have time to turn this into a copywriting lesson.

So what if I just give you 5 tricks to help you get better responses to your emails…whether you want people to sign up for your workshop, or you want people in your neighborhood to volunteer for recycling day?

Cool?  Here goes…


Trick #1 –  Write like you talk. 

It’s freaky.

You can tell people about your services and their problems until the cows come home.

But the moment it comes time to put pen to paper (or fingertips to keyboard), everything shuts down.

Suddenly, you become corporate drone girl.

You stop helping, and you “facilitate.”

You don’t use, you “utilize.”

You write things like, “We can incubate mission-critical methods of empowerment.”

Even YOU want to throw up in your mouth a little bit.

So why do we do this?

Because for some reason, we think writing is supposed to impress people.  But it’s not. Writing is supposed to connect with people.

Impressed people gawk. Connected people click things.

So chill. And write like you’re having a conversation.

Tip:  Record yourself talking, transcribe it and start from there. Your own words. As they flow naturally.  (Do you ever incubate anything when you’re talking? Not unless you raise chickens.)

Be you. Be real.


Trick #2:  Obsess on your Subject Line

The subject line is the key decider if anyone even opens your email, right? So don’t blow it off. Make it compelling.

Compelling, however, doesn’t mean the liberal use of exclamation points.  Don’t shout at people.

Compelling means it grabs, it speaks to a need, it’s personal – and it jumps out through the noise.

I write 10 – 20 subject lines before I pick one. You don’t have to be crazy like me…but if you want your email to get opened, get intentional about your subject line and see how that changes your response rates!


Trick #3 –  Write to a person, not a group

Whether it was back when I was writing songs, or when I’m writing a sales page, or an email, or even this article – I talk to the ONE person on the other end who’s reading it. (I actually imagine a specific person.)

Why is this important?

Well, when we speak to “groups,” we tend to make big bold statements, grandiose and sweeping gestures in order to prove some big something that seems to matter in those big something kind of ways.

Intimacy and connection are lost.

So, imagine a client or friend who thinks you’re the best thing ever. The one whose life you have touched in a big way.  Imagine that person on the other end of your email.  Write to that person.  See what happens.


Trick #4 – Line breaks

I know, I know.  This one’s basic. But OMG, people!

I’m stunned at how many folks still send emails with long-ass paragraphs that no one’s eyes can possibly even begin to read.  And when you consider that most people read emails on their phones, do you honestly think they can take in your ten sentence paragraphs with all of your intellectualizing and opinion-making?  They can’t!  This is why I teach my clients that marketing is service.  It means you always think of the customer experience – or, in this case, the reader experience.  Being a great marketer means you are less selfish and self-centered.

And line breaks are the least selfish thing you can do as a writer of emails.

Tiny paragraphs.

Even one-word paragraphs?


p.s. If you actually made it through that paragraph up there, congratulations. I hated writing it.


Trick #5 – One. Freakin. Thing.

This one falls under the category of “Simple but not Easy.”

When you write an email, think about that ONE thing you want your reader to get. Or the one action you want them to take.

All of the content of that email leads to or is about that one thing.  That’s it.  If they don’t do that one thing, your email wasn’t successful.  “Click here.” “Hit reply.” “Call me now.”    Make it clear, uncomplicated, and easy-to-do.

In fact…here. I’ll model this for you right now.


Answer one of these two questions:

1 – Which of these tricks do you forget to do when you write emails?

2 – At a time when our inboxes are flooded, what makes you open or respond to an email?  (Seriously – have you ever thought about this?  It’ll make you a better writer!)

Share your answers with me in the comments. I’m super curious…

  • Trisha

    Writing like I speak was the biggest email challenge for me to overcome.
    Now it’s kinda fun to do it!

  • Tondy

    I forget to write as I speak, although my speaking is really very wordy and obtuse as well. people have even made fun of me for it. I sometimes struggle to find a balance between being my authentic self to attract my tribe, and dumbing it down for the masses who might be my consumer.

  • Michelle Dawnn

    My English brain goes on as soon as I write an email or ANY social media post. Sometimes I forget to write like I talk to really make that connection.

    Thank you so much for the tips! I ALWAYS open your emails because you give me tangible tasks that I can implement right away.

    Vision Mapping has always been at the forefront of my business but I’ve struggled to make it lucrative. Once I signed up for your course, you started filling in the missing blanks that have held me back. Since then, I’ve done a total rebrand and now working towards opening my own studio where I can coach and have dedicated space for my vision map workshops!

    So keep those emails coming… you’re giving us gold here 🙂 xo

  • Chelsia Berry

    The reason I almost always open your emails is, I want to know what you’re saying. The reason for the times I don’t want to open your email, I know I’m not doing what I’m supposed to.
    Your emails remind me I have an obligation to myself.

  • Adele

    Thanks for the tips.

    I forget to write to one person. It does make the e-mail more personal and easier to be yourself, if you imagine you are speaking to one person. Thanks.

    Subject line? I first look who sent it. From there, subject lines that are short but informative. 5 Tips for…. and then to easily find the 5 tips (I close e-mails if I can’t find the point easily). Thanks.

  • Kimberly Hudson-Grey

    Thank you for these 5 tips.

    I’m always apprehensive writing emails. So, #1 is the one I forget. I sometimes believe my voice isn’t good enough.

    When opening emails I read the ones from friends first, then the others in order of importance.

  • Marian Fish Guinn

    Tip #1 write like I talk

    Thanks- all 5 are great reminders.

  • Bibi

    Love the 5 tips. The one I usually forget is the Subject Line tip. Going forward, will use it as a tool to build connection. Thanks.

  • Carolyn

    I always read your emails, thanks for letting me know why! Your style is so refreshing, I actually look forward to receiving a message. It feels like a friend took a moment to help me through a rough spot in my day. Thank you.

  • Brenda Rose

    This is exactly what I needed this morning. I am icebound in the home office working on this very issue. I have so much that I want to say and I over communicate. Simply thanks, have a blessed day.

  • Jennifer

    Great take away info!
    Thanks much Christine for putting this out there!
    -Love the break up sentence format as you can see. Lol : )
    Learned it from my fiance. He learned it in college from communication and writing 101.
    -I was the huge paragraph texter.
    He’d never have time to read and get back to me in a timely fashion. Now I know why. Ha ha.
    Short sweet and to the point. Love it! So does everyone else I text.
    PS. I might not include the smiley faces though for public read. Right?

  • Karen Richards

    1. I mainly forget writing the email as if I were talking to the person and my paragraphs are too long.
    2. I think I respond to subject lines that tease me a little. I am very curious and have to be careful I don’t click on a carefully written piece of spam!

  • Paulette

    I actually kept your email bolded until today Feb 18th because it peaked my interest and I wanted to check it out.

    I am picky about what I open and normally would delete such emails but your subject said “5 tricks” and my brain said “Oh yeah, here we go, let’s see if this is just general info or really valid actions I can take”.

    So, two days later and reading every word, it worked. I figured if you could get me to open your email your advice has to be top notch….and it is! Thankyou for your insights.

  • Nancy

    I opened this particular email because of the subject line. I continued to read it because you wrote in your own voice which was funny and down to earth. I tend to edit too much so the own voice thing was the tip for me. I also liked that you gave the info right then and there, I didn’t need to go clicking around the world to get 5 simple tips. I clicked because of curiosity and I commented because it was simple, no other complicated steps to go through just to comment. Thank you for the excellent information.

  • Gina Mills

    Hi Christine,
    I wish I could have joined your course but I am not in control of my time as my husband has dementia and I am his sole carer. He is also physically frail so if I can build him up then………
    The idea of a vision board workshop resonates and I
    have the perfect venue for holding them. Maybe a partner who could front for me.
    Your make so much sense and I am grateful for getting so many tips for the future.
    Many thanks

  • Allie Irwin

    Writing 10-20 subject lines is the tip I most need to work on. My open rates are lower than I’d like.

    • Christine Kane

      Hey Allie – Sometimes when something isn’t going well with our marketing – it’s so normal to just kind of close your eyes and hope it works the next time. 🙂 When you get more strategic with your work – it may take time to bring the results or the change – but it’s worth it from a skillset building perspective. So keep me posted on your progress! I think you may see that you get better at it, which means it will get more fun, which means your energy will be more into it, which means people will be more drawn to you… and that’s what I call the “strategy and soul” of having a business! 🙂

  • Sofia jafar

    I have done your Vision Board Pro course. I loved your emails and used them in sequence as suggested. However, my list is the same as before for subsequent workshops. It will be strange to reuse those emails again on the same people.

    • Christine Kane

      Hey Sofia – Try this… try either changing up the subject line of the first email and/or add this opening paragraph: “Hey – My first workshop was a huge success so I’m doing another one! Thought you’d like the opportunity to jump in this time…” See if that works!

  • Sandra Freda

    Thank you Christine,

    You are a true role model of someone singing their own authentic song.

    Love what you do.. and your teaching is awesome!

  • Angella Nunes

    Thank you for your writing tips, Christine.
    In response to your question, I usually go to the messages with a subject heading that grabs me, especially if it came from a sender whose name I recognize.

  • Vanessa Jordan

    That was some awesome information, thanks!
    I can’t wait to check out more of your blog, I need help in all
    of these area’s.
    I love what I do, I love my product, and I want to help others,
    but me communicating that is a totally different story!

    • Christine Kane

      Vanessa – Yes, the communication and clarity (which is really what marketing is) is the hardest part for so many peeps.

  • Ginny

    Hi Christine,

    I do tend to write as I talk, but I think I sometimes get to wordy and lose my focus. I also struggle to pitch it right sometimes, as I am terrible at marketing myself and my time; being really honest here. I have all these ideas, typical creative, but getting interest to commitment can be a tad difficult.

    I tend to read emails on subjects I’m interested in or something uplifting or something with a show of kindness, a positive story.

    Thank you x

    • Christine Kane

      Okay – so Ginny… do this: write what you write as authentically (and rambly) as you want. THEN read it aloud. And challenge yourself to run it over and edit it AT LEAST three times. Cut it by half. And then cut it by half again. Leave ONLY the key phrases. Ask yourself “Is this necessary???” (This was something I got from songwriting. There was so little room for lyrics that didn’t serve the song!)

  • Maggie

    Hi Christine.
    Such a good idea to record what you’re going to write.

    The few blogs I’ve written take me ages cos I keep going over them and refining them (perfectionist!)

    I’m just about to start my Vision Board Pro study.

    Am excited as I love Vision Board workshops and I’ll be very interested to see the headlines you’ve used in the email sequence.

    The headline definitely affects whether I open anything.

    Thanks for all your inspiration.

    Maggie from Tassie 🌼☺

  • Farrah

    I had no idea how to right a good email

  • Leona

    The I don’t always know what to do to have a call to action. I run various course so it’s hard to get a one click option.
    What makes me look at an emai,is something that speaks to me where I’m at. Gives me something for free, interesting, easy, someth8ng that will make my life easier.

    • Christine Kane

      Leona – If you run various courses, and you have to have multiple calls to action – is it possible that you’re not writing your peeps ENOUGH? Like you’re waiting til it all packs up and you’re sending a “digest” versus a conversation/offer?

  • Heather

    I forget #1. The rest is easy, but I write differently than I talk because I tend to stumble over my words.

    But I love what you’re saying and I’m going to try the”record yourself@ tip.

    I open emails about the topic I’m studying at the moment. I like to go with my gut feeling.

    It works for me. I opened yours :).

    Thanks for the tips and reminding me to stop stressing about being “perfect”.

    • Christine Kane

      Heather – Use the recorder for writing anything. It’s a great way to see how naturally your message can come out. Of course, you’ll have to tweak some stuff – but the choices of language are just different when we’re speaking. Thanks!

  • Valerie

    Trick #5 is good for me to remember to keep it simple.

  • Ann Clack

    For me it touches on something that concerns or affects me. My pet peeve is a teaser line that wants you to click to go to a website. My personality just wants the answer….then….if I want more info about it, I’ll click.

  • Heather Michet

    Great titles by known-to-be-valuable-and-worthwhile-to-read writers. In other words, I virtually always read emails composed by folks I’ve already read who have educated me, humored me, or spark me to think or take action. You, Christine, are one of those. Thank you!
    Consistency comes to mind as I answer this question: consistently well written and valuable (to me, the reader) content.

  • Sherry Jurach

    When it comes to opening emails it’s the topic importance, and then the first sentence or paragraph has to grab me or I’m bored and onto the next email.

    • Christine Kane

      Sherry – For me it’s also about who is sending it – and do I want to hear from them. Thanks!