Join thousands of weekly readers and receive practical marketing advice for FREE.
MarketingSherpa's Case Studies, New Research Data, How-tos, Interviews and Articles

Enter your email below to join thousands of marketers and get FREE weekly newsletters with practical Case Studies, research and training, as well as MarketingSherpa updates and promotions.


Please refer to our Privacy Policy and About Us page for contact details.

No thanks, take me to MarketingSherpa

First Name:
Last Name:
Mar 19, 2002
Blog Post

How to write a better email newsletter summary & drive more readers to your site

SUMMARY: No summary available.
How long should your email newsletter article copy be if you are trying to get readers to click to your site for the whole thing? The answer is: probably longer than you think.

I used to think I could just send out an enticing headline and folks would click. Then I tested the same headline plus one terse line of explanation. Then a reader emailed me saying, "Anne could you give me more details so I know if a particular story is worth my clicking to?" So I started to write longer and longer. Now some summaries in our weekly summaries letter (SherpaWeekly) are up to three short paragraphs long.

The other thing I learned over time is NOT to do the old first-hundred-words-of-the-article routine with an elipsis (...) as the summary. Yes, it's easier than writing an all-new summary, but it's not nearly as effective. You need to tell you reader exactly what they'll get when they click through, and why it's important to them. Here's a live example:

Version #1. First words of actual story using ellipsis tactic:

When Singapore Airlines decided to invest in a major advertising campaign to celebrate its new route from Singapore to Chicago last summer, the airline bought a multi-channel media package from AOL/Time Warner including TV ads on CNN, print ads in Fortune, Time's Asian edition, and other related offline media...

Version #2. Summary of story written explicitly for newsletter clicks:

This Case Study is a must-read for all business-to-consumer marketers trying to build an opt-in email database. Interactive ad agency execs, who are trying to convince clients to invest online, will also thoroughly appreciate how an online campaign, that was a "little add-on" to a big traditional media buy, ended up making a giant impact on the client-side.

Our favorite bit is when the agency involved predicted how successful the campaign would be. They were waaay off
See Also:

Post a Comment

Note: Comments are lightly moderated. We post all comments without editing as long as they
(a) relate to the topic at hand,
(b) do not contain offensive content, and
(c) are not overt sales pitches for your company's own products/services.

To help us prevent spam, please type the numbers
(including dashes) you see in the image below.*

Invalid entry - please re-enter

*Please Note: Your comment will not appear immediately --
article comments are approved by a moderator.

Improve Your Marketing

Join our thousands of weekly Case Study readers.

Enter your email below to receive MarketingSherpa news, updates, and promotions:

Note: Already a subscriber? Want to add a subscription?
Click Here to Manage Subscriptions

Best of the Week:
Marketing case studies and research

Chart Of The Week

B2B Marketing

Consumer Marketing

Email marketing

Inbound Marketing

SherpaStore Alerts


We value your privacy and will not rent or sell your email address. Visit our About Us page for contact details.