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Learning the Psychological Tricks for a Perfect Email Newsletter

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September 9, 2020

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Psychology is a key tool in human life. But unfortunately, most of us don’t know about its usage and power it has when it comes to email newsletters.

When newbies in the digital marketing field are told that email marketing is a highly effective form of marketing today, they get surprised. But it’s the truth.

Email marketing has a big share of contribution when it comes to developing the brand. May it be an ordinary blog or a multi-nation ecommerce store, email marketing stands as a pillar of any venture’s success.

No doubt social media is ruling the life of people today but email though being an old technique is still leading when you want to drive traffic, advertise goods or generate engagement. This proves the popular saying “old is gold” is true.

Email newsletter is the base of email marketing. It acts as a basic tool to communicate with your audience, deliver message and practice your humour. Emails can also be considered as a product that you need to foster similar to other goods that are advertised.

Therefore, you should treat email newsletters properly. You will find several guidelines and tips on creating one to make your marketing campaign a success. Today, let’s consider some of the psychological tricks that are timely tested.

Using Psychology in Marketing for Enhanced Performance

Psychology in marketing helps in getting more conversions, sales, and grows the complete effectiveness of your marketing efforts. However, let’s study the real impact of optimizing your email campaigns with the help of marketing psychology.

With the help of social proof, it will be easy to track one’s purchases decisions based on the experiences of others and this will bring in more sales. The numbers are self-explanatory. As per BrightLocal, averagely, consumers read 10 reviews prior to deciding about doing business with a brand and 85% of people trust online customer reviews more than they would trust their friend’s recommendation.

If you are successful in boosting your reviews and displaying the positive experiences of your customers in your email campaigns, you will bring more people into your sales funnel.

Similarly, reciprocity is one of the most powerful psychological tactics in marketing and has shown exceptional growth in the sales. It is the concept based on “you help me, I will help you” and is found to me much effective. As per an American supermarket chain, offering free samples lead to an increase in sales by up to 20x. Similar concept can be used in your email marketing campaigns for boosting sales and bringing more customers.

Therefore, it is clear that when you use psychology in marketing, it can bring great results for your business.

Remember there are no specific rules for using each marketing psychology concept but if they are used in a way that matches your brand’s style, they will surely help you in growing sales, getting more leads and enhancing your brand’s image.

Let’s now take a look at the five psychological tools that are used for email newsletters and have been successful.

FOMO

FOMO is one of the popular psychological tricks that is used in email newsletters. FOMO stands for Fear Of Missing Out and has been used globally. When there are big days in marketing campaigns such as Halloween, Black Friday, etc. you can use FOMO. You may also use it during short events like a flash sale. Though people understand the urgency of these days’ sale, they can get easily tricked because they fear of getting the offer missed during these big days.

FOMO also combines another psychological trick of scarcity. The combination of the two can easily trap more clients and encourage them to buy your products and services. The reason is that they think it is scarce, and will get finished immediately. One more trick is to offer reduced prices. You can use several terms for this such as almost sold out, it is your last chance, gets a grab, limited offers available, and get yours today.

The best example of FOMO is the below email newsletter sent by MilesWeb with the subject-line “TODAY ONLY: 80% OFF on Your Web Hosting Plan!”. Reading this will create a feeling of urgency among the subscribers and they might quickly sign up for the plan so that they don’t miss this offer.

The Magical Effect of Words “Sale” and “Free”

“Sale” and “Free” are the two most powerful terms when it comes to running marketing and sales campaigns. These terms are similar to magnets and naturally capture the attention of potential clients. When these terms are used properly, you can sell goods to even those customers that don’t want to buy. Thus, their smartly application can lead to wonders.

People are habitual to annual events that offer great discounts. For this FOMO can act as a powerful tool in an email newsletter and offer you high conversions

You can use the words “Sale” and “Free” in subject lines as well as the copy. Though you won’t get more freedom to express yourself in subject line, but it will surely help you increase your open rates. You can express the offer in a better way in a copy. Headlines are basically read as “Free Shipping,” “Huge Sale,” “BOGOF,” etc.

Check the below example, Flipkart’s newsletter about big saving days with the subject-line “Big Savings Coming Soon”. The words “big saving” create a feeling of getting a lot of money saved by purchasing through this sale. This leads increase in sales.

Reciprocity

It sounds to be a bit tricky but is much refined. Unlike FOMO, it is new to many and this is what makes it a superpower. A gesture of offering something for free is called as reciprocity. This creates an excitement among the customers and makes them feel obligated.

It is a human nature to feel about returning the favor. Therefore, companies can use this psychological trick when sending email newsletters. Companies can favor their potential clients by offering a free sample and then except something in return. You can exhibit reciprocity in the form of gifts in the email newsletters, such as, grab the best gift this holiday, buy one and get one free, etc.

Spotify allows to get the app for free and this is what helps it to get more downloads.

Use of Colors

Similar to FOMO, color psychology is one of the old-school hacks that is applicable for email marketing as well as for print design, web design, advertising, and other industries. The motive is that every color represents its range of emotions. But, there is a catch. Sometimes color can be taken in a different way. Let’s check an example to understand this better.

Red color is especially used in visual identities of beverages or foods and represents hunger. We all have seen KFC, McDonald’s and Coca-Cola have red color in their brand’s visual representations such as banners. Basically, it creates a temptation. But when used in web designs, it triggers other associations. It acts as a sign of closure or something that needs to be rejected and not at all tempting. Hence, in terms of email marketing you should be alert while using colors.

Don’t know which colors can be used in email newsletters? At, first it is blue. This is because blue always represents something good and is related to agreement. The next is green, avoid forest green though. Use light, bright and playful green. The last one is any brand color or a holiday-themed color which can be red, purple or pink. If you use these colors in brand identity or event, it can surely attract them.

Check the colors used by the food delivery app Swiggy. They use blue, purple and orange colors in their newsletters.

Related: Picking the Best Colors for Effective Web Design

Exclusivity

This is something loved by all and want to feel special. When you establish a sense of exclusivity, it is an appeal to people’s vanity. But you need to play with it smartly because you can go wrong and offend your customers rather than pleasing them. The examples of tried and tested as well as approved choices for this such as “Invitation Only,” “Members Only,” “Exclusively for You,” “Become an Insider,” “Exclusive Offer.” With these phrases, people get the feeling of “VIPs.”

It is good idea to create an exclusive membership and sponsor it in your newsletter, group your subscribers and also offer special discounts for a particular group or send an invitation card with any shopping deal on the subscriber’s birthday.

The newsletter by SpiceClub with a subject-line “Turn your flights into rewards – Join SpiceClub” gives a feeling of VIP as they have this offer only for the members of SpiceClub.

Persuasive Language

One can’t talk about the psychological hacks for email marketing without looking at your email copy. There isn’t any exact science involved behind email copywriting but there are some things you should avoid. Ensure that when you create an email, it is appealing and the language is attention-seeking. Making bold claims in your content would also prove fruitful. But understand that there is a fine line that separates persuasive email copy and spam.

The language used in your email’s copy should be motivating for your subscribers to continue the interaction with your brand. It should take them further to the sales funnel. Keep your emails light and add content that creates a positive feeling among the readers. Consider each email as a scene that needs to be set with sensory language, casual appearance but respects your subscribers.

HDFC reduces the stress of the subscriber with its subject-line “Freedom from Higher Home Loan EMIs”. The bank is making bold claim of relieving the stress of home loan EMIs and it indicates that they are really going to help their customers with the EMIs.

Framing

With this concept you get a chance to show your product or brand’s “best side.” But ensure that you don’t mislead your customers, instead use language and content that represents your strengths. Framing can be used in the same way as you represent yourself in an interview. Rather than saying that you are not the most organized person, you may say that you have a unique way of managing your projects and that gives you a different perspective. So, when you explain your brand and products, you need to do exactly the same thing.

Basically, it means represent your product in the most interesting and valuable way possible.

For example, suppose you provide cloud storage service. This means speed of your network is what your users will be interested in. Imagine that an average user takes between 5-10 minutes to upload a 2GB file. So, rather than making a statement as “uploading a 2GB file may take up to 10 minutes,” reframe your message in a positive way as, “upload a 2GB file within 10 minutes.”

Instead of just sending an email, Netflix asks its customers to return and tells them what they are missing. This has helped it to re-engage the audience by including just a single button with the valuable things customers can benefit with, if they rejoin Netflix.

Related: {Ultimate Guide} – How to Create an Email Newsletter for Quick Subscription

Email Newsletter Psychology Takeaways

These are just a few psychological hacks and examples, but these cut down to what will work for your brand. Audiences differ from each other and keep different expectations from the brands they interact with. But below are four general takeaways that you should remember when creating or updating your next email campaign.

  • Use a combination of tactics. Though each concept has been explained independently they do not exist in a vacuum. There are a few psychological marketing tricks to be used in every email that you send. Marketing and psychology need to go hand-in-hand in each of your emails for the best results. You will find unlimited combinations and variants of any email, so don’t hesitate to try different approaches.
  • Keep your emails refined. You can fine-tune each email psychology and make it too saled-oriented. But no one would like an email that pushes one to buy. For some people it would be insulting while others won’t even open the email. So, while using psychological hacks, be customer-centric. Tools such as FOMO, exclusivity, and persuasive language are wonderful but make sure they add value and bring leads through the funnel gently, not with forcing to purchase.
  • Display your strengths. Marketing aims at making more sales, and enhancing your brand for making it more attention-seeking is a wonderful way of doing just that. You can use reframing and reciprocity to enhance your brand’s image and gain more leads. Make sure that you display your best side without taking your audience on the wrong path.
  • Repeat. When you use psychology in marketing, it does not mean making a change to an email template and ignoring it. You can steadily improve your emails and monitor their changes in performance as time passes. Use different colors and add new images and text. Check if your email service offers you detailed statistics about campaign performance as this will prove to be helpful. Try different options as you continue improving your emails.

Hope that these tricks will help you to create a perfect email newsletter. Do let us know if they have proven to be effective. In case, you find any trick missing in this post make sure, you mention it in the comment below.

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Pallavi is a Digital Marketing Executive at MilesWeb and has an experience of over 4 years in content development. She is interested in writing engaging content on business, technology, web hosting and other topics related to information technology.

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