Author: Chris Pearson, Partner & Email Marketing Specialist at 3BM
As I transitioned onto Carnivore, I worried that I wouldn’t get enough vitamins or nutrients.
(which I later discovered wasn’t necessary, but you live and you learn, right?)
I started adding supplements to my diet.
I came across this brand and really liked two things about them:
First, how they marketed and sold their products. Low-pressure, high-value education that helped people understand WHY these supplements would help THEM reclaim their health and vitality.
The “What’s in it for me?” factor is super high in their copy and messaging.
Second, their products represent and stick to a philosophy and set of values. The value proposition beyond taking a few pills every morning is what reeled me in to give them a try. There’s a “high power,” if you will, at work beyond our understanding, and if we are to tap into that “power,” then it means we have to do things a certain way to support our bodies.
Sure, that can sound a little woo-woo, but…
This brand does a great job and selling and marketing with a philosophy and set of values I can get behind, which lead me to give them a go.
And this is why I decided to break down the Review Request Email from:
Heart & Soil is on a mission to help people reclaim their health and vitality.
They follow the wisdom of our ancestors and offer nose-to-tail supplement products.
Here’s what Heart & Soil has to say on their Our Story page:
“Our ancestors were physically active in their 70’s! Overall, they were healthier and stronger than we are today. What was their secret? Eating animals nose to tail.”
Rules: The Email Muse
Each week, I venture through the marketing wilderness to find highly-effective ecommerce sales emails… and I shine a light on what made them work.
My goal with this weekly tangle with the email muse is to teach you strategies and tactics you can use with your emails.
Where do I find these magical electronic pieces of mail? My inbox, mostly, since I’m signed up to lists that I want to be on. I also take suggestions from readers who have a stellar email they’d like to share.
Did you get an email recently that made you smile, your eyes tear up, or flat out gut punched you? I want to see it.
Forward the email to me at (chris at threebeaconmarketing dot com) with a brief note about what you liked about it. If I choose to break it down, I’ll give you a shoutout and link back to your site.
And no forwarding me your own emails. That’s the only rule.
Let’s get started.
Subject Line: Casual and curiosity driven
This reads like something a friend would ask you at a backyard barbecue:
This subject line is casual and is dripping with curiosity.
First, it reads like a friend asking you about something you tried for 30 days to see how it would go.
Second, you’ve got the two question prompt that gets your brain trying to figure out what Paul Saladino, MD is talking about, which creates a ton of curiosity to click and find out.
And, this being a review request email, your brain may already be guessing at the answer to those questions, which…
Ratchets up curiosity to click and find out, even more.
This opens a loop for the reader that they want to close, which also drives them to click.
Dr. Saladino and Radical Health
Dr. Saladino gets it right, using his name in the “from name” field:
Dr. Saladino uses his first and last name plus his credential as the “from name.” This does two things. Keeps things “one-to-one” and reminds the reader who they’re about to give their time to.
We’re all inundated with emails, messages, texts, and more, begging, persuading, and coercing us for our attention.
How do you cut through all that noise?
Get personal. Send one-to-one. And keep things human.
This “speaking to the crowd” through an email is dead. Email is assumed by the reader a one-to-one medium, so treat it that way.
Sure, we’re sending emails to a list of hundreds-of-thousands of people, but…
Writing your emails as if you’re speaking to one, specific person, is a “secret” most brands ignore and/or get wrong with their marketing.
Most people ignore billboards along the highway, right?
But they don’t ignore an email from a friend they talk to weekly.
Be the friend in their inbox, helping them out.
Opening Line: Name + Statement
The “opening line” of this email does a few things:
Dr. Saladino uses my name to call me out, which keeps things personal.
And then gets right to the point. No fluff. Which keeps me reading to find out WHY he asked me the questions in the subject line.
I have my guesses about WHY he sent me this email, but…
I still am curious to see if I guessed correctly.
This is called “anticipation,” and it’s used in everything from novels, to movies, to marketing, and in courting an intimate partner.
Anticipation is knowing something is going to happen, guessing what it may be, hoping that it’s what you want, yearning to be right, and then holding onto that feeling long enough to create pressure.
When that pressure is released, anticipation turns into relief or regret.
Regret is when the promise of a great release fails (aka clickbait)
Relief is when the release is satisfactory (not even what you want, but good enough to warrant the anticipation).
Creating anticipation in your readers starts with promising them something they want OR creating curiosity around a topic they’re interested in learning more about.
How you get them to “build pressure” is up to you…
Product and Reason Why
There is an image of the product (not shown here) plus the these two lines of copy:
They include an image of the product I purchased, plus they keep things casual…
“We’re wondering… how’s it been working for you?”
Casual like a friend at a barbecue.
The image (not shown here) and the copy after the opener gives the reader the “reason why” Dr. Saldino is in their inbox. It also starts to close the loop on the questions from the subject line. It asks the question from the subject line again, signaling to the reader’s brain that they’re about to get the answer. This keeps their attention.
Major Objection to Answering, “How’s it been working for you?”
This “objection handling” is brilliant by Dr. Saladino:
Since people do respond differently to the products, Dr. Saladino addresses that concern/objection right out front.
Whether you felt it day one or it took a month to feel results, that’s OK.
He reassures the customer that no matter what you felt, the result you got, or where you’re at in your journey…
Dr. Saladino and his team are here to help.
They go on to share how, next…
Helping the Customer See Their Progress
If people don’t see or feel like they’re making progress, they’ll start doubting the process.
Dr. Saladino helps address this common hurdle:
Dr. Saladino calls me to action so we can keep track of my progress while on the product.
He’s addressing the big “hurdle” in supplements and diets… it’s hard to see progress when you don’t know what to measure or look for.
This CTA in the review request helps remind me that I have made progress and that the product works. All I have to do is take a photo to see it.
Transition Into Asking for the Review
A simple, straightforward transition into the review request:
Dr. Saladino transitions into asking the customer to share their results from the picture CTA.
He’s taken me, the reader, through the mental process of going from, “Yes, I did buy that,” to “I’d love to share my positive results with you.”
He navigates the two main objections to leaving a review:
- Does it work? (skepticism)
- Did it work for me? (cynicism)
Many people believe they have nothing to say in reviews, which means they won’t respond.
This email, so far, has also encouraged those who may not speak up to do so, since they do have potential results that are one photo away.
Reasons to Leave a Review
Dr. Saladino helps the reader see why leaving a review is about more than their own results:
When I leave a review, I get to:
- Spread the word = social.
- Helps other customers = helpful.
- Buy better products for me, the customer = selfish.
These three bullets hit three major psychological triggers for someone to take action.
And just because you’re asking for a review doesn’t mean you stop putting the customer first.
You’re always selling the customer on taking an action that’s beneficial to them AND your brand.
Getting them to leave a review is turning this customer’s experience into a sales asset you can use later, but…
It also helps the customer, because it creates an opportunity for them to feel great for choosing your product in the first place.
The Final Line: “… so we can help troubleshoot the issue.”
This is a great way to position your supplement brand:
Dr. Saladino ends by mentioning that if you’re not seeing results, we’ll help troubleshoot the issue.
Why is this important?
Instead of saying, we’ll give you a refund and infer that the brand doesn’t believe in its product, Dr. Saladino offers to help you figure out why you’re not getting results because the product works. It may take a little tweaking to do so.
This is a positive way to say, we’re here to help until you get the result, instead of kicking a potential non-customer out the door to never talk to or sell to again.
Remember, email is all about retention. Keep the existing revenue in your business, as well as grow existing customers’ lifetime values.
The one hiccup in this email:
The sign off for this email is the one thing I’d suggest changing or testing.
It signs off as, “The Heart & Soil Team,” but…
The email’s from name is “Paul Saladino, MD.”
The email itself starts off super casual and low-pressure, but this sign off confused me a bit.
Is this email from Dr. Saladino, OR is it from the team.
I’d recommend changing this sign off to: Paul Saladino, MD
This way, things feel congruent from the from-name to the sign off, wrapping up the email as a note from Dr. Saladino.
The Postscript Review Request
This is a review request email, right?
Where’s the review request?
They put the review request in the P.S. to extend the email but also make it look like an afterthought and break up copy.
The other part I love about this review request is that it offers guidance on how to write a review.
The questions are great, because most people have no idea how to write a positive review.
They sure as hell know how to write a negative one, so guiding their positive words toward a great review is gold, here.
If you’re not using this type of “leave me a review” framework, then you’re missing out on a ton of great reviews from happy, willing customers.
These reviews are sales assets you can use to convert more subscribers into buyers, as well as buyers into loyal customers.
If you’re not collecting reviews, I’d highly recommend you get that piece of your business setup, asap.
What You Learned
That was a monster of a breakdown.
Glad you stuck it out with me.
Here’s the tl;dr of what you learned today:
- Keep your emails personal and casual, even with serious subjects.
- Use your first name as the from name to test to see how your audience responds.
- Cut any and all “throat clearing” at the beginning of review request emails. Get to the point.
- Whether you’re asking for a review or selling a $50,000 pole barn, your customers have objections to taking the action you request. Address the major objections with your copy, head on.
- Find a natural transition into the CTA from the body copy. A choppy transition can pull the reader out of focus and scare them away from finishing the email.
- Again, “reasons why” are persuasive, if you make them about how your customer will benefit.
- Keep congruence between your from name and sign off name. It’s small on the page, but it’s huge in the reader’s mind.
- Share questions your customers can answer, so they write better reviews for your brand.
- Book a call with 3BM to see if it makes sense to work together.
- Go shop Heart & Soil products now.