This is part 2 of my Copywriting Codex series about my three favorite Disney characters. For those of you who missed it, part 1 is here.
Today’s Copywriting Codex is about Donald Duck. He’s one of my favorite Disney characters, maybe because he finds himself in ridiculous situations, and does the best he can (like the time he tried to set up a home computer).
Donald wears a hat and no pants. He gets angry, and I mean a lot.
One of my favorite things that Donald says is,
“What’s the big idea?”
This is huge in copywriting, and it can be taken a lot of different ways (it’s usually applied to longer pieces, like sales letters).
But it can be used for emails too. Here are two ways that work well:
What you want to accomplish. Every email you write should have an overall purpose, whether you’re trying to inform, promote a product or service (whether yours or a client’s), educate, or something else. These purposes can be blended, too. But deciding what you want to do before you sit down to write focuses you. Think of each message as the piece of a puzzle.
What the email itself will be about. This works for any niche, but here’s an example. You want to inform your subscribers about dog-grooming. Do you put everything you know about grooming that you’ve learned over your fifteen years in the business?
Not likely. Subscribers would be overwhelmed trying to pick out what to do first, second, and so on; or what did and didn’t apply to them.
Better to stick with one overall idea, and use more messages to flesh things out. You might want to start with what supplies would be needed. And follow that with a message about small breeds vs. large breeds, and so on.
Emails can do a lot of different things, but deciding what this message will do today is what you want to focus on, before you zoom out for the big picture.
Tomorrow, we’ll wrap up this Codex series with the third member of Disney’s memorable trio.
Until next time,