I’d like to always start from a blank page, but I’m often asked to work from something that’s already drafted. It’s the closest a copywriter gets to high-octane rescue missions.
Just recently, a client forwarded me a prospecting email that had been written by someone in-house – but, even though the writer knew the business inside out, it was lacking.
The client couldn’t tell me what was wrong. It wasn’t easy to spot where the copy fell down. It was just something you could feel.
They said it needed ‘the Stephen Marsh touch’ (which made me feel like a giggly schoolgirl).
But it also made me think about all those in-house marketing people putting together emails and not being able to see what was going wrong.
I like being helpful (and I’m particularly helpful if you book me). So here’s what I do when I’m faced with some email copy that’s not working – and how in-house writers can make their emails more interesting, engaging and high-performing.