How to Stand Out in the Information Overload Society: Email Marketing Part 1

Image courtesy of State Farm's photostream

Image courtesy of State Farm’s photostream

Email has become the bane of modern society’s collective existence, as we’re all overwhelmed with it. It’s hard to believe that there was a time when we got excited to have something, anything in our inbox… So much so, that AOL made an auditory declaration of joy, “You’ve Got Mail!”

Think we’re in the Information Age, sorry, you’re wrong. That ship sailed about ten years ago. No one, and I mean no one, in 2015 needs more information.

As a matter of fact, we need less. We’re drowning and we need help figuring a way out of information, filtering information so we don’t hastily delete something meaningful. How to find what matters and what is junk. We’re addicts, all of us. And we need help… badly, now admit it. It’s the first step.

That being said:

E-mail has the highest ROI of marketing channels, producing $57 for every dollar spent. (via Oglivy One Worlwide)

So, given all of that, how in the heck can we use email effectively from a business standpoint if everyone is so overwhelmed? How do we stand a chance if we have so much competing for our customer’s attention? Just remember that we have a problem, we have an addiction, and we want the good stuff.

What Makes the Good Stuff in Email?

The good stuff really boils down to copywriting. There’s a reason that TMZ now breaks major news stories before the networks. There’s a reason that the National Enquirer is still at every checkout stand you pass, while newspapers go out of business.

Want a crash course in writing copy that sells, read TMZ and National Enquirer headlines – those are undisputable copywriting chops. They sell; no doubt about that. They draw their readers in and force them to pay attention.

The reasons are formulary, but it boils down to good copy and the ability to tell good stories. And while these celeb gossip mags lay it on thick in the hyperbole department, there are plenty of useful takeaways that can be applied to things not related to a Kardashian, Elvis or aliens.

Just remember, corporate speak is boring and no one cares. This is the biggest offense in the email marketing world. Secondly, entertainment is BIG business for a reason. People want to be entertained and drawn into a storyline. Thirdly, we’re all media companies, whether you like it or not — time to get good at it or else suffer the consequences.

In my next post (part deux in this series) I’ll actually outline the six specific steps you can take to infuse your email with the kind of salaciousness that would cause Harvey Levin to open and take notice. Stay tuned, as that post will be live shortly.


  1. Hi Tony,

    Great article! We are publishing an article on similar topic next week. We have a Marketing Workout plan to help kick start an email outreach program within 30 days. I’ll send it over to you if you would like to include in your series.


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