logo_wildmindPart One:  The Easy Please-y

I started my marketing journey as a social media manager/intern.  While social media can be fun and effective, it can also be extremely time consuming and yield only minor results.  Imagine my joy, then, upon discovering that you can get results that would take a month of social media management just by sending out a few well crafted emails.

In today’s study, I’ll show you one of the most effective emails I’ve ever sent, tell you what worked, and what didn’t work so well.  The main thing to remember about email marketing is that you have got to respect your reader’s time.  Say what you have to say and say it quick.  While the format I’m about to show you is longer than most folks care to read, the actions I ask the recipient to take total no more than five minutes of their time if they do them all.

I call this email format The Easy-Please-y.  Take a look:

Dear ______,

I hope the post we did for you folks rallied up some extras for your shoot. I wonder if you wouldn’t mind returning the favor by taking a moment to do one of the following to help us spread the word about Wild Mind Film Camp:

Share this post on your facebook page:

Re-Tweet this: https://twitter.com/WildMindCamp/status/294898557679435776

Forward this blurb to your “Wild Minded” Filmmaker friends:

Doug Pray and Peter J. Vogt, in association with TheFilmSchool, are proud to introduce their second annual Wild Mind Film Camp, an 11-day intensive master class for documentary filmmaking in the Washington Cascades.

Wild Mind Film Camp is a hands-on, in-depth learning experience for ten developing professionals and inspired nonfiction filmmakers who want to dramatically improve their documentary skills and knowledge.  Each day features a mix of classes, workshops, and live production in a supportive community atmosphere.

Due to the intimate nature of the program the camp is limited to 10-students, with selection based on the strength of their previous work and statement of intent.

Wild Mind Film Camp runs this summer from July 17th – 28th.

Interested filmmakers can apply by visiting the website: WildMindFilmCamp.com

Any of the above actions will help greatly in spreading the word about Wild Mind Film Camp. I appreciate your time spent on this, and as always, I’m happy to return the favor. Drop me a line any time you need something.

At your service,
Seth Rasmussen

The links in the above email direct your reader right to Facebook and Twitter, where they can do you a big favor with one click.  If they have a mailing list set up, the third option is only marginally more time consuming.  The response to these emails was overwhelming, and in one week of sending these to the right people we went from zero applicants to fifteen.

Why did this email work?

Mainly because I had already done similar favors for others in the film-making community.  I sent a similar letter to Alumni of the program, and every single one of them came through with a post.  You know who you’ve helped in the past, and if you’ve done your influencer analysis, you know who to help in the future, so you can call on them for favors like these.  The other reason it worked is for the reason I cited earlier.  It respects the reader’s time.  They can read the email, click on two things, and forget about it.  Everybody wins.

What could have worked better?

The longest portion of the email is by far the least effective, so feel free to leave it out.  Later, we’ll discuss press releases in all their glory, but for a short email release like the one above, there’s something I forgot to do:

Put the link at the top of the email body.  

In my version above, I left the link towards the end.  The end result of all this marketing is to drive traffic to the site and encourage applications, so it does me no favors to drop the link in the part of the email that the least people will read.


Keep is simple, keep it short.  Do favors for others and make it easy for them to reciprocate.

As always, leave your questions in the comments, and thanks for reading.