How to ensure that every email to teachers really brings the response you want.


Talking about failure in a note to potential customers is, according to every marketing book I’ve ever read (and probably quite a few I have not read, but since I have not read them I can’t be quite sure), the very last thing one should ever do.

Positivity is good, negativity bad.

But if one has a process that is not working as well as one would like, one has to find out why, and so at this point a certain amount of negative thinking is indeed required.

This is as true in advertising as it is with filling the kitchen sink or starting up your car.  If things are not working one asks, is the tap running, is the plug in (I speak here of the sink, obviously), is the battery flat, has the automatic digital system decided there is a fault and gone into lockdown mode?

You might recall (if you have a very good memory, and if I managed to grab your attention towards the end of last week) that I recently sent you a little piece about emails that don’t bring in the success that one might wish for.

My suggestion was that there are only four reasons for an advert not doing well: the email list that is used, the method of transmission of the email, the text and layout of the email, and the text and layout of the landing page on your website.

Now having sent out my suggestion I have had a reply which said that I had missed out a possibility – that no one wants the product at the price you are charging.

I must admit that in writing my piece I was assuming that we were talking about selling a product or service that teachers could be persuaded to buy at a price they were willing to pay.   And yes, if you are selling nuclear power stations, 70 feet tall pine trees, or a detailed review of the sewage system of London in the 15th century, there could be a difficulty.

But even so, I have found over the years that if one has a product or service that could be of use to teachers (which probably cuts out the nuclear power station and the pine trees, but possibly leaves the review of London’s sewage problems, 1425-1482), it is normally possible to sell it via email, if one follows the four rules.

Such emails need to go to the personal email address of the teacher, and the email needs to be written in a particular way that engages the reader and doesn’t shout out commands about the discount and the need to buy now.

What’s more, the text and design of the email and of the landing page have to work in a very particular way, which unfortunately is not what common sense would dictate.

Plus the message has to be sent via a server based in Britain, which is recognised as a sender of legitimate emails, rather than spam.

Now, one interesting reply I had to my last email on this topic was that “I don’t have time to do all that”.  And that indeed is why is here. We can offer advice, we can, if you wish, write and design the emails and your landing page, supply the email list of teachers’ personal email addresses, and send the email to schools via an appropriate server.

That service is known as Velocity, named after the Greek god Velos, the god of having someone else do it all for you*.  There is more information here.

But if you prefer to be involved in the processes yourself, we can give our thoughts on your email and web page text and layout free of charge, and then undertake the emailing process for you.  If you would like to talk about this further please call 01604 880 927.

Finally if you would like to send over a sample of what you are thinking of sending out and invite us to comment, again free of charge, please do email

Tony Attwood

*I have just been told that there was no Greek god Velos, but that Velocity comes from the Latin “velocitas”.  Its first recorded use in English was 1550. I personally think that is a shame, and that my explanation is much more fun, but these days my editor won’t let me get away with anything.

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