How To Write Emails To Sell: Email Marketing Strategy

By Scott Voelker •  Updated: 04/27/21 •  10 min read

If you have an email list for your business, chances are you’re thinking about your email marketing strategy.

One of the most common questions we get is, “How can I write emails to sell?” and that’s what we’re going to dive into.

Today, we’ll break down the email marketing strategy that’s been working for us for years, and is still getting us sales in 2021.

Whether you sell physical products, digital products, affiliate offers, services, it doesn’t matter. If you have anything that you can sell to your email list, this strategy has been proven to work time and time again.

The best part? 

It’s just five straightforward emails that you can adapt for whatever you’re selling.

By now, we’ve got this down to a science. We’ll lay out the entire Monday through Friday sequence with examples.

After that, we’ll show you the trick we added to this strategy last year which has increased our open rate by 5% to 10%!

We all know that if we can get more opens on our emails, we’re probably going to SELL more. 

(That trick is the last thing we’ll add to the emails, so make sure you read to the end!)

Start With Goodwill

Before we dive into our email marketing strategy, there’s something we need to mention. We’re assuming that you’ve been emailing your list at least once per week with valuable, useful content.

If you’re NOT emailing your list yet, you need to start there. 

The reason it's important to build goodwill with your list first is because you'll end up depleting some of that goodwill after you run a promotion.

You can’t just dump a promotion on people and expect them to buy. A much more effective strategy is to build a relationship with your audience BEFORE you sell.

Firstly, you want your email list to know, like, and trust you. And secondly, you'll end up depleting some of that goodwill after you run a promotion.

There are many ways to build up that relationship. However, we’re not diving into that today. If you haven’t been emailing your list, start with our tips for building goodwill first. 

Create An Exclusive Offer

Assuming you’ve already built up some goodwill with the people on your email list, the first step for writing emails to sell is to create an exclusive offer just for them.

Your offer has to be good. Give them some type of incentive to buy what you’re selling. It could be a discount, a limited quantity, or a bonus.

For best results, make sure your offer is only available for a limited time. The deadline creates a sense of urgency. A great example of this is to run an exclusive 50% off sale for five days only.

Don’t be tempted to skip the deadline! Deadlines work. 

First, set a clear offer and a clear deadline. Then, we'll build on that offer as we move along this email marketing strategy.

Write Emails To Sell

Here are the five emails we use to sell:

Writing emails to sell is not hard. All you need to do is deliver the right information at the right time. Let’s dive into what you’ll write for each email.

Email #1: Awareness

Set the stage. Your first email should let them know an awesome offer is coming.

This is a mistake that a lot of people make. They don’t let their email list know something is coming. 

They just say, “Hey, I’ve got a flash sale. Want to buy something? Great, here it is. There’s a discount for the next two days.” And that’s it. They just send one email, maybe two. 

The Awareness email is crucial because it builds anticipation. It lets people know something is coming a few days in advance.

Now, if you’re selling something higher ticket, you’re really going to want to leverage this first email. Therefore, you’ll want to take a little more time to lead up to the promotion, so send it a little further in advance.

Example Email

Hey, I’ve been working on the Ultimate Bass Fishing Guide for the past three weeks. It’s almost ready. I can’t wait! I’m going to share it with you next week and I’m going to give you an exclusive discount. 

Email #2: Offer And Deadline

The second email is your big announcement! 

Let people know that your exclusive offer is now available. This will be sent on the first day of your promotion.

When writing this email, be clear about what your offer is and set a clear deadline or let people know exactly when your offer expires.

Example Email

Hey, it’s ready! The Ultimate Bass Fishing Guide is now ready and I’m going to give you 75% off what it’s going to be listed for when we offer it to the public. 

You’re going to get it at a discount because you’re one of my loyal subscribers and I want to do something cool for our Bass Fishing community.

This is only going to be available until Friday at 9:00 PM Eastern Time.

Email #3: Reminder Of The Deadline

Just a few days into your promotion, you’ll send this third email which reminds people of the deadline.

Again, this email isn’t complicated to write. In fact, we just tweak Email #2 a bit. 

We edit the first few lines to explain that we’re resending this email in case they missed it. That’s it. Simply make the offer again and give them a reminder of the deadline.

Email #4: Deadline (AM)

The purpose of your fourth email is to let them know that the deadline is approaching. You’ll send this email in the morning on the final day of your promotion.

It’s really critical that this one gets sent out in the morning. We send our Deadline email between 7:00 AM and 8:00 AM Eastern Time.

Example Email

Subject Line: Deadline

Hey, I just wanted to check in with you and let you know that this is the last day of the special pre-release of our Bass Fishing Guide.

Email #5: Last Call (PM)

This fifth email always trips people up. Two emails in one day?

This is where they get really nervous and tell us, “I don’t want to send out too many emails. I don't want people to get mad at me.” 

Well, if you’ve built up enough goodwill with your email list, you don’t have to worry about that. 

In your last email, let your audience know that today is the last call to grab your offer. Then, send that email in the evening, around three to four hours before your offer expires.

You’ll be surprised at how many people open this email and buy with just minutes to spare!

Example Email

Subject Line: Last Call

Hey, I usually don’t send this many emails in one day, (or even in a week) but I wanted to make sure you didn’t miss out on this.

We use this email marketing strategy every single time we run a promotion and every single time… it works! 

Do not reinvent the wheel. Try this.

Space Your Emails (Every Other Day)

Let’s say that your exclusive offer runs Monday through Friday.

Your first email should be sent a few days before your promotion begins so you can set the stage for Monday. In this scenario, you’ll send that email on the Thursday or Friday before.

Your second email should go out at the start of your promotion, which would be Monday. 

Then, space out the next few emails to send every other day. That’s a reminder email on Wednesday and two deadline emails on Friday.

Email Schedule

To recap, here’s what your five day promotion will look like:

Thursday: Email #1 (Awareness)

Monday: Email #2 (Offer & Deadline)

Wednesday: Email #3 (Reminder)

Friday: AM Email #4 (Deadline) + PM Email #5 (Last Call)

How to Increase Your Open Rate

This one tip alone is GOLD. 

This trick is so simple that it takes just a few minutes, but every single time we use it, our open rate increases by 5% to 10%. That’s huge!

This is where the spacing of our emails comes in handy. This entire email marketing strategy is spaced out enough that we can re-send each email to the unopens.

What does that mean?

The “unopens” are people who haven’t opened your email. Depending on your email provider, you can resend an email just to those people who haven’t seen it yet.

Here’s the deal. Not everyone is going to open your email. They might not check their email for three days and they come in right in the middle of your promotion week.

So here’s what we want to do. After you send your email, wait 24 hours, then resend it to the unopens.

In this strategy, you’ll resend the first three emails to the unopens. This gives people a chance to see what they missed.

If you’re not doing that, you should be. It WILL increase your open rate.

Heck, it works so well, we do it with ALL our emails now. We email our list at least once per week, but sometimes two to three times per week. Each email gets resent to the unopens 24 hours later. 

Email Schedule

This is what your new email promotion schedule looks like:

Thursday: Email #1 (Awareness)

Friday: Resend Email #1 To The Unopens

Monday: Email #2 (Offer & Deadline)

Tuesday: Resend Email #2 To The Unopens

Wednesday: Email #3 (Reminder)

Thursday: Resend Email #3 To The Unopens

Friday: AM Email #4 (Deadline) + PM Email #5 (Last Call)

This tip alone is going to get more eyeballs on your email, and get you more sales on your offer.

We’re building an email list to get attention, right? Well, get more attention by sending it to the unopens. Don’t forget that!


This is the exact email marketing strategy we use to sell. We write five simple emails, then resend them to the unopens 24 hours later. 

It’s been proven time and time again to sell physical products, digital products, services, affiliate programs… anything you have to offer.

In summary, you’ll start by letting them know your offer is coming. Then, you’ll send reminder emails throughout your promotion to let them know that the exclusive offer is currently available, but expiring soon. And finally, you’ll resend Emails #1-3 to the unopens after 24 hours.

It doesn’t matter what you’re selling for this marketing strategy to work. You just need to have an offer that your audience wants and needs.

And if you’ve been doing email marketing for any period of time, you’re probably delivering good content that allows you to learn what they want and need. Then when you present that offer, they’re willing to buy.

If you’re a visual learner and want to see Scott map this email marketing strategy out on the whiteboard, you can watch that quick 10 minute video here.

Scott Voelker

Over the years I’ve helped thousands of people TAKE ACTION to UNLOCK their true potential on building their ultimate freedom business, by developing the skills to make them resilient, confident and FUTURE PROOF. I’ve clocked my 10,000 hours over the years working in the trenches myself and helping others build and grow their brands. I know the power in TAKING ACTION better than anyone and I’ve seen people lives changed as a result of it...including my OWN!