John Hanlon Reviews

John’s Monday Tip of the Week: Tips for e-mail sends (What to do and what not to do)

Good afternoon,

We’re only a few weeks away from the election and I know a lot of your stations are planning some events around the Talker’s Tour, the debates and election night. We’re about to enter the prime political season and I know that means that you all will be reaching out to your listeners a lot via email in the coming weeks.

That brings us to John’s Monday Tip of the Week.

Rodney recently sent me a list of 9 Email Do‘s and Don’ts so I wanted to pass on the best tips to you (Here’s the link for the full story).

Here are three tips from that list I think could help out in your email outreach strategies. I posted the three tips themselves and then some thoughts on why they are so important.

1.) DO create emails with one call-to-action:” Whenever you send out e-mails, make sure you have a goal in mind. What are you trying to do? Do you want to sell tickets, promote a new show or inform your listener about current events? Whatever it is, make that goal as clear as possible.

Ask yourself: if I’m a listener, is accomplishing the goal an easy thing to do? If not, the email should be re-edited. If you’re trying to sell tickets, make sure a link to buying tickets to obvious to readers. If you’re promoting a show, make sure that listeners see a clear button leading them to the correct podcast page or show page etc.
2.) “DON’T design with one big image:” This is a tricky one. I know it often seems easiest to just put all of an e-mails content into one big image. I know we’ve all done it.
However, as this advice article notes, “Designing your email with one large image can lead to a very unattractive message that users may automatically delete without a second look.” With that in mind, make sure most of your email‘s most important content is in the text so that even if a user can’t get images in their email system, they can still see your message.

3.) Personalize Subject Lines: This one seems more complicated than it is. I know in many cases, we don’t know the full names of our subscribers but the goal here is to let the reader know that this message is going to them for a speial reason. As the tips sheet says, the goal is to catch the reader’s eye.

You can do that by making sure the name of your station is in the subject line (these listeners did sign up for these e-mails after all) or names of particular local personalities is in the email.

I know, for instance, that some state or local hosts are participating in the Talker’s Tour promotion so stations with prominent local hosts participating should make sure those hosts are mentioned in the email subject lines along with the national hosts who will be coming.


On a personal note, I recently started my own movie review newsletter so I know it can be a lot of work to put all of the pieces together. However, I also know that it’s 100% worth it! E-mails are a great way to get your message out to your specific audiences so taking some time crafting them will pay off in the long run.

This has been John’s Monday Tip of the Week.

Have a great week, y’all!


John P. Hanlon