To tease or not to tease ... that is always
At least it has always been the question for
And to some degree for Fax Broadcasts or Fax
Teaser copy is the copy printed on the outer
envelope of your mail package. Or as a "headline"
of your fax-flyer. In both instances you're looking for high
readership. So, will the teaser help - or hurt? That is always
the question for mail and fax.
For E-mail it is different. In a few short years
we've learned the tease is mandatory for E-Mail Marketing.
What's in the subject line is what pulls your reader in -
or sends them away.
The only way to learn if you should use teaser
copy or not ... and what it should be if your answer is "yes"
... is to test. Here are 13 Platinum Ideas to make
the teaser copy concept work in your E-mail, fax messages
and direct mail.
Idea #1. Explain who you are
People buy from people they know. If you are
the big player, have a reputation, a high quality image, a
huge awareness, a meaningful position, life is different.
That is, when you are well known, you don't have to do or
If you do not have all these factors going for
you - you must tell your story. And you can begin with the
You start at the top, in the beginning, up front
with your news, your message. Including who you are to bring
this wonderful opportunity to this select marketplace.
Facts and figures draw attention - and can prove
your worth to your prospect audience. Explaining can begin
Idea #2. Entertain your prospect or customer
What is funny to me is not to you. When you
smile, I frown.
We all know comedy can back-fire. Still, when
you entertain with something just a tick humorous, you most
often get attention. And a listening or reading audience.
Which is exactly what you want to happen.
If you elect to entertain, be 100% certain you
are comfortable with your audience. And know they will be
comfortable with you.
Idea #3. Enhance the product or service you
Begin your tease message with an upgrade or
This works for products and services. Where
you "assume" the sale, and build upon it with "more".
With added value, some extra as part of the package.
The enhance approach works best with customers
and others who already know you. As they are comfortable with
you. They know what you offer, what to expect, they understand
When your tease enhances it tells your audience
you know them, and feel they will want this "extra".
Idea #4. Make certain your copy relates
Teaser copy for teaser sake is not the way to
build ongoing relationships.
Meaning, whatever you say to attract, to pull
your reader in, to get attention ... must be paid off. In
the opening paragraph or two. Maybe even in the sub-head.
Make certain your teaser copy relates to your
product, your service and definitely your offer. Your prospect
is in a hurry - make your opening message easy to understand
Idea #5. Offer a benefit
Begin your message with a benefit. Answer the
WII-FM question -- What's In It for Me. And do it fast. With
1, 2, or even 3 benefits as part of your tease.
You can do this with partial statements. Each
a tease. The payoff answers found inside the envelope or down
You can offer a benefit in full. And tell your
reader there is more to follow.
People do not buy features - they do buy benefits.
Lead, tease, with a strong opening benefit.
Idea #6. Urge action!
Marketing, Sales Promotion, Merchandising and
Direct Marketing are all "action" oriented disciplines.
To be successful they must sell.
Meaning the buyer must be persuaded, convinced,
encouraged to take action. To phone, to visit, to respond,
to do something!
Your teaser can begin this action process. With
a choice of words selected to get action. Words like learn,
earn, make, buy, save, act and now - each that lead a buyer
to do something.
Idea #7. Tie the outside to the inside
Tie your beginning message to the full message.
That is, make sure the first words your reader
reads make sense when they get to the full story. If they
do not, you will loose ... your prospect will wonder off.
Mentally, if not physically.
Yes, the tease is a hook. It is a grabber. It
is a way to get attention. At the same time it must also be
meaningful. If it is "out in left field", soon that
is where you will find your prospect. Lost and wondering about.
Not good when you're trying to make a sale.
Tease - yes. And then make the tease pay.
Idea #8. Tie the copy & graphics together
There is no doubt we live in a graphic world.
And one of color, too.
Still, whatever image you use to grab your prospects
attention must have some relationship to your message. Your
product and service. Your offer.
A travel offer will work best with a travel
picture - vs. the inside workings of a printing press.
Yes, sometimes the benefits are what you receive
in return for your money; a college education earned with
borrowed money. In this instance you show the reward, not
Use a graphic as a tease. Just make certain
it relates to your product, your offer.
Idea #9. Have a Limited Time Offer / Limited
And let your reader know in the tease about
your L.T.O. Or L.N.O.
People respond better to a little pressure.
Much better when something is going to expire or go away unless
they act now.
Ditto for a limited number.
"Crazy" as it seems, the value is
not nearly as important as the date or number. Put a date
on something - meaning that "unless you respond by "x"
date you will not be able to take advantage of this opportunity"
- and response goes up.
Tell your audience this item is truly rare.
There are "only 300 and you must act now or you
will miss out". This approach gets more people to respond
Begin your tease with a drop dead date, or a
limited number. And then pay it off with your message.
Idea #10. Begin your story . . .
... with your teaser copy.
Meaning with the first line - maybe the first
paragraph. It is written and presented in such a way
that the reader is "forced" to scroll down B or
turn the page - to get the rest of the story. The rest of
your message. To learn about your product, your service, your
Get someone to read 50 words and you can get
them to read 500. Which, although it sounds like a lot, it
is less than a page and half of copy.
Yet, before you can get a reader through 50
- you must get them through your first 5 to 15. Not magic
numbers, still important.
Hook your reader by beginning your message early.
Idea #11. "Steal" concepts only
Yet, "stealing" ideas from others
is usually a good thing. Someone else may have a thought you
can "adapt" to your needs. Good. Go for it. Adapt
Still, you want to avoid the usually disastrous
approach of copying what others have done. Even when it's
legal, rarely is it profitable.
Be original. Learn the concept, and "adapt"
it to your needs.
Idea #12. Present a "You" attitude
Does your teaser have a "You" attitude?
Vs. talking me-me-me?
Do you talk about the customer and what they
will gain when they do business with you? What they will earn,
save, make, feel or achieve when they respond?
Just as your full message must have a "you"
attitude - so must your tease. In fact, that's where your
full message begins - with the tease. That's what your prospect
Write in the language of the reader ... put
"you" into action.
Idea #13. Talk with your audience
No one ever likes to be talked "at".
Few like to be talked "to".
Everyone enjoys being talked "with".
As "with" means we're having this discussion, this
exchange, this conversation of ideas and thoughts - we're
having it together.
This concept is so important I like to spell
it this way;
Meaning you and I will work on this program
... Two-Gether ... the two of us. Meaning we are a team ...
Present, persuade, convince, sell ... whatever
it takes to move your prospect to becoming your customer.
And do it in a dialogue that begins with a tease. That begins
when you talk with your audience.