How Often Should You “Sell” in Your Emails?


In a moment, I’m going to tell you how to get a free copy of my upcoming book.

But first…

…another sneak peek, this from Chapter 7…

I asked ChatGPT recently, “How often should I sell in my emails?” 

The robot hemmed and hawed a bit before saying, “A common approach is to follow the 80/20 rule, where approximately 80% of your content provides value and 20% is promotional.”

Bad answer, Robot. Don’t buy that bull, dear reader. 

I suspected the robot would say this. ChatGPT compiles its answers from stuff it “reads” online. And the internet is full of people who spout this nonsense.

One of my clients told me about a storytelling “expert” who spouted the same 80/20 BS. The guru preached a 1:4 sales-to-story ratio – one sales email for every four “storytelling emails.” 

Here’s the problem with this advice. It suggests promotional content does not provide value. 

If you divide your content into “valuable” versus “promotional,” you buy into the myth and you train your audience to believe it. 

They’ll love your entertaining, “valuable” content. They’ll hate and ignore the promotions. A recipe for business failure. 

In Chapter 2, I said, “…the difference between unethical manipulation and ethical persuasion is INTENT. You intend to help your clients.”

“Help,” as in “provide value.” 

When you promote your products and services, you persuade prospects to recognize the value. You persuade them to act in their best interest. That’s not an imposition. That’s a gift. 

If you treat promotions as UN-valuable, you devalue your products and services. You withhold your gifts.  

Promote with confidence and pride. Stand behind your products and services. You will sell more, and your clients will benefit more.  You will not impose upon those who buy. You will help them.  

That’s why my ratio is 1:1. Every piece of story-powered content provides value. Every piece sells. Every piece includes a next step. 

I shared the excerpt yesterday during a session of my Content Marketing Masters program.

We had a great conversation about what we “sell.”

Products and services? Sure. But we also sell complimentary stuff — e-books, live trainings, strategy sessions, and more.

Wise and wonderful R.J. Redden said she thinks of all those “next steps” and promotions as “invitations,” as in…

“I invite you to enjoy my e-book.” or “I invite you to join my paid program.”

A great way to look at it — as gifts, not impositions.

So now…

…I invite you to get my book.

Reply to this email today (September 6, 2023) with “Story Power Book,” and I’ll send you a free copy after I publish it. No cost for the book. No sock-it-to-you “shipping and handling” charges.

Don't go away yet..

p.s. Coaches, authors, and consultants hire me to power-up their creative content and storytelling to captivate prospects, stand-out and book more business.

Whenever you're ready, here are several ways I can help you become a storytelling stand-out so you'll land more clients without pitching and prodding:

1) Get the Story Power Profit Pack -- 52 Strategies, Tips, and Tactics  to Transform Your Content from Ignored to Adored.

2) Watch the free, 7-minute Micro-Training: “The 3 Most Important Storytelling Keys to Captivate Prospects and Inspire Them to Act -- Without Pitching and Prodding.”

3) Become a Story Power VIP: Master how to discover, assemble, and deliver business-building stories. Twice-monthly live masterclasses. Members-only content. One-on-one feedback and consulting sessions. And more… If you'd like to learn more about our VIP program, just reply to this email and put "Story Power VIP" in the subject line. I’ll contact you with more details.

4) Work with me one-on-one: If you’re interested in working directly with me -- to discover, assemble, and deliver powerful, business-building stories -- simply reply to this email and change the subject line to "Private Client." Tell me a little about yourself, your business, and what you'd like to accomplish, and I'll reply to discuss options.

5) Invite me to speak at an event: I can tailor a presentation that meets the specific needs of your organization. Informative. Entertaining. Virtual or live. Potential for continuing education credits when applicable for your group. If interested, reply to this email and change the subject line to “Speaking Engagement.” I’ll circle back to discuss the possibilities.

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Tom Ruwitch

Tom Ruwitch is the founder and CEO of Story Power Marketing. For more than 30 years, he has helped businesses grow by delivering powerful stories using a variety of different media.