This is part 2 of my critique of an email I received from a well known Christian online community that is for readers to discover great content and engage with their favorite Christian authors. Click to read part 1.
Email – Subject Line and Above the Fold
The subject line: “Jesus Prom: Loving People Like Jesus Loves” is not bad, although kind of vague. For 75% of believers because it’s about Jesus their 8 second attention span will begin. The non-believers will fall off in droves unless they can make some connection between a prom and how Jesus loves.
The image is compelling in of it self and will probably resonate with believers. The question they will have is “what is this about?” What is not immediately apparent is that the little girl is somehow imperfect. For this email it would be better if she was more apparently “imperfect”or obviously having Down Syndrome .
Now it is apparent that the story features someone with Down Syndrome. The reader is well into their 8 seconds in the first two paragraphs. However, is the story about the girls annual birthday ritual or about her plans to get married.
At this point the reader probably is not sure where this is going or committed to seeing it through. Additionally, the email has violated at least three of the four general email best practices. It has not made it’s point and it has not gotten to the point quickly which means there won’t be any compelling call-t0-action.
That being said, let’s continue.
This email comes across as a sermon and has lost the attention of ninety-five percent of the once captured audience. The have probably deleted this email and moved on to one of their other 99 emails.
In the online space of emails, clergy aren’t afforded the communication luxuries they have when they are in church. There isn’t a captive audience that has traveled miles to hear their message. The online crowd is a worthy yet fickle bunch with an attention span smaller than an insect.
What do you think? What opportunities do you see for better online ministry? If you haven’t already done so please click in the space for Sharing Your Expertise and select “Notify me of new posts via email”.