Tarzan Kay

<tarzan@tarzankay.com>

January 23, 2024

to you

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Subject:

here’s why formatting matters

Read all the way to the bottom if you’re thinking of signing up for Kajabi this year. Their best deal of the year ends Thursday.

Hey

Since moving to ConvertKit, I’ve had a surprising number of subscribers ask me about the margins of my emails. Why do they look different? Why did I change them?

I’m flattered so many people noticed, honestly. 

We moved back to ConvertKit (<–affiliate link), it took a bit of time to set margins the same way they were set in Active Campaign. We’re actually setting the text width, not the margins. 

ConvertKit’s template editor got a major overhaul since we last used it, so Sandra had to put on her tech support hat – one of about seven hats she wears – and go figure it out for all of us.

I care a lot about the way my emails look.

I leave detailed notes for my team when I want a photo caption in a slightly smaller font or for a few specific characters to be italicized.

When a spelling mistake or formatting error sneaks through our review process, I feel intensely embarrassed. Like I should quit everything and apply for a job at Costco. 

To me, it’s the difference between emails from someone like me who's been doing this for eight years, and someone who’s just getting started. 

There are a thousand and one clues that tell my well-trained eye when a marketing email is coming from an established business vs one that’s coming from a beginner who doesn’t have things like, say, grammar conventions or an SOP for uploading and scheduling emails. 

But even an untrained eye takes in a ton of information from a single email. Whether or not you’re trained as an email marketer, your brain is gathering all kinds of information about the sender. 

It knows what it’s looking at. 

An easy-to-read email with no spelling mistakes and text that’s 500px wide? You might not be able to explain exactly why, but in a few seconds, your brain will say, “Legit business. Safe to click / buy / take advice from.”

The margins do matter. 

There is so much we notice without noticing, and make a judgment call to delete, save for later, or click and take immediate action. Here are three things that can help you get into that coveted third category:

‍Have someone else spell check. Once your email is ready to send, you’ve reread it too many times for even a trained eye to be reliable. Have a team member or VA do the final proofread. 

️Set your text width to 500px or 600px. When paragraph text stretches across the whole desktop, it makes the email hard to follow. Limiting the width of the text will ensure the text wraps appropriately, making your emails much easier to read. 

Sandra made a video about changing the max width of your emails in ConvertKit. Watch it if you haven’t done this yet. 

️Use the same template every time. Your emails are a vibe. Be deliberate about how they look, and what sections you want your subscribers to see repeatedly. To see some slick formatting, check out Big Desk Energy, a newsletter by Tyler Denk, founder of Beehiiv.

Now that we’ve addressed this wildly popular topic I can cross it off my list and get back to the topics you tell me you love the most, which have little to do with your business and more to do with everyday life.

What do you want to hear about next? Hit “reply” and tell me.

Till next Tuesday then.

T-Boss

P.S. 

I teach formatting in Email Stars, obviously (waitlist here). 

But if you want a problem solver like Sandra Booker on your team, whose knowledge extends far beyond solving tech issues and includes things like the most strategic way to spend money, how to not feel busy even when you are, a system for annual and quarterly planning, how to plan a promo and debrief a launch, etc….

…then you might consider checking out The 627 Advisory Board (<–affiliate link), which is currently enrolling new members with a special bonus package until the end of the month. 

P.P.S 

Thinking of investing in Kajabi to run your course-based business?

Kajabi is offering their best deal of the year until Thursday — 3 months for $99. One of my membership people, Sue McLachlan of The Unicorn Advisory, is offering a massive suite of bonuses when you sign up through her link. (Click for all the details). 

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