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An Alternative to Looking Silly

Today I received an email with this subject:

10 Powerful Secrets to Email Marketing

Because I am interested in email marketing and "powerful secrets," I opened the message. I saw that it featured a free downloadable report with this jazzy title:

Email Marketing vs. SPAM: A 10-Round Smack Down

A photo of a man wearing a suit and boxing gloves illustrated the "smack down."

The email included three links to download the report. One said "Download here." Another was labeled "Download this free report today!" The third link said "Download" and the name of the report.

Not one of the three links led to a downloadable report. Each one linked to another page of sales copy that did NOT include a link to the report. The links led to a dead end.

To the sender of that email, here is one of my 10 Powerful Secrets to Email Marketing: Test. That is, send the email to yourself. See if the links work. If they don’t, fix them. Then test again.

It’s a great alternative to looking silly.

Syntax Training

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By Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston has helped thousands of employees and managers improve their business writing skills and confidence through her company, Syntax Training. In her corporate training career of more than 20 years, she has worked with executives, engineers, scientists, sales staff, and many other professionals, helping them get their messages across with clarity and tact.

A gifted teacher, Lynn has led writing classes at more than 100 companies and organizations such as MasterCard, Microsoft, Boeing, Nintendo, REI, AARP, Ledcor, and Kaiser Permanente. Near her home in Seattle, Washington, she has taught managerial communications in the MBA programs of the University of Washington and UW Bothell. She has created a communications course, Business Writing That Builds Relationships, and provides the curriculum at no cost to college instructors.

A recognized expert in business writing etiquette, Lynn has been quoted in "The Wall Street Journal," "The Atlantic," "Vanity Fair," and other media.

Lynn sharpened her business writing skills at the University of Notre Dame, where she earned a master's degree in communication, and at Bradley University, with a bachelor's degree in English.