FIVE Email Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

Sidestep these Don’ts and step ahead with these Do’s to grab and keep the reader’s attention.

When you control the real estate, whether an email marketing campaign or a newsletter, the format and content should be perfect.

You should also make it easy for readers to follow and absorb the ideas you present.

You worked hard to compose these messages. Use this series of Don’ts and Do’s as a checklist to avoid mistakes and keep your readers engaged.

These examples were inspired from emails I’ve recently received, followed by a recommended edit.

1. Do not use reverse type. Use a dark color on a light background, not white type on a dark background.

2. Do not use hard-to-read colors, like pale yellow, that don’t stand out. Select sharp and clear colors for your palette.

Visit the Website

Visit the Website

3. Do not center text. Use left alignment. The reader’s eyes bounce around the page with centered text. Left alignment helps the reader know where the next line starts.

“Left aligned text is easier to read than centered text for paragraphs. This is
because when you center your text, the starting place of each line changes.
This forces your users to work harder to find where each line begins to
continue reading.”

“Without a straight left edge, there is no consistent place where users can move their eyes when they complete each line.”
(Source: UX Movement)

4. Do not address the reader as, Hey Name. Always address the prospect as Name or Dear Name. When you want the reader’s attention, time and money, show respect by using formal discourse. The correspondent will let you know when they are prepared to be informal with you.

5. Limit use of I and We. Use YOU and YOUR. The email is about the reader, not about the service provider.

Hey Sam,
My name is Pat and I am from Company.

We offer an online payment system that provides an easy and secure way for clients to accept credit cards and e-checks from their clients. 

Our company is specifically designed for business owners.

My response:
Who cares about your name and Company?
How did you learn my name?
What do you know about my business?
Where is the reader (YOU) here?

Your name came to my attention as a Public Relations professional with a small agency.

Many small business owners like yourself find it easier to accept credit card payments and online payments instead of checks.

With Company’s online services, you can easily set up accounts to receive payments from your clients in the way they wish to make them.

BONUS: Always send a test email to your personal email account. Review it carefully, clicking on all the links.

After you write, wait a day before sending your email newsletter or campaign, so you can give it a fresh, final look.

This Month’s Tip

Do not send the email before proofreading. Read aloud every sentence backwards from the period. That is, period the from backwards sentence every aloud Read.

You will be surprised how often this technique helps you catch missteps. Remember, spell check will accept both trial and trail.


Have you been tripped up by mistakes like these in your email marketing? Let’s jump on a Zoom call and check your latest newsletter or next communiqué. Contact me at, set an appointment here or call me at 212.677.5770. Together we’ll step over these pitfalls and ensure you keep the reader on the straight path of your email’s message.

See also Lose Excess Fat (Verbiage) in 2022 .

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Image credit: Prodeep Ahmeed (Pixabay)