Want a Free Marketing Strategy Session?

Want a FREE professional marketing strategy session?

As a marketing strategist and copywriter, I get to work with rockstar entrepreneurs like Jason Van Orden, Jaime Masters, Ryan Moran, etc., to create and implement high-converting marketing and sales funnels.

I’m now researching a lower-priced, super-high-value offer.

This will be for online business owners who aren’t quite ready to invest in my done-for-you services but still want the strategy and process I use with my six-and seven-figure clients to increase their conversions and streamline their marketing and communications.

If you’re currently a successful one-gal (or guy!) shop that you know could be even MORE awesome if you didn’t have to do ALL your marketing yourself, I’d love to chat!

In exchange for sharing some of your obstacles and challenges around your marketing, content creation, and communications, I’ll give you the benefit of my 10 years online building two six-figure businesses.

I can:
– weigh in on your messaging
– do a quick eval of your homepage or sales page
– advise you on email marketing self-publishing, webinars, affiliate promos…

I’ve done it all – and I charge my current clients in the neighborhood of $250/hour for my expertise. But you can get it FREE!

If you want to get some clarity, direction, and input from a successful marketing strategist in order to help you grow faster while doing LESS, this could be a great trade!

Let me be clear: I don’t have ANYTHING to sell you. There will be no sales pitch at the end. I’m just info-gathering. 🙂

Interested? Please email my assistant at bella (at) fastlain (dot) com. We’ll ask you a few more questions to make sure we’re a good fit, and then get you scheduled!

Best Email Subject Lines of the Week

#fastlain feature: “Flop or Fly.”

I get a lot of email. (100+ a day!)

I delete most of it, but a few grab me. Every week I will be announcing 5 winning and losing email subject lines, and why they worked or flopped. Stay tuned to soon start to seeing a pattern — and to review your own subject lines with a more critical eye.

Just checking in! How is it going with subject lines? Did you use the tips from last week’s post? Comment and let me know the progress you have made!

#1:”Stranger in a Strange Land?”

From: Buck Books

Why it works:

This subject line is a great example of knowing your audience. Since this email list is aimed at book readers, they will probably get the reference to the novel by Robert Heinlein. +1 for piquing curiosity and +1 for literary reference = HOME RUN!

How you can use this:

Make your readers feel like “insiders” by using references only they’ll get. Then they’ll feel more engaged with the topic — and more inclined to open.

#2: “You have some dirty windows…”

From: Alex Charfen

Why it works:

Curiosity at its best. It stands out and makes me want to learn more

How you can use this:

Dream up a subject line that will be one-of-a-kind. Send the email that only YOU can send. That way, you train your readers to expect unique content.

#3: “Latest episode and it’s good. Real good.”

From: Nathan Latka

Why it works:

LOVE the conversational tone. It sounds natural and, as a result, doesn’t sound like bragging. And because it’s “Real good” I’d be a dummy not to read more!

How you can use this:

Keep it friendly and positive, and deliver the goods (Warning: don’t tell people something is “real good” unless you can stand behind that claim!).

#4: “Money, power, influence”

From: Tara Gentile

Why it works:

Talk about appealing to your target audience.. who WOULDN’T open this?! Money, yes. Power, yes. Influence, heck yes!

How can you use this:

Don’t be afraid to go for the bull’s eye and hit every one of your audience’s desires head-on.

#5:“Really Ugly Book Covers”

From: Adazing Books

Why it works:

I laugh just thinking about this subject line. It’s my favorite type – curiosity + a little quirkiness with the promise of humor. It’s unique and fun, and promises some info and education, too.

How you can use this:

Play on counter-intuitive wording to give your subject line an edge. Subscribers will click because it’s something they haven’t seen before. Going against what is expected is a sure pattern interrupt that will draw their attention.

Now, the flops:

#1:“Our Mother’s Day offer has had it up to 15% off”

Why it flops:

A sales should be a “gimme” when it comes to powerful subject lines. But this went off the rails! First, 15% off is not that impressive… I’ve read previously that 25% is the minimum to make a significant increase in sales. (Here is an article from Yoast on discounts — percentage off vs. $ off, etc.). Next, the subject line is confusing. It sounds like I’m in trouble (“My mother has HAD IT UP TO HERE!”).

How you can avoid this: Remember: Clarity FIRST.

My rewrite: “Mom would be proud of you…”

#2:“FINAL REMINDER ????????”

Why it flops:

Can you say “internet marketing scam”? THEY ARE LITERALLY SCREAMING AT ME! I hit delete before I opened.

How you can avoid this:

You better be telling my my house is on fire or that I won the Publisher’s Clearing House Sweepstakes if you are using ALL CAPS and a boat load of question marks!

My rewrite: “Last chance to save!”

#3:“Get A+ Zzzzz. Renaissance Hotels is on.”

From:  e-commerce site

Why it flops:

Are you as confused as I am? Confusion = no action. No action = no money.

How you can avoid this:

Remember the First Rule of #FastLain Communication: Clarity!

My rewrite: “Renaissance Hotels: The Best Sleep of Your Life.”

#4: “The Evolution Process From A Junior Level Designer To Becoming A Design Lead”
Why it flops: 

Several no-no’s here. Firs,t this is too long. It’s going to be truncated in the inbox and as a result it won’t be clear. Next, it’s not a topic I’m interested in. AND even if I read the whole darn thing, it’s not very compelling.

How you can avoid this: Keep it short. Keep it interesting. Keep it targeted.

My rewrite: “Ready for the Next Step in Your Design Career?”

#5: “Re: Greetings.,s/m”

From: a Nigerian Prince

Why it flops:

Do I need to say anything here?

How you can avoid this: Make sure you don’t look like a scammer. Avoid the “Re:” prefix. And just make sense.

My rewrite: “Give me your money.”

The upshot: The subject line is the headline for the email. If you don’t get it right, people aren’t going to read any further.

Got your own submissions? List them in the comments below!

Are You Putting Your Customers Down?

I remember the day I went to a yoga class for the first time.

The instructor came up to me during one pose, adjusted my hips and said,

“You’re about two years from a decent Downward Dog.”

I never went back.

I went to a chiropractor who took tons of xrays and then spent 40 minutes pointing out every subluxation in my spine, and projecting that if I didn’t come to him several times a week for the next 6 months, I’d be 2 inches shorter by the time I was 60.

I didn’t go back to him, either.

Last year, I found out I needed a root canal (my first!) in a front tooth.

Obviously not good news.

My dentist, whom I love, referred me to a specialist.

He told me, “Well, I’m not sure I can do this. There’s a good chance I can’t. And if I can’t we’ll have to pull the tooth and you can get an implant.”


Guess who I didn’t go back to?

Maybe that yoga instructor was 100% right (probably!).

Maybe she thought she was being inspiring.

Maybe the chiropractor was 100% right about my future spine.

Maybe he thought he was helping me.

Maybe the endodontist was 100% right as well.

Maybe he thought he was being honest.


People come to you to fix a problem.

They come to you for HOPE. Short-term hope. Not “Two years of three-times-a-week yoga and you’ll be so-so.”

That’s not to say you should lie to people or give them false hope.

But a little bit of hope, particularly at the beginning, goes a LONG way.

In business, it means:

  • Pointing out the issues and obstacles you see, but also pointing out some short-term wins and low-hanging fruit so your client can get immediate relief or success.
  • Showing them all the things they’re doing right so they don’t feel like they’re a lost cause.
  • Laying out the long-term path, but focusing on encouraging them in the short term.

In case you’re wondering…

I started going to an amazing Bikram studio where every lesson and every class was full of positive feedback, pushing me outside my comfort zone, and reaffirming the idea that I was making progress.

I found a chiropractor who focused on alleviating my immediate issue (sciatic pain) and then laid out a maintenance and improvement plan for the long-term.

I got a second opinion from another endodontist who said, “Yes, this is a tough one — but I’ve been doing this for 20 years and am confident that we can do this.”

Encouragement, short-term wins, and HOPE will sell — not scare — your customers.