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In email copy, you have to write as if every word will be read because there's simply no margin for error. But consumers have limited time when it comes to reading email, and more often than not, copy isn't read word for word. Yet there's a way to write fully developed copy that could stand on its own while still being aimed toward the skimmers.

Copywriters have to recognize where the eyes are trained to read first. It's become second nature to glance at the headline and the beginning and end of paragraphs in the email message before anything else. Consumers have been trained to understand this is where the most pertinent information lies from experience reading newspapers and similar emails.

Once identified, pack those high-visibility areas with active words like "save" and "increase" that help enable readers to determine the nature of the email from just a cursory glance. Include contact information in places where there's no competition with other content, namely the top corners or at the end of a paragraph.

Don't neglect design either. Even though the focus is on copy, design is its best friend. Try to get creative with sidebars and columns that frame larger graphic elements. The right design will promote the best eye flow to take consumers to what you want them to read.

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