Four Ways to Add Personality to Your Emails & “Get Real” With Your Contacts

Despite being the go-to marketing channel for businesses of all shapes and sizes, sometimes email gets a bad rap.

Why, though?

Here’s the deal: when people get turned off by marketing emails, it’s often because the messages they’re receiving are way too robotic.

You know the ones we’re talking about, too.

No voice. No personality. Something straight up copy-and-pasted from a template.

Listen: your contacts don’t want to feel like they’re receiving emails from a robot.

They want to feel like they’re hearing from an actual human that’s offering a helping hand.

And oftentimes the best way to encourage a positive response from your readers is by getting “real” with them.

Because in a day and age where people are tired of spammy marketing messages, authenticity is more important than ever.

In this quick guide, we’re going to break down some simple steps to add personality and inject some much-needed emotion into your emails without reinventing the wheel.

So let’s get started!

1. Tack on Some Personal Touches

Perhaps the best way to prove you’re more than a robot is by putting yourself into your emails.


Here are some low-effort ways you can add some personal touches to any given marketing email:

  • Include an image of you, a team member or personal photo from social media (think: your email signature is prime real estate for a headshot)
  • Use your actual name instead of your business’ name in your email copy (and also use personalization tags to address your reader by name, too!)
  • Rely on warm, contact-centric language that makes your readers feel like they’re being addressed directly (conversational tone, lots of “you” versus “I,” buttering them up)

These personal touches are the email equivalent of providing service with a smile.

Although subtle, they show the ever-so-important face behind your business.

2. Make an Emotional Connection

Emotions are some of the most powerful motivators in marketing.

Whether you’re tugging at someone’s heartstrings or harping on pain points they experience, making an emotional connection immediately makes people more invested in your business.

Many nonprofits have mastered the art of making that connection through both imagery and copy. Here’s a good example from Charity Water, highlighting specific examples of where their donations go and what they’re doing to help those in need.

But how do you create that much-needed connection as a business?

One of the most straightforward ways to make it happen is by bringing up problems that your readers share.

If you’re sending out a marketing newsletter, that means empathizing with struggles such as growing your brand on a budget or trying to find enough time in the day to grow your business.

Saving time. Saving money. Simplifying the madness of our day-to-day lives.

These pain points are universal and talking them out creates an instant sense of understanding between you and your contacts.

The key here is not to be a downer, but to eventually present yourself as the solution that your readers need.

3. Tell a Story

Another effective way to get real with your contacts is through storytelling emails.

Because everybody loves a good story, right?

The most compelling stories you can tell through email, tick at least one of the following three boxes:

  • Highlight a struggle or problem that you solved (hey, sound familiar?)
  • Explain how to do something relevant to your readers based on firsthand experience
  • Motivates or empowers your readers

Stories likewise make for powerful subject lines, such as this recent one from ProBlogger: “3 Practical Writing Tips That Grew Kelly’s Readership by 500%.”

The email compels the reader to click to hear her story and find out what they can do to replicate that success.

The inclusion of “500%” also adds a sense of legitimacy and credibility to the story, proving that you aren’t just making something up, you have facts and results to prove it.

Whether it’s a blog post, case study or positive testimonials, highlighting tips and successes through stories are huge trust-builders for your business, too.

4. Offer a Helping Hand

If you want to remind your readers that you’re here to help them, why not be forward about it?

No pitching, no hard selling. Something as simple as a check-in or message that says “Hey, we’re here for you” can be surprisingly effective.

Through asking questions or highlighting what your business can do to help, your messages are now focused on your readers’ needs first and foremost.

When in doubt, ask what you can do for them rather than vice-versa.

How Are You Getting Real with Your Contacts?

Remember: anything you can do to present the human side of your business is a plus!

Getting real with your contacts helps you stand out from the crowd and create a personal connection with your list.

In short, adding personality to your emails is a win-win!


Caitlin Hutchinson

Caitlin Hutchinson

Social Media & Community Manager at Sendlane
A native of San Diego, California, Caitlin has a passion for developing creative and engaging marketing content. She is primarily responsible for overseeing the development, execution and delivery of digital content across all of Sendlane’s channels as well as maintaining an online presence of Sendlane's team culture. She has enjoyed being a part of a powerhouse team where she has had the opportunity to wear a variety of hats and take her knowledge and creativity to the next level. When not focusing on increasing Sendlane's online presence you'll find Caitlin playing music on her guitar or piano and spending time with her Husband and their rescue dog, Piper.
Caitlin Hutchinson