Have you ever truly embarrassed yourself?
And when I say embarrassed, I mean utterly mortified?
I’ve had a few experiences in my life, some of which you’ll know if you’re subscribed to my list. But the first time it happened to me must have been when I was about 14.
Where I grew up in Swansea, there’s this thing called the Mumbles Mile. It’s a mile-long stretch of pubs along the seafront in Mumbles. The idea is that you have a drink in each one and attempt to still be standing by the time you reached Cinderella’s nightclub at the end of the pier.
Now, I was clearly underage at 14. But like most teenagers, filled with rebellion and high hopes for street cred, my friends and I decided to give it a go.
Dressed up to the nines and with pockets filled with cash we’d saved, we started at the White Rose, managed to get served, downed our ciders swiftly and moved on.
Next up, The Nag’s Head. Same deal, all good.
Vincent’s and The Prince of Wales also passed without event.
The fifth pub was the William Handcock, a pub whose name tickled our teenage minds. We were already tipsy and giggling after our four pints, and we’d bumped into some other people we knew from school. One of them suggested we change tack and try tequilas.
I’d never had tequila before. But I thought I was well ‘ard, so we lined them up on the bar with our salt and slices of lemon, and down they went.
You’ll probably know that the thing with shots is they don’t always hit you straight away. So, feeling bold, we broke the rule of the Mumbles Mile by having another drink in the same pub.
I can’t remember how many we actually had in there, but predictably the night went pear-shaped as soon as those shots hit us.
Catherine fell over. Sharon slumped on the bar.
For me, it was Vom Central. And I mean, Exorcist-style projectile ralphing on the floor, my shoes, my dress and IN my handbag.
Emma managed to hold it together enough to call my parents who came to the rescue, scooping us up from the pub and dropping my friends home.
Mum and dad say they have this lasting memory of me trying to get up our steep driveway in my heels, vomit all down myself but still trying to pretend I wasn’t drunk.
I made it to the bathroom and I must have tried to get rid of the evidence by taking all my sick-stained clothes off.
Except for one sock, apparently.
My mum heard me being ill and came in to find me sitting naked, save for one sock and some decorative chunks in my hair.
If she was angry at what we’d done, it disappeared the moment she saw the sorry sight. She actually started laughing and in all fairness to my folks, they never gave me a hard time for that. They knew the experience itself was punishment enough – one of life’s important lessons.
Cue my first hangover, and an almighty one at that. It lasted three days and I’ve never been able to touch tequila since.
That was also my first dose of Drinker’s Remorse. News of vomitgate spread around my year at school. It took me a while to live that down, and I definitely didn’t get any street cred for my efforts.
You might wonder why I’ve told you this story, so let me explain.
I’m signed up to several email lists, but there are some emails that I prioritise.
The ones I read first are from the people I know best. But the only reason I know them best is because they’ve bared all in their writing.
Their emails were most entertaining, real, revealing and therefore the most human.
So when it comes to emailing your subscribers be brave, and be real.
Write from the heart.
Three things that happen when you do this:
- The words just fall from your head onto the page. You don’t have to think actively – at least for the first draft. You can just spill what you’re thinking onto the screen and tidy up later.
- Your words will sound exactly like you. You can tell a story, give your opinions, or have a rant. But it’ll sound exactly like you’re chatting to a friend, and that’s what you want. It sets you apart and makes you memorable, and when you meet your subscribers they’ll say you sound exactly like they thought you would.
- Each time a reader laughs or nods in agreement with what you’re saying, you’ll pull that person a little closer towards you. They’ll want to keep reading your stuff.
And what does all this mean? That, ultimately, they’ll be more likely to buy from you. Because they know you better and trust you more than people who stay aloof.
It’s really important that you do this, because it’s how you’ll weed the good clients from the bad. It’s how you’ll clean and sharpen your list over time.
So be brave. It’ll pay off.
Or, if you need a copywriter who can do it for you, read my report on how to find a good one.
P.S. Got a funny story? Then email me and tell me, I’d love to know.