7 Emotional Triggers to Improve Email Conversions


To increase email conversion rates, make your emails irresistible. Use emotional triggers to drive the readers’ attention.

What are emotional triggers?

Reminisce for a moment: when was the last time you purchased something after reading a sales email? What were you thinking? Can you even remember? Now, what were you feeling? You remember that, don’t you? Emotions are the primary motivating factor in consumer behavior.

Emotional triggers, in email marketing, are tactics that prompt conversion-driving feelings from your reader. If you haven’t integrated triggers into your email campaigns, now is the time to start. Here’s how.


This is the first task you need to undertake when creating an email campaign.

Before you start writing emails, you must be clear about one thing: your objective. What is the purpose of your current email campaign? Are you trying to sell something? Do you want to nurture relationships? Would you like your reader to see a piece of new content on your website? Whatever you end up writing needs to have a purpose.

Here are the most popular email campaign objectives:

  • Drive additional traffic to a website
  • Increase sales conversion and revenue
  • Increase email engagement metrics
  • Grow and retain subscribers on our list

But, your campaign can serve any purpose you can dream up. Just plan your campaign with the goal in mind.


What emotions do you want to trigger in your emails?

Once your campaign objective is determined, it’s time to decide which emotions to trigger. The potential is limitless, but these seven emotions are most likely to drive conversions. For optimized email campaigns, provoke one of these feelings.


emotional triggers


1. Belonging

Belonging makes email recipients feel like they are part of a whole. Words like “family,” “together,” and “cooperation” provoke belonging. Images of people working as a team or with animals can also help facilitate this emotion. Trigger a sense of belonging to nurture relationships with your reader.

Example: “Together, we will overcome this.”


2. Hope

Hope is the anticipation that something positive will happen in the future. You can trigger belonging by setting the expectation that a particular outcome will occur. An excellent way to make your reader feel hope is to address a problem and provide a guaranteed solution that has to do with your products, services, or website content.

Example: “After you see this, you are never going to have that problem again.”


3. Guilt

Guilt is used in email marketing to make your recipient understand that they can make something right. Trigger guilt by telling your recipient that if they don’t act, something could go wrong, or someone will miss out. This is one of the strongest methods of generating conversions if executed properly.

Example: “If you don’t provide the best services, your customers are the ones that pay.”


4. Vanity

Vanity appeals to people’s sense of pride in their intelligence, smart decision making, or self-worth. Flatter your reader to trigger that pride – tell them what they want to hear and sell nearly anything.

Example: “You wouldn’t have gotten this far if you weren’t exceptional.”


5. Fear

Fear is a way for you to make your reader feel as if they are in danger if they don’t act. Your products, services, or content become a savior when you trigger fear in your email campaigns. Use fear to get people to learn a new set of skills (point your reader to educational content) or purchase a product or service (send your reader to your products).

Example: “One out of every six people who lives in the United States could have avoided a severely traumatic situation if they would have known this sooner.”


6. Lust

Lust is waving a carrot of desire in front of your recipient. Does your reader want to get the girl? Would the reader be seemingly better-off if driving that new luxury car? Trigger lust by leading your reader to the feeling that they could get that bigger, better thing (the grass does look greener over here).

Example: “Imagine how you would feel with flawless, glowing skin… and how others would look at you.”


emotional triggers


7. Greed

Greed appeals to your email recipient’s desire for wealth or power. Let your reader know they could be richer or have more influence. Interestingly, the yearning to have more money triggers many people to spend money. Statistics work well when triggering greed.

Example: “He earned 5X more within the next year after starting this program.”

So you’ve got to the writing part.

Now this is the hardest one. You must trigger the reader’s emotion and make it look natural. What if you’re not sure whether your copy will work? You can use help of professional writers. Find one on services like Upwork, Toptal or Essay Writer. You don’t have to make it a rule. Just consult with a writer the first time you’re going to use emotional triggers. During your next campaign, you’ll do it yourself.



When it comes to email marketing, emotional triggers are going to improve your conversion rate. If you’re not using them yet, now is the time to start. First, set a goal, then choose from the top emotions that convert: belonging, hope, guilt, vanity, fear, lust, or greed. Use them to improve your click-through rate and increase revenue.

What other emotions do you think you can trigger to increase conversions? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.

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