- Stop launching your email sequences into the void hoping they work
- For SaaS marketers, Copywriters, Growth Marketers, Product Managers
- Takes up to 20 minutes (but worth it!)
If you’ve ever spent days optimizing an email campaign or onboarding sequence, only to see it flop when going live, chances are you were guessing.
I feel you.
It’s not easy to know exactly what to change when you either don’t have enough data or have no idea how to collect it.
But what if I told you that there’s a way for you to do an 80/20 version of launching your email sequence into the real world – without needing real people to look at it?
Here’s what to do: Prompt ChatGPT to wear the shoes of a potential customer, then to go through your email sequence email by email; and finally for each, get it to give you its feedback, including trust and persuasion scores (so you can A/B test different email variants).
This is only part of what ChatGPT shared with me when I used the AI copywriting prompts I’m about to teach you:
Here’s how to use ChatGPT 4 to get similar results for your business or client.
Step 1: Define your customer persona (a critical step before optimizing an email)
Since we want to get valuable insights on our audience’s reactions to the email sequence, we need to tell ChatGPT to wear their shoes. In this step you have 2 options:
- If you already know who your target persona for the sequence is, then you can include their role or any other descriptor to give ChatGPT specific information.
- If you don’t know exactly who you’re targeting and would like ChatGPT to come up with a target persona based on what it can see/read on the site, then just leave this part out (see prompt below).
In my case, I wanted to get specific insights for a freelance copywriter like myself.
In ChatGPT 4 (Plugins with WebPilot or Browse with Bing models) enter the following prompt.
Copy paste this prompt:
Pretend you are a potential customer for the site [URL]. You're a [ROLE (if known or needed)]. Who would you be? Describe yourself, your role, desires, needs, pains and problems in vivid detail.
ChatGPT will provide you with a pretty detailed profile of a typical customer. And what’s even better is that it will see itself in them, which will help with providing the specific feedback you need.
Here’s some of what I got (Hey Alex!):
You can check out the full profile in my chat.
Step 2: Share the first email you want to optimize, and ask ChatGPT for feedback
Next, we’re going to share our first email in the sequence.
Note: For the purpose of this post I’ve used ChatGPT to also write the simple emails for me. Even the variants for each (asking it to make them less clear and less benefit oriented than the original ones, so I could see if the tests were objectively accurate). If you want help writing your email sequence, you can use this simple series of prompts.
In ChatGPT, just copy paste the following prompt, along with your email’s From name (not necessary but could help), Subject line and Body copy as plain text (you might want to “clean it up” in a Google document beforehand).
Copy paste this prompt:
Ok, now let's say [ACTION THEY TOOK] on the website. And receive the following email: [EMAIL CONTENT] What do you, [PERSONA NAME], think of the email? What would you do after receiving it?
Replace [ACTION THEY TOOK] with a quick description of what the user should have done to start receiving the email sequence (i.e. “you opted in for an ebook”, or “you purchased product X”. Make sure you also add the name that ChatGPT came up for the persona in [PERSONA NAME] so you remind it of who it should pretend to be when replying.
ChatGPT will reply with your prospect’s impressions and expectations. All gold you can use to optimize your email copy and the structure/flow of the sequence (look at that CTA recommendation in point 3, love it).
Step 3: Repeat for all emails you want to optimize in the sequence.
From this point forward, we can either:
- Repeat the previous step for every email in our sequence and get a first impression feedback, or
- Have ChatGPT test different behaviors throughout the sequence.
For example, we can tell “Alex” that he’s not convinced to buy after the first email, and that they get a second one. Just use the following prompt including another email in the sequence:
Copy paste this prompt:
[CONTEXT]. After [DELAY]/[TRIGGER] you receive another email: [EMAIL CONTENT] What would convince you to [ACTION YOU WANT THEM TO TAKE]?
In [CONTEXT], add any information ChatGPT needs to know when it comes to the user behavior you want to simulate and test for (i.e. “You are not convinced to sign up for a paid plan yet”, or “You are skeptical of claim XYZ”.). You can even mention potential objections or questions that you think your prospects might have at this point.
Replace [DELAY]/[TRIGGER] with the amount of time users have to wait before receiving the email or with the event that triggers it (maybe a specific action inside the app, or clicking a CTA in the previous email…).
For [ACTION YOU WANT THEM TO TAKE] simply specify the goal of your email sequence. For example, “sign up for a paid plan”, or “log into the app and try X feature”.
In seconds, ChatGPT (or Alex) had generated the following for me:
Repeat this step for all the emails in your sequence, testing any behavior you can think of!
Step 4: A/B test different email variants
Now it’s getting fun.
This is optional, but if you created different variations for the emails in your sequence, you can let ChatGPT compare them. To give you even more specific and measurable feedback, we’re going to ask it for two scores, too: a trust score and a persuasion score.
Simply adjust and enter the following prompt:
Copy paste this prompt:
Ok, now I'd like your feedback on different variants of the previous emails. For each I will share a version A and a version B. After I send version A, tell me you read it and then wait for version B. After I shared version B, for each version, give me your thoughts on: 1) First impressions when it hits your inbox, 2) What you thought while reading the whole email 3) What would you do after having read the email 4) Give me a Trust score (from 0 to 100 where 0 is not trusting, and 100 is highly trusting) and a Persuasion score (from 0 to 100 where 0 is not persuaded at all/wouldn't buy, and 100 is very persuaded/ready to buy) Then 5) Tell me which email would have been more helpful and persuasive for you as a prospect. Let's start with the first one: [EMAIL CONTENT]
Replace [EMAIL CONTENT] with your version A of From name, Subject line, and email body copy and ChatGPT will reply, patiently waiting for version B:
Just reply with a simple “Here it is:” and follow with the email content.
In just a few seconds, 💥 GPT handed me this:
I tested this for a client project and even tried fooling ChatGPT. Here’s what happened.
I used this prompt to test an onboarding sequence for a SaaS client and it worked really well. After rewriting the whole sequence to improve the copy and flow with real-world data we collected, I put it to the AI test.
Invariably ChatGPT provided pretty accurate feedback on what it thought worked and what didn’t. In the AB tests it always detected which were the new, improved emails – even if I tried messing up with it (first sharing an old email as variant A and a new one as B, then switching them up).
Here’s one of the test results:
This process is as close as you can get to testing an email sequence with your audience – when you don’t have one or are not ready to do so.
Take the recommendations with a grain of salt, but go ahead and try it. Get creative! Your imagination and strategy are really the only limits.
In my tests I’ve always gotten pretty accurate feedback from ChatGPT.
And if you want to get better at writing emails before having ChatGPT grill you, head here.