A while back I heard a really interesting take on a single event that changed the course of civilization as we know it.

Now, I’m not an anthropologist.

And you should always do your own research.

But according to this theory, the introduction of coffee changed our world forever.

For thousands of years, humans spent most of their day slightly buzzed. Not every civilization had access to clean drinking water. But we WERE able to ferment alcoholic beverages (weak by today’s standards)… and people would sip on this “beer” (and sometimes gruit) all day as they got thirsty.

Here’s a fun little experiment to put this in context.

Get yourself a 12-pack of your favorite sessions beer and crack your first one at 9am, as you’re beginning your work day. Proceed to drink one of these every hour for the next hour or so. At the end of the day, take a look at the quality of the work you produced that day.

Clearly, this practice didn’t contribute to a lot of big breakthroughs.

Now, idk how much evidence there is behind this theory. I have also heard that the reason we shifted from being purely hunter-gatherers to an agricultural society was because we started planting grain so we could distill spirits and get fuckedddddd up bruvvvvvv.


After many centuries of subsisting on alcohol of our beverage of choice, coffee was introduced all around the world.

In Europe in particular, soon after switching from beer to coffee… THE FUCKING AGE OF ENLIGHTENMENT HAPPENED.


I guess you could say covfefe caused a pretty big shift in our trajectory of a species.

Now, why am I telling you this?


I’m a big fan of coffee myself.

I know some people say it’s bad for you… some people say it’s the nectar of the gods.

All I know is it fucking tastes good and I like drinking it and I’m an adult and I can do what I want.

That’s why whenever I get a submission for an Email of the Week idea from a coffee company… I’m gonna strongly consider it.

My good friend Abbey Woodcock sent me this email to break down from a company called Fellow who have some really cool, really sexy coffee serving and preparation products. (IDK wtf else to call them, help me out here.)

The email Abbey sent me demonstrated a very important sales concept that I had to break down for you.


Without further ado…

Let’s take a look at this week’s Email of the Week!

This is the 47th installment of my Email of the Week series. (Catch up on previous episodes here.)

And in case you’re new around here, here’s how this all works…

The Rules For Email Of The Week

Each week, I go out into the wild to find a super-effective e-commerce marketing email… and I break down what made it work. My goal is for you to tune in each week, so I can teach you strategies and best practices YOU can use to make your own emails better.

I find these emails in my inbox, but I also accept suggestions from readers who have a remarkable email they’d like to share.

If you recently received an email that was so awesome it made your jaw drop, I wanna see it.

Forward it to me (chris at theemailcopywriter dot com) with a brief message about what you liked about it. If I choose to do a breakdown of the email you sent, I’ll give you a shout out and link to your site.

The only rule is… you can’t pick yourself.

Now then, without further ado, let’s check out the Email of the Week!

Despite The Negative Press Covfefe.

There’s this sales technique I learned from studying Scott Adams (who is brilliant, btw). It’s called ‘thinking past the sale.’

I’m sure he didn’t invent it.

But, MAN… is it powerful.

Thinking past the sale is when you use language the bypasses the whole “should I even buy this thing” part of the decision making process… and gets your prospect to focus on the options they can buy. In their mind, they start picking out the color/model they want… rather than wondering whether they should get it in the first place.

Well, that’s my definition for it.

If that doesn’t make total sense just yet, that’s OK.

This email from Fellow does a great job of demonstrating that concept.

Let’s take a look…

Subject line: A tough drinkware decision but someone has to do it

This is solid.

It’s really solid.

“A tough decision” draws you in with curiosity.

“but someone has to do it” furthers this feeling.

It causes you to lean in and wonder “What are we deciding? I wanna play.”

Very subtle, yet powerful.


It begins to plant the seed for this ‘thinking past the sale’ concept.

Let’s continue…



They went there.


They did a little play on words with this idiom, I guess that’s the technical grammatical definition of what we got here.

It’s a little corny. But it DOES get your attention and make you smile a bit when you read it. And really, that’s what’s most important in the beginning of an email.

A couple things here…

I LOVE the focus on the daily ritual.

I think the best consummable brands do that, they turn use of their product into rituals.

I mean, humans have had (and still have) rituals we’ve been performing for thousands of years.

Before our brains were hijacked by the media (our new, collective religion), we had religious rituals… family rituals… community rituals.

Sure, some of them were bad like the Mayans and that whole human sacrifice thing. NO BUENO.

But focusing on the RITUAL of your product will lead to higher retention, more repeat orders, and a greater satisfaction from the use of your products.

We all cling to rituals because they’re an important part of our lives.

So, something to keep in mind.

This block of copy begins to unpack this whole thinking past the sale concept I’ve been discussing here.

It’s kind of like if you walk into a car dealership to check out a new car. If the dealer says to you, what color do you want… you start imagining yourself driving each one, thinking which one you’d look best in.

You’re already emotionally committed to the purchase by that point.

You’re now thinking PAST the sale.

It’s literally what’s happening here in this email.

“Hey, we’ve got this great mug to support your coffee ritual… pick out your favorite color and we’ll send it to you.”



Alright these made me laugh.

Well, really the Dusk Blue one in particular.

If you’re going to use this corny style of humor… wrapping it up with that little piece of self-awareness at the end is just A+ stuff.

It’s like hitting you on a whole different level of humor. At least that’s how I perceived it.


Anytime you can make someone smile or laugh in your emails… they’re going to like you more.

And if they like you more, they’re going to have a higher likelihood of buying your stuff. And the more times they buy your stuff… the more emails they’ll get from you. And the more emails they get, the greater chance they’ll laugh from one of your emails… and aroun and around we go.

I call this the Virtuous Cycle of Standout Emails.

I invented that term for my talk at the Inbox 2020 event.

And, we’re making it a thing.

Make sense?


Let’s wrap this puppy up…

This email was a short one.

It’s NOT in my preferred plain-text style, but that’s OK.

Sometimes it’s ok to take a look at a variety of examples from companies who do things differently than I would.

What’s most important here is this thinking past the sale concept.

It’s a powerful weapon of persuasion to keep in your back pocket.

Overall, a great email.

Awesome job Fellow team.

Keep up the great work.

Special Shout Out to Abbey Woodcock! (HI ABBEY)

Abbey Woodcock is an expert at many things. She’s one of the premier experts on decoding (and creating) brand voices. She’s one of the most accomplished launch copywriters I know. She’s about as high level as you can get in this industry.

She’s the Founder of The Freelance Co-op.

She’s also the author of What They Hear When You Write… a MUST HAVE book on understanding voice in writing.

Basically, you need to get on her fucking email list and follow what she’s doing… because her stuff is phenomenal.

Oh yeah…

Abbey and I are also partners in a little program called the Get More Clients Masterclass, where we shared all our strategies for getting clients and each building multiple six-figure freelancing businesses.

I can keep going on and on…

But you get the point.

Abbey has a great eye for email… and she’s actually sent me a few others I’m going to be breaking down in the future.


Thanks so much Abbey… you rock!!!!!!!!!!

Big Takeaways from Fellow

  1. How can you get your readers to think past the sale?
  2. Subject lines need to have curiosity.
  3. If you’re going to use corny humor, calling yourself out will make people laugh on multiple levels.
  4. Turn the use of your product into a ritual.
  5. Headlines don’t sell, they grab attention.
  6. Write to achieve your objective, always.
  7. Keep your copy short, tight, and pithy.
  8. Dialogue is a powerful literary device.
  9. Present multiple product options to get people shopping.
  10. Give people a reason to buy NOW.

What You Should Do Next

  1. Subscribe to my email list so you can get ALL of the Emails of the Week delivered straight to your inbox, automatically.
  2. Leave a comment for me below and let me know what you liked about this email.
  3. Get on Fellow’s email list and buy something from them.They have some really cool products with sleek, sexy designs.

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