MarketingSherpa – Email Design How-to: 5 insights to improve open and clickthrough rates
Emails can include a variety of content. We can make them beautiful with images, animations, dynamic copy and buttons. But beauty is only skin deep. We need results.
“Email design is about clear communication,” says Kristina Huffman, Senior Design Consultant, ExactTarget. “It is not just about making things pretty. It is about getting your message through in the most concise and precise way.”
Poor email design can muddy your offer, fail to give readers a clear call-to-action, and put a cap on results. We want to help make your emails more effective by focusing your message and tweaking your design.
We spoke with Huffman and two other design experts to get their advice on how to effectively design marketing emails. They provided these five insights:
Insight #1. Set a single goal
Creating an email before setting the goal is like buying a shirt without checking the size. There is a good chance it won’t fit. This is also true if you’re choosing a template from an ESP. You always need to understand the goal of your email before you design it.
Also, realize that emails rarely sell a product, generate a download, or achieve any other campaign-level goal. Emails sell clicks. The landing page is where readers make a final conversion. The job of the email is to get them there.
So ask yourself, is your email supposed to:
- Bring readers to a product landing page?
- Attract site traffic to your blog?
- Provide a customer’s order information?
- Bring readers to a registration page for your webinar?
Keep these goals in mind as we go through the other insights.
Insight #2. Give your emails a priority
Your email should have a clear hierarchy of information. Anything that does not support the main goal should be eliminated or deemphasized — even if it ruffles a few feathers.
“Everybody wants all of the information to be the most important, and nobody wants to admit that their piece of content is not as important as others,” Huffman says. But for readers, “if everything is screaming at you, you are not going to be able to hear anything.”
Want to check out the who’s who and what’s what of email marketing?
Read The Buzz.
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