Putting together an effective email marketing campaign can be very difficult, as is any interruption marketing. In essence you are filling your subscribers’ inboxes with junk mail so it’s important that you make a good impression and compel your readers to read on.
There has been a definite switch towards the use of HTML email marketing simply because of the range of designs it can afford you – and a good design really does help you to improve on your click-through rates.
Email Marketing Strategy
With such a lot to gain from an effective email marketing campaign, it is well worth investing initially in a certain amount of time and effort to make sure you reap the full benefits from your graft. An effective marketing campaign can really help to boost the traffic to your website, in turn increasing your enquiries and sales.
First of all, before you even think about how the email is going to look, it is important to plan and strategise about the overall campaign.
A time scale is the first thing to think about, perhaps if your products are seasonal this may be a good place to start, otherwise opting for a weekly, monthly or quarterly email is usually the way to go. To decide on how frequently you will email your mailing list, thinking about what you want to communicate to your readers is the first step to take.
Is the content going to be news or product led? Are you going to offer some kind of discounts or incentives for your readers? Once you have decided how often you’re going to send out your emails plan at least 3 emails ahead so you can structure your emails properly and they can lead on from one to another.
Also try and engage with your readers when it comes to the content, inviting them to communicate through Facebook or Twitter and adding YouTube videos into your emails only helps to make your mailers more effective.
Once your content is good and interesting you should see your open rate starting to increase, the next step is to look towards maximising your click-through rate. When it comes to this point, creating high quality design for your emails really is of utmost importance.
Basing your emails on your website design is a really good idea, it allows for some brand consistency which subconsciously helps your audience to connect the dots.
c) Aim to please
The best piece of advice you can follow is ‘aim to please’ – a characteristic which is vital to any successful email marketing campaign.
Emails with a ‘hard sell’ attitude will soon hit the trash pile and if you’re asking people to give up their time to read your email you should reward them with interesting and informative content that leaves them waiting for the next mailer.
When actually designing your email there are a number of design hints you might want to follow to make your campaign as effective as possible and encourage readers to click through.
It may sound clichéd but simplicity is always key. Unlike a website design, you shouldn’t be looking for something really fancy, but just a basic design which does the job.
A main header image followed by the main content is a good place to start. When the design is kept simple it is also less likely that there will be problems between various browsers.
Unfortunately, although you might use the latest browser, many do not which can be a pain when it comes to designing HTML emails. For this reason, make sure you make your email compatible with as many internet browsers as possible because an email that can’t be shown will do nothing towards the effectiveness of a campaign.
- Alt Tags
HTML emails look messy when images are not displayed, so make sure you style the alt tags to make sure your email looks smooth.
- Avoid Background images
I personally feel this should always be the case, when text is involved make sure that the background is a block colour as a complicated image behind the text will only make it difficult to read. And after all, you would quite like those who open it to read it!
You may find it a daft idea, but always give your readers an ‘opt out’ sentence. Especially if you are sending your emails out to current clients – it keeps them happy.
e) Don’t forget to test
Just like the proofing of your email, don’t forget to do a final test before you click the send button because once it’s gone it is not retrievable and mistakes are unforgivable.
Follow these simple tips to see an increase in your open rates, boosted click-through rates and in general less people bored towards the ‘unsubscribe’ button.
Image Credit:we are blink