Design For Your Subscribers: Tips and Tricks to Increase Email Marketing ROI - Annie Angelo


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Design For Your Subscribers: Tips and Tricks to Increase Email Marketing ROI

Think design is all about graphics and layout? Think again. Your best marketing messages won't mean a thing if your subscribers aren't reading them.

Find out how strategic thinking, planning, and purpose-driven decisions are the foundation of great design. This session will provide insights into how to improve your email and landing page designs to increase performance and produce better results.

* Annie Angelo, Senior Marketing Consultant, ExactTarget

Published in: Education, Technology, Business
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Design For Your Subscribers: Tips and Tricks to Increase Email Marketing ROI - Annie Angelo

  1. 1. DESIGN FOR YOUR SUBSCRIBERSTips and Tricks to Increase Email Marketing ROI<br />
  2. 2. WHY DOES DESIGN MATTER?<br />Design is the visualization of a business plan. More than a pretty picture, great design requires an actionable plan and measureable goals. <br />Design should acknowledge the subscriber experience.Put yourself in your subscriber’s shoes and understand how they will interact with your communications.<br />Design and technology are seamlessly integrated.Emails should be designed and coded to display properly in the various ways a subscriber will view it. A comprehensive testing strategy is essential to ensure success.<br />
  3. 3. LET’S TALK ABOUT…<br />Creating an Actionable Plan<br />Subscriber Experience<br />Performance-Driven Design<br />Code Matters<br />The Mobile Inbox<br />Test, test, TEST!<br />Resources<br />
  4. 4. BUSINESS PLANNING CHECKLIST<br /><ul><li>Why are you sending this email?
  5. 5. Drive leads, Increase brand awareness, etc
  6. 6. Do you have actionable segments?
  7. 7. Data, life-cycles
  8. 8. List demographics, email clients
  9. 9. What do you want subscribers to do?
  10. 10. Consider value prop, Calls to action
  11. 11. What are your key metrics that tie to objectives?
  12. 12. Open/click data, Number of leads generated</li></li></ul><li>MAPPING TOOL<br />Map your communications in one, simple view<br />Excerpt from Sample Life-Cycle Plan Deliverable<br />
  13. 13. It all begins with theFrom Name – <br />73% of subscribers click “Report Spam” or “Report Junk” based on this field.<br />*Email Sender and Provider Coalition<br />FROM NAME<br />IS YOUR FROM <br />NAME EASILY <br />RECOGNIZABLE?<br />
  14. 14. SUBJECT LINE<br />69% of subscribers click “Report Spam” or “Report Junk” based on this line.*<br />IS YOUR SUBJECT<br /> LINE RELEVANT <br />AND INTERESTING?<br />*Email Sender and Provider Coalition<br />
  15. 15. SUBJECT LINE<br />69% of subscribers click “Report Spam” or “Report Junk” based on this line.*<br />IS YOUR SUBJECT<br /> LINE RELEVANT <br />AND INTERESTING?<br />
  16. 16. Images are disabled by default more than 50% of the time.Isyourkey message visible, relevant and enticing in this space?<br />PREVIEW PANE: IMAGES OFF<br />WHAT IS YOUR <br />EMAIL SAYING<br /> WITH IMAGES OFF?<br />
  17. 17. PREVIEW PANE: IMAGES ON<br />What’s your open rate? Only subscribers that turn images on trigger an open.Are you giving them a reason to keep reading? <br />AVERAGE PREVIEW<br />PANE DIMENSIONS:<br />300px by 300px<br />
  18. 18. PREVIEW PANE & IMAGE BLOCKING<br />Hotmail - Images Off<br />Hotmail – Images On<br />
  19. 19. PREVIEW PANE & IMAGE BLOCKING<br />Hotmail - Images Off<br />Hotmail – Images On<br />
  20. 20. ABOVE THE FOLD<br />Does your content above the fold provide motivation to respond? Are you persuading subscribers to scroll?<br />DON’T CRAM<br />EVERYTHING<br />ABOVE THE FOLD…<br />INTRODUCE CONTENT<br />ABOVE THE FOLD<br />
  21. 21. COMPLETE EMAIL<br />Seconds – not minutes – to view an entire email<br />Only 11%* of those who open will scroll below the fold!<br />EVEN IN THIS VIEW<br />THE ENTIRE EMAIL IS NOT ONSCREEN AT ONCE<br />*The Nielsen Norman Group<br />
  22. 22. Subscriber experience doesn’t end with the inbox<br />CLICK THROUGH<br />Don’t ignore the transition to your website, landing page, or other marketing collateral. <br />Ensure the products in your email are available on your site - better yet, map the individual products from the email to a product page.<br />“…A well-designed email means nothing if the landing pages don’t work well.” – Chad White<br />
  23. 23. CONSIDER THE SUBSCRIBER EXPERIENCE<br />Is this the message you want to convey?<br />
  24. 24. Brand Synergy • Content Hierarchy•Visual Hierarchy Engagement Techniques • Rendering Results •Tested Quality<br />PERFORMANCE DRIVEN DESIGN<br />
  25. 25. Website<br />Email<br />Visual recognition of the brand across all media channels creates a seamless brand experience, creating trust to engage and transact.<br />BRAND SYNERGY<br />
  26. 26. Wireframe<br />Preview Pane<br />Above the Fold<br />Create a content hierarchy, arranging each content element (text and/or image) and associated call to action with appropriate weight.<br />CONTENT HIERARCHY<br />
  27. 27. Headlines utilizing size and color hierarchy<br />Secondary calls-to-action<br />Primary call-to-action<br />Maximize response by creating a visual hierarchy, using design techniques to guide the subscriber's eye through your email based on the content hierarchy.<br />VISUAL HIERARCHY<br />“Quick Bites” or summaries<br />
  28. 28. Preheader Teaser Text <br />Forward to a Colleague<br />In This Issue<br />Read More Link<br />Subscriber Q&A<br />Lifestyle Imagery<br />Use of Background Color<br />Link to External Video<br />Recovery Module<br />Use design techniques to engage the subscriber through a mix of emotive and rational imagery and content. Smart use of images, borders, buttons, links, charts, colored backgrounds, etc.should be applied and tested.<br />ENGAGEMENT TECHNIQUES<br />
  29. 29. Optimized Design<br />Non-optimized Design<br />Main call-to-action in prime placement <br />HTML text in <br />web safe fonts <br />If an email is created primarily with images,<br />it will not display effectively when images are blocked.<br />Designed with image-blocking and preview pane viewing in mind.<br />Ensure your design efforts are viewed as intended once they hit the inbox. Emails that are created with the subscriber experience in mind will have a greater chance of success.<br />RENDERING RESULTS<br />
  30. 30. *Fingerprint from Litmus, February 2010<br />Only comprehensive testing will validate successful rendering of design and ensure functional performance prior to sending to the subscriber inbox.<br />TESTED QUALITY<br />*ExactTarget via Fingerprint from Litmus, Feb. 2010<br />
  31. 31. NEWSLETTER DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS<br /><ul><li>Include a Table of Contents or In This Issue Section
  32. 32. Include a 3-4 sentence teaser for articles with a “Read More” link instead of including the full article
  33. 33. Introduce your main call-to-action within the preview pane and other important content above the fold
  34. 34. Develop a visual hierarchy for headings, subheading, and body copy for easy scan-ability
  35. 35. Use images selectively to eye track to engagement areas</li></li></ul><li>POSTCARD DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS<br /><ul><li>Your message should have a singular focus; don’t let your postcard become a newsletter
  36. 36. Make that message the Hero in your design
  37. 37. Introduce your main call-to-action within the preview pane and other important content above the fold
  38. 38. Consider the placement and inclusion of secondary messaging that supports your main focus</li></li></ul><li>TRANSACTIONAL DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS<br /><ul><li>Position content front and center; keep it simple
  39. 39. Don’t include too much cross-sell information (follow the 70/30 rule)
  40. 40. Use a higher text to image ratio
  41. 41. Use font colors and sizes to create a visual hierarchy
  42. 42. Send a branded HTML email instead of Plain Text</li></li></ul><li>CODE MATTERS!<br />HTML for email is different than HTML for the web<br />Modern web design utilizes CSS (cascading style sheets) for layout. However, due to inconsistent CSS support, HTML tables must be used for email layout. CODE LIKE IT’S 1999!<br />No standards exist for displaying HTML in email.<br />Proper syntax still counts – use a validator to check for general errors.<br />Beware of:<br />Forms, surveys, search bars<br />Javascript<br />Video/flash<br />Animated .gifs<br />Background images<br />
  43. 43. THE MOBILE INBOX<br /><ul><li>Smartphone users use mobile email primarily for triage
  44. 44. There are no standards in place for displaying emails on smartphones
  45. 45. Most mobile devices display a “stripped down” version of the HTML portion of an email, NOT the plain-text version
  46. 46. Optimizing your emails with HTML text in web-safe fonts will benefit smartphone users as well
  47. 47. Consider including a link in your email to view a mobile friendly version of your email
  48. 48. One-column designs hold up best on mobile devices</li></li></ul><li>IS THIS A POSITIVE SUBSCRIBER EXPERIENCE?<br />Email with “Download Now” call to action<br />Above the fold view<br />
  49. 49. IS THIS A POSITIVE SUBSCRIBER EXPERIENCE?<br />Cluttered landing page<br />Lots of irrelevant content<br />Where’s the download?<br /><ul><li>$99?!
  50. 50. Did the landing page meet the expectations that the email set up?
  51. 51. Did you build my trust as a subscriber? </li></li></ul><li>ANOTHER LOOK AT THE EMAIL…<br />
  53. 53. PIER 1 IMPORTS<br />
  54. 54. DESIGN “A”<br />
  55. 55. DESIGN “B”<br />
  56. 56. DESIGN “C”<br />
  57. 57. DESIGN “C”<br />DESIGN “A”<br />DESIGN “B”<br />WHICH DESIGN PERFORMED THE BEST?<br />
  58. 58. PIER 1 RESULTS<br />MEASURES: CTR of Delivered Emails<br /> Unsubscribe Rate<br /> Sales Generated by Subscribers<br />WINNER: Generated 86% More Clicks Than Other Competitors<br /> Generated 25% More Sales Than Nearest Competitor<br />
  59. 59. WINNER: DESIGN “A”<br />BUT…<br />
  60. 60. AAA OHIO<br />
  61. 61. DESIGN “A”<br />
  62. 62. DESIGN “B”<br />
  63. 63. DESIGN “C”<br />
  64. 64. DESIGN “B”<br />DESIGN “A”<br />DESIGN “C”<br />WHICH DESIGN PERFORMED THE BEST?<br />
  65. 65. AAA OHIO RESULTS<br />MEASURES: CTR of Delivered Emails<br /> Projected Renewal Revenue<br />WINNER: Outperformed Control CTR by 26%<br /> Outperformed Projected Revenue of 2nd Place by 4%<br />
  66. 66. WINNER: DESIGN “C”<br />
  68. 68. DESIGN “A”<br />
  69. 69. DESIGN “B”<br />
  70. 70. DESIGN “C”<br />
  71. 71. DESIGN “C”<br />DESIGN “A”<br />DESIGN “B”<br />WHICH DESIGN PERFORMED THE BEST?<br />
  72. 72. MARKETINGEXPERIMENTS RESULTS<br />MEASURES: CTR of Delivered Emails<br /> Unsubscribe Rate<br />WINNER: Outperformed 2nd Place by < 2%<br /> Outperformed Control CTR by 26%<br /> Outperformed Control Unsubscribe Rate by 15.9%<br />
  73. 73. WINNER: DESIGN “B”<br />
  74. 74. LANDING PAGE TESTS<br />Control:<br />Horizontal<br />Vertical<br />
  75. 75. 5 THINGS WHITEPAPER<br />Total Leads Generated: 88<br />Total Leads Generated: 102<br />LIFT: 34% <br />Total Leads Generated: 76<br />
  76. 76. DESIGN ELEMENTS TEST<br />Buttons<br />vs<br />Text<br />> 230 characters<br />< 130 characters<br />vs<br />Imagery<br />vs<br />
  77. 77. WINNING COMBINATIAON<br />DESIGN ELEMENTS TEST<br />Buttons<br />vs<br />Text<br />> 230 characters<br />< 130 characters<br />vs<br />Imagery<br />vs<br />
  78. 78. AS A RESULT<br />
  79. 79. Subject Lines<br />Sender Lines<br />Personalization<br />List Segmentation<br />Greeting Text—Content<br />Greeting Text—Style<br />Body Text—Content<br />Body Text—Style <br />Closing Text—Content <br />Closing Text—Style <br />11. Images<br />12. Offer / Promotions<br />13. Response Buttons<br />14. Day / Time Sent<br />15. Color <br />16. Coupons<br />17. Pricing <br />18. Free Trial <br />19 HTML vs. Text-Only<br />20. Unsubscribe<br />21. Taglines<br />22. Creative<br />23. Press mentions <br />24. Store Locations<br />25. Phone Numbers<br />26. Animations <br />27. Charts<br />28. Strikeouts <br />29. Signatures<br />30. Testimonials<br />31. Celebrities<br />32. Polls / Surveys<br />33. Call to Action<br />34. Sound<br />35. Numbering<br />36. Themes<br />37. Discounts<br />38. Refer a Friend<br />39. Click to Talk<br />40. Email Sign-up<br /> 100s of Potential “Success Factors”<br />TEST, TEST, TEST!<br />Insights gained from testing may be applied to ALL Marketing Channels <br />(TV, Radio, Print, Tradeshows, Web, Email & Search)<br />
  81. 81. EXACTTARGET RESOURCES<br />Email Marketing Design & Rendering: The New Essentials<br />Design Tips for Outlook 2007 & 2010<br />Email Design for Lotus Notes <br />Twitter<br />@ETDesign<br />@ETMktgSolutions<br />ExactTarget Blog<br /><br />MarketingExperiments<br />Maximize Agency ROIthrough testing<br />
  82. 82. SUBSCRIBERS, FANS & FOLLOWERS<br /><ul><li>6-part research series into Email, Facebook & Twitter usage of 1,500+ consumers
  83. 83. Report #1: “Digital Morning”
  84. 84. Visit or text SFF & your email address to 38767 to download</li></li></ul><li>Colby Cavanaugh<br />Senior Manager, Partner Marketing<br />Email:<br />Blog:<br />Twitter: @ETPartners<br />
  85. 85. ExactTarget’s New Digital Marketing Resource Guide<br />Stay Current!!<br /><ul><li> Websites and Blogs
  86. 86. eNewsletters
  87. 87. Books and Whitepapers
  88. 88. Industry Organizations / Associations
  89. 89. Conferences</li>