Creating Exceptional  Email Marketing    Messages:       Part 2
HTML Design Best Practices• Think “in the box” when designing email    • Minimize number of screens and scrolling• Intersp...
Example• “Hooky” (!) headline• Excellent use of images and  balance of text/images• Main idea plus “legs”• Good balance of...
Optimizing HTML Email for Visibility• Encourage subscribers to whitelist you• Keep “view as Web page/mobile” links in pre-...
“Bullet Proof” Elements Survive• Universal Orlando  Resort email with  images off• Color, font,  background and  shape har...
Benefit of Balancing Text & Images• Much more of  your content  survives and  can be acted  upon
Sephora Design – Images On• Upper left corner  optimized for  visibility in preview  panes
Sephora Design – Images Off• Even if images  don’t render  key links and  topics survive• Still optimized  for visibility ...
Ulta Beauty – Images On• Some preview pane  optimization, but  main links for top  two offers are  “below the fold”
Ulta Beauty – Images Off• Prime position (upper  left hand corner) has  no link• But, free shipping offer  and link surviv...
Do Users Activate Images in Email?• Consumers more likely  to activate images in  email from companies  they regularly do ...
Top HTML Email Design Resources• High Impact Designer by TemplateZone   • Hundreds of pre-designed, customizable email, la...
Graphic Design Key Takeaways• Think “architecture” vs. “art”   – Remember message building blocks   – Design body of messa...
#5: Content         Old New RuleStatic; Generic or broadly segmented        NEW New RuleDynamic and contextually-targeted
Content from Two Perspectives                  • Should be a mix of promotional,Overall program     informational, transac...
Three Flavors of Email   Broadcast                Segmented                 Triggered   • Announcement,          • Targete...
Customer Email Program Example• Hewlett Packard monthly  newsletter  – HP Newsgram sent to all    registered customers  – ...
Other Message Types• HP deploys a good  mix of newsletter,  sales promotions  (deals), and holiday  greeting emails       ...
Apply and Align Messaging to the       Customer Lifecycle• Each stage of the customer lifecycle naturally lends itself to ...
Mix it Up• Storyboard your email program   – Some message frequency and sequencing can be planned, but allow     for trigg...
Compelling Email Content Ideas• Evolve, supplement or refresh your static HTML or plain text  email with   –   Animation  ...
Animation• Use minimally  and strategically• Movement is eye-  catching• Can enable more  content than  static images
Video in Email – Two Approaches• Link to self- or web-hosted   • Preferred for now due to spam blocking, filtering, image ...
Self- or Web-Hosted Video• Video in email tips:   – Alert them that the     email contains video       • Subject line and ...
Streaming Video into Message• Liveclicker’s Video Email  Express is integrated  with several ESPs   – Generates simple HTM...
Temporally-Relevant Content• Beyond seasonality  and holidays,  leverage major  events, news   – But, tread     cautiously...
Dynamic Content• Big and getting bigger• Content served can be based either on:   – database-attributes (i.e. gender)     ...
Time-Based Dynamic Content• Movable Ink’s  technology allows  emails like this one  (to a conference  attendee)   – to dis...
Other Dynamic Content Approaches• This retail message  displays   – location-specific     store information   – Real-time ...
Content Key Takeaways• When it comes to your email program, serve a multi-course  meal, not the same dish over and over ag...
Contact Information• Karen Talavera    •   Synchronicity Marketing (www.synchronicitymarketing.com)    •   Email:       ka...
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2. Creative: Creating Exceptional Email Marketing Messages: Part 2

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  • After AETV redesigned their emails using alt-tags behind images, multiple instead of a single image, and alt-text, they increased their click-throughs by 41%!- AETV (August 2007)
  • To begin with, think of all email campaigns as one of two types: either broadcast or triggered. You can usually easily see the difference because broadcast campaigns are the same, or substantially the same, for an entire list while triggered campaigns are specific to an individual action, characteristic, or event. When most marketers begin using email they have a tendency to broadcast the same message to their entire list rather than to respond to specific list member actions or inactions. Certain types of email – a newsletter for example – are appropriate for broadcast since newsletters usually contain information relevant to the entire list. There are, however, many other ways in which email can powerfully be used to speak only to specific segments of your list or individuals on it who are in-market or expressly interested in what you have to offer at a specific time. To realize the full potential of email, you’ll have to supplement your broadcast-style email with triggered campaigns. So, o successfully use triggered email you first have to understand which opportunities lend themselves to it. Unlike broadcast email, triggered email messages are automated, sent based on external events or actions, rules-based, and unique to steps in a consideration path, to individuals, or both.
  • Not only can you categorize triggered email campaigns and messages as belonging to one of the five main types you just learned about, you can also map them across a customer lifecycle path like this. In fact, I encourage you to use this as a checklist for creating your own triggered email appropriate to each stage. For example, do you have an email list sign-up available to people who haven’t purchased yet? If so, do you welcome new subscribers to the list? Do you educate and familiarize them with onboarding messages? Do you email them if they’ve been browsing or shopping online and then abandon before buying? Or, when it comes to your customers, do you thank them with bouncebacks after purchase? Send reminders? Acknowledge their birthdays? This graphic illustrates that there are many specific kinds of triggered email messages appropriate for different stages of the customer lifecycle and that you should be routinely using them across your target audience.
  • Their unique advantage is you can crop content from any web page. The one variable they handle is the image tag for their clients. It can render on open or stream on open to make their image content super-relevant. Most of the dynamic content choices (like location) are rules-driven (if responder is in NY, then show this store, etc.) The geo-location is IP-driven, not GIS. Goes down to city level, sometimes lower (neighborhood level) but not street-specific.
  • 2. Creative: Creating Exceptional Email Marketing Messages: Part 2

    1. 1. Creating Exceptional Email Marketing Messages: Part 2
    2. 2. HTML Design Best Practices• Think “in the box” when designing email • Minimize number of screens and scrolling• Intersperse images and text throughout• Place the offer above the “fold” • Ideally, in the subject line as well as body copy of message • Remember the eye travels from left to right • Link early and often• Use animation minimally and strategically • Animated gifs add uniqueness to your message, draw attention to calls to action• Make images and logos links • If including a company logo in the message, standard practice is to make it link to the company (or brand)’s homepage• Consider designing on a grid for scalability
    3. 3. Example• “Hooky” (!) headline• Excellent use of images and balance of text/images• Main idea plus “legs”• Good balance of text to images• Great consistency from subject line to headline to call to action
    4. 4. Optimizing HTML Email for Visibility• Encourage subscribers to whitelist you• Keep “view as Web page/mobile” links in pre-header• Balance images and copy• Add ALT-tags to images » These tags allow the designer to insert descriptive copy or links that viewers can read in place of blocked images• Keep ALT-tag copy short and specific • Less than 10 words is good, less than 5 best • Include your call to action or description of image• Include “bullet proof buttons” – HTML code the graphic vs. inserting a link to image• Test all URLs and links to ensure they work and display
    5. 5. “Bullet Proof” Elements Survive• Universal Orlando Resort email with images off• Color, font, background and shape hard-coded into HTML survives image suppression
    6. 6. Benefit of Balancing Text & Images• Much more of your content survives and can be acted upon
    7. 7. Sephora Design – Images On• Upper left corner optimized for visibility in preview panes
    8. 8. Sephora Design – Images Off• Even if images don’t render key links and topics survive• Still optimized for visibility in preview mode
    9. 9. Ulta Beauty – Images On• Some preview pane optimization, but main links for top two offers are “below the fold”
    10. 10. Ulta Beauty – Images Off• Prime position (upper left hand corner) has no link• But, free shipping offer and link survives image suppression
    11. 11. Do Users Activate Images in Email?• Consumers more likely to activate images in email from companies they regularly do business with, granted permission to, or know and trust
    12. 12. Top HTML Email Design Resources• High Impact Designer by TemplateZone • Hundreds of pre-designed, customizable email, landing page, and social media page templates for one low price • Free trial at www.highimpactdesigner.com• Email Layouts.com • Downloadable email newsletter layouts created by a pro designer• Campaign Monitor – www.campaignmonitor.com/gallery • Email marketing software for designers • Phenomenal blog answers many HTML design questions specific to email
    13. 13. Graphic Design Key Takeaways• Think “architecture” vs. “art” – Remember message building blocks – Design body of message as a mosaic, not a canvas• Know where response hotspots are and use them to your advantag – Upper left? Upper right? Pre-header? – Put color, icons here• Utilize graphic design to group and organize content into visually scan-able chunks• Optimize for visibility if images don’t render (balance)• Use graphics to enhance response vs. detract from it – Images should show what your copy “tells”• The confused eye doesn’t buy!
    14. 14. #5: Content Old New RuleStatic; Generic or broadly segmented NEW New RuleDynamic and contextually-targeted
    15. 15. Content from Two Perspectives • Should be a mix of promotional,Overall program informational, transactional over time content • Balance broadcast, segmented, triggered • Frequency, sequencing, cadence • Balance of text and images • Different templates for different types of Individual messagesmessage content • Dynamic, temporally relevant • Mix of static and rich media
    16. 16. Three Flavors of Email Broadcast Segmented Triggered • Announcement, • Targeted based on • Customized to an newsletter, etc. specific subscriber individual based groupings on actions or • Entire list receives • Customized by or timing the same message sent only to specific segments of the • Re-active vs. pro- total active| 16
    17. 17. Customer Email Program Example• Hewlett Packard monthly newsletter – HP Newsgram sent to all registered customers – Clearly-displayed issue month and table of contents – Value-added: o Free projects o Interactivity, video o HP Daily Surprise o Cross-sells HP products too 17
    18. 18. Other Message Types• HP deploys a good mix of newsletter, sales promotions (deals), and holiday greeting emails 18
    19. 19. Apply and Align Messaging to the Customer Lifecycle• Each stage of the customer lifecycle naturally lends itself to specific email messages• Use them to shift and direct the dialog Pre-conversion Conversion (All Post-Conversion Relationship-Building (Prospects) Customers)• Invites to engage • Thank-you • Tier-specific messaging • Bouncebacks• Email subscribe • Welcome/onboarding • By RFM • Loyalty program welcome/first • Up-sells/cross-sells • Surveys • Purchase anniversary purchase incentive • News and info • Renewals/reminders • Life event (birthday)• Cart Abandonment • Demographic-specific • “Best customer” offers • Reactivation• Browse Abandonment offers campaigns • By gender, age
    20. 20. Mix it Up• Storyboard your email program – Some message frequency and sequencing can be planned, but allow for triggered – Create a flowchart illustrating message types, timing, frequency• Don’t be “the friend who only calls when you need something” – Although accustomed to heavy promotional message volume from retailers, consumers also want conversation, community, news and fun
    21. 21. Compelling Email Content Ideas• Evolve, supplement or refresh your static HTML or plain text email with – Animation – Video – Temporally-relevant campaigns – Dynamic Content• Movement and multi-media = more clicks• Time, place and quantity-specific content = greater relevancy = more clicks
    22. 22. Animation• Use minimally and strategically• Movement is eye- catching• Can enable more content than static images
    23. 23. Video in Email – Two Approaches• Link to self- or web-hosted • Preferred for now due to spam blocking, filtering, image rendering and streaming video support issues• Streaming video into inbox • Video or animation streams into the message over an open connection to the Internet • Requires no plug-ins or media players on subscriber end, works with any ESP • Requires HTML5-based message design • Current environments supporting video in email: • Windows Live Mail (Hotmail) (H.264) • Apple iPad mail client (H.264) • Blackberry (BOLT 2.1) (OGG Theora) • Apple iPhone mail client (H.264) • Apple Mail 4 (H.264) • Thunderbird (OGG Theora)• Leading current solution: Liveclicker (www.liveclicker.com)
    24. 24. Self- or Web-Hosted Video• Video in email tips: – Alert them that the email contains video • Subject line and headlines • Put video front and center • Play/pause console should be visible – Host in your domain or – Host on your YouTube channel for longer shelf life
    25. 25. Streaming Video into Message• Liveclicker’s Video Email Express is integrated with several ESPs – Generates simple HTML code for inclusion in email – They host and deliver video content• Style Campaign also handles video in email (sans audio) Example courtesy of StyleCampaign.com
    26. 26. Temporally-Relevant Content• Beyond seasonality and holidays, leverage major events, news – But, tread cautiously or know your audience
    27. 27. Dynamic Content• Big and getting bigger• Content served can be based either on: – database-attributes (i.e. gender) • Aka “custom publishing” in which you predestine certain content for certain users based on database profile attributes – real-time response behavior (open on mobile) • Use location, time and device to sense what should be served • Aka evolutionary optimization• Not just for email content – can define landing pages too
    28. 28. Time-Based Dynamic Content• Movable Ink’s technology allows emails like this one (to a conference attendee) – to display live counts of people attending the event – To have an offer that changes by the date or time Example courtesy of Movable Ink
    29. 29. Other Dynamic Content Approaches• This retail message displays – location-specific store information – Real-time inventory updates – Time-based offer updates Example courtesy of Movable Ink
    30. 30. Content Key Takeaways• When it comes to your email program, serve a multi-course meal, not the same dish over and over again• Greater message variety = less predictability = higher interest and engagement – Continuity programs create high trust, so some email should come on a regular schedule (newsletter) – However the unpredictable gets noticed more• Static HTML is fine, but with HTML5 video in email is again possible• One size-fits-all is out. Triggered and dynamic content will dominate email of the future
    31. 31. Contact Information• Karen Talavera • Synchronicity Marketing (www.synchronicitymarketing.com) • Email: karen@synchronicitymarketing.com • Phone: (561) 967-9665 • Facebook: www.facebook.com/SynchronicityMarketing • Twitter: @SyncMarketing• Austin Bliss • FreshAddress (www.freshaddress.com) • Email: austin@freshaddress.com • Phone: (617) 965-4500 • Twitter: @FreshAddress

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