In the next part of our email campaign management guide, let’s consider what it takes to write and design the perfect email marketing campaign.
7. Craft your subject line
The first thing your subscribers see in their inbox is the subject line of your message. That means you have a few seconds to grab their attention and get them to open your email.
Subject lines should be kept short—less than 50 characters is best practice—to ensure it displays properly on all devices. Mobile screens tend to shorten the number of characters that appear in an inbox, so it’s helpful to test your subject lines (we’ll talk more about testing in a bit).
Write subject lines that tell your audience what they’ll get when they open your emails. Personalizing your subject line with the recipient’s first name can show you’re not simply sending a generic message. But beware of spam trigger words that can cause your emails to not land in the inbox.
Finally, consider your brand’s personality. If you often use witty language when talking about your brand, your subject line can be clever. However, don’t try to click-bait someone into opening your email with a subject line that doesn’t match your brand voice. Subscribers can be turned off by that and send your messages straight to the trash.
8. Write your email copy
Following your email marketing calendar, you already know what each message should entail. Conceptualize the theme of your content that relates to your goal, appeals to your audience, and fits the call to action (CTA).
Start with a headline that hooks your audience and entices people to continue reading. You want readers to get comfortable first, so address them by name. And keep your email copy short with a couple of main points.
You can use a personal story or piece of content that’s valuable to capture attention. Or try a short poll, survey, GIF, or video with a sentence or two.
If you are writing a long-form email, make sure the copy is scannable for your readers. Use subheads and short paragraphs or bullet points to convey your message.
9. Use a strong CTA
Consider the primary action you want your subscribers to take after opening your email. Do you want them to sign up for an event? Follow your brand pages on social media? Buy a product?
While you don’t want to pitch too soon, you should ask your readers to take action at least twice in your email copy. Place your CTA near the start and at the end of your email. If you can, consider a third placement in the middle, but don’t overdo it in a short email.
If you’re a B2B marketer, this is the perfect time to offer a free ebook or consultation sign up—depending on where this email falls in the customer journey. Meanwhile, B2C brands may provide links to relevant products customers are searching for on their site that month, or a previously searched product by that subscriber (using personalized dynamic content areas within the email).
10. Design an appealing email
If your email looks poorly executed or unprofessional, it reflects badly on your brand. It can also cause people to stop reading.
Before copy or design begins, share the concept and details of the email with the email designer. Both the designer and copywriter can work together to craft an appealing email that meets your brand’s needs and fits the campaign strategy.
First, ensure you are using a responsive email template that adjusts to the size of your reader’s preferred device. Several email marketing platforms—like Salesforce Marketing Cloud and MailChimp—offer mobile-responsive email templates that require minimal coding or brand design to make it your own.
Take into account any coding limitations within the template you’re using. And don’t forget to have a fallback design that provides alternative text for non-supportive email clients.
11. Don’t forget alt text
An important thing to note is many people disable images within their messages. Meaning, your beautifully designed email will display as text-only content with blocks where images should be.
Instead of accepting this, use the space given to you and provide alt text describing what the image shows and why it’s relevant to the email. A good description allows subscribers to visualize the image and understand why you included it in your design.
However, you should avoid hiding information in your image that’s not reflected in the image alt text. As a result, your subscribers can miss the context of your message.
Continue learning about email campaign management
Check out the additional parts of our full email campaign management guide:
- Preface: Every Brand’s Guide to Email Campaign Management Success
- Part 1: Setting up and planning your email campaigns
- Part 2: Choosing the right technology and audience targeting
- Part 3: Crafting the perfect email campaign (you’re currently reading this)
- Part 4: Testing and optimizing your campaigns for further success
Interested in discussing email marketing with an expert? Let’s connect.