Email Marketing Layout and Design - Content and Subject Lines

As we come to the end of this blog series on email marketing "Layout and Design", we'll finish up by taking a look at the content section and focus briefly on subject lines. A final blog will follow with a summary of the key points under this topic.

When it comes to email content, think about what action you want the recipient to take based on the information provided. This prompt should be one of the first things they see. Whatever this action is, it should be placed in a menu bar near the top of the email. This is the email equivalent of a letterhead, so the important information should be the most prominent (remember not to embed this in an image unless clearly visible elsewhere!).

Call to action:

You cannot assume that recipients will click a link, particularly below the fold. Therefore you need to direct them to click to activate the next step. It is best to include your call to actions throughout the email in various formats (buttons, click-through on images etc.). Ensure that there is a clear call to action in a preview pane, and make sure you indicate different channels for the client to get in touch, not just email.

Right tone for the audience:

As mentioned earlier in the section on personalisation, make sure you are adopting the right tone for your audience (B2B tending to be more formal perhaps than B2C, note cultural differences etc.). Your emails should also be in a language that your target audience will be comfortable with (technical versus descriptive, young demographic versus old etc.).

Use links to direct traffic to the core content:

Some newsletters benefit from longer editorial, however consider also using the newsletter as a "directory" of links with relevant, brief content that directs the reader to your site. Keep the text to one or two lines per section keep the message as short and actionable as possible. Once on your site, prospects can explore your offer and get to know your business by themselves.

Subject Lines

Writing successful subject lines is vital and should be both carefully planned and fully tested. This is the first impression the recipient will get so it's imperative to get it right. If it's boring, meaningless or out of context, then it will end up "deleted" (assuming it gets past the spam filter).

Here are some tips and examples to consider:

In the next section we will do a quick summary review of email marketing "Layout and Design".