Email marketing continues to grow in popularity. Compared to other marketing tactics, it is easier and cheaper to understand why our mailboxes are the daily target of electronic newsletters and company announcements. With more customers being reached by email than ever before, it’s important that your message gets noticed. It’s one thing to provide valuable information to the public, but another to facilitate it. After all, if an email doesn’t command immediate attention, it’s likely to be ignored in favor of the next message.
So how do you look good AND get results? Email marketing is not an exact science, but there are a few basic suggestions to improve your success.
- Pick a model and stick with it. With so much competing for our attention, we’ve trained ourselves to look for easy, familiar messages. Choose an email template that provides a recurring format for your readers – they shouldn’t have to figure out how to scroll through the newsletter every month. Simply placing the table of contents in the same place each time can reduce guesswork.
- Make a short appearance. Just because copywriters charge per word doesn’t mean your text should be an exaggeration. Design your emails concisely so that the average reader can quickly scan them and decide whether they want to continue reading, send it to a friend, or move to another section.
- Make some space. The general purpose of an electronic newsletter or promotional email is to inform, not confuse. Leave white space between sections and paragraphs so the reader can easily distinguish between them and decide where to go next. If a message looks like a giant block of text with no end in sight, readers probably won’t be interested in mentally splitting it up.
- Consider the font. Choosing a font is similar to finding the best handwriting for a note. For example, a cursive font is hard to read and usually unexpected in email settings. It’s also important to match the font to the “feel” or tone of your message. Times New Roman is more formal and structured, while Arial is more casual. Commonly recommended fonts are Calibri, Corbel and Verdana.
- Use columns. Columns are easier to read than a wide text area. Dividing the data into vertical sections makes eye scanning much easier. Also, you can start the second article at the top of the column instead of requiring the reader to scroll down after the first article. A two-column format is generally recommended.
It’s hard enough to stand out from a crowded inbox. Fortunately, there are some basic guidelines to help you avoid the dreaded “delete” and “unsubscribe” buttons. Take the time to review your email templates and make the necessary changes to ensure you get the most out of your email marketing and stay in front of your valuable customers.