Newsletter message content

After you did spend some time on designing the subject line it’s time to create a winning message design. Try to follow these several advices to get a successive email message.

  • Design the first lines of the message so it represents the main idea of entire message. In cases when user cannot view your message never use negative statements at the beginning of your message, like “You cannot read the message? Try our web version”, etc. This is not the best way to motivate your recipients to act. Better place a link on you web version with brief description of what the user going to find if clicks the link provided. This way your message will become more offer-oriented.
  • Every time you elaborate on a new email message you should check it on usability. No matter what the format is, try to place permanent information like email address for subscribers, company name and contact data, etc. at specific places. Make your message easy to navigate even for the most unsophisticated recipients. Make the main information they may need easy to reach. Separate such links as “Change your address/Update your preferences here” and “Unsubscribe here”. Make users free to check/uncheck boxes while choosing their preferences. Don’t be annoying and design the unsubscribe process in one or two-click steps.
  • Keep your HTML message version as clear as possible. Limit image size, use colors that reflect your logo. But don’t overfill your message with gizmos; it may cause different problems to your subscribers.
  • There often may appear problems with HTML and image blocking. It is absolutely necessary to make a text-based version of email and make it easy to switch to it. Use ALT tags to make clear descriptions of every image in your message. Make sure your message’s HTML code doesn’t contain any bad tags so it wouldn’t be blocked by AOL filters, but all the links launch you to the needed landing page. Include the link for web-version of your message.
  • Designing action buttonsĀ use “Order now!” or “Subscribe me!” buttons.
  • Test each message in different browsers before you send it as much as you can to be sure your subscribers can read your message.
  • Include a forward-to-friend link in every message and a print option that links to a printer-friendly version of an HTML message.
  • Try to avoid the use of CSS (cascading style sheets), but if you have to, choose the embedded style also known as inline. The recommendation is to add the style within the body tags.
  • Design your message so that it wouldn’t be wider then 500-650 pixels. If it will be wider the horizontal scrolling will appear, which is not likely. Also you have to consider different user’s screen resolution settings.
  • Avoid using Microsoft Smart Quotes, which can not be properly viewed with different email clients.
  • Make your message more personal. This doesn’t mean you have to write subscriber’s name everywhere in your message, but try to write the message in first person. Such technique will make your message more reliable.

Design improvement is one of the easiest improvements you can make to get an immediate huge return.

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Saturday, August 28th, 2010 : Email Marketing : No Comments

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