Wizemail provides email marketing software solutions and e-shot HTML templates to a wide variety of clients - SMEs, Corporate and Digital Advertising Agencies alike – all with one common requirement, a dynamic, professional, digital marketing team on hand when required.

At least weekly, one of the Wizemail team will post a tip, trick or general email marketing advice here.

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  • How to get the most from your email marketing returns Nov 19, 2019

    The best thing about email marketing is, in some respects, its very worst factor. You were, no doubt, excited at the prospect of lots and lots of data from the returns of a campaign. Then it cascaded in and you had no idea what to do with it all.

    Understanding what the various terms mean is the easy bit; getting useful information is what’s difficult. Let’s take open rates. An email might well be opened without a notification. If the receiver fails to view the images and doesn’t click on anything in the email, it will show as not being opened.

    You might think that an open rate that does not show how many emails were opened is all but useless. You should compare it to previous email marketing campaigns. It will show a trend. If the figure steadily increases then you are getting better.

    The click-through rate is largely similar in that it is a basically a measure of improvement over time. The information allows you to improve over time and that means an increase in return on investment (RoI). Make a change, even a subtle one, and if the figures increase, you have proof you’re doing something right.

    Your RoI comes via completions, and you will think that’s the important factor. You are right, of course, but without open and click-through rates indicating when you are improving, there’s little chance of increasing profits.

    A conversion is when a subscriber completes the purpose of the marketing email. This would include downloading a free pdf, sign-up to a course or to actually purchase something. It is the target of course, but the reasons for the conversions may be more difficult to identify without interpreting the returns.

    The data is not only vital for showing whether a particular email marketing campaign was successful with regards to completion, it is the basis for working out your return on investment. With a simple spreadsheet, one where all variations are included, you can calculate a precise figure for each acquisition.

    Other metrics include the unsubscribe rate, always depressing, the bounce rate, something you can do little about, and the sign-up rate to your email marketing list. You are now drowning in data and have no idea what to address first.

    If you are new to email marketing then there’s lots of advice out there on what to do to increase a specific metric, but at the moment, all you want to do is keep your head above water. This shows your natural instinct is spot on. Where many companies fail is in chasing too many goals, at least in the early stages. The need to make a profit is the one to go for.

    Knowing how much each conversion costs is the first step. The next requirement is to use the returns to reduce this figure, be it by selling more, charging more, or reducing wasted effort.

    Don’t forget, the sole purpose of the deluge of data is to increase your return on investment. Initially, pick the useful bits. The rest are for later.

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  • Advice for SME's with the approach of Brexit Nov 18, 2019

    It is with a degree of embarrassment I admit to publishing, about a year ago, a calendar on the countdown to Brexit. The idea was to point out what small and medium sized email marketing companies needed to do to ensure a smooth transition. My only defence is that I was not the only person to over-anticipate Brexit.

    It is still relevant now, as long as you ignore the publishing date, and is still useful. In the meantime, and there’s been a lot of that, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has progressively updated its Guidance on how to prepare, and included certain resources.

    https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-and-brexit/data-protection-and-brexit-for-small-organisations/

    The point of their Guidance is; “to help small to medium-sized UK businesses and organisations keep personal data flowing with Europe (the EEA) after Brexit.” It starts in a reassuring way for email marketing companies by stating that, in the event of a no-deal Brexit the rules for such organisations will mostly stay the same. You will note that they said mostly, and the rest of the Guidance supports this.

    First the good news. If you are a small to medium sized company which does not send or receive data from the EEA (the EU plus Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein) and have no customers there, then the advice is to ensure you comply with all the recommendations of the GDPR and the Data Protection Act 2018. It is possible that, once the final details are resolved, small modifications might be required. You should keep an eye on the ICO website as nothing is written in stone.

    If a business or organisation in the EEA is sending you personal data, then it will still need to comply with EU data protection laws. You will need to take steps to ensure that the data can continue to flow. For most, Standard Contractual Clauses (SCCs) would seem to be the best option. The Guidance explains SCCS and contains an interactive tool to help.

    https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-and-brexit/keep-data-flowing-from-the-eea-to-the-uk-interactive-tool/

    The situation is only a little more complex if you operate in the EEA as well. You will need to comply with the EU regulations and also the UK ones. You will have to discover which European data protection regulator will be your ‘lead supervisory authority’.

    In most circumstances a representative in the EEA will be required to act as your local representative. This cannot be your data protection officer. Again, the ICO has a comprehensive guide to local representatives.

    https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-and-brexit/data-protection-if-theres-no-brexit-deal/the-gdpr/european-representatives/

    Email marketing is, of course, personal data heavy but the ICO considers that we will not have to take any extra steps. This had the caveat of ‘at this stage’ and is an important limitation.

    The common theme though the Guidance is that, if you have personal data, you should monitor the ICO website for any updates and changes. The situation is unlikely to be resolved soon. The Guidance rewards careful reading. Anything that is not clear as to the actions required needs to be resolved as soon as possible.

    Review your privacy information and documentation. Record all steps you take, including any minor changes required.
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  • Using Landing Pages To Improve Conversion Nov 18, 2019

    You might well be like the rest us. We all feel overwhelmed by the returns from email marketing campaigns. Even concentrating on one aspect, such as landing page returns, can still make you wonder what on earth you’re supposed to do with all the data.

    The difference between email marketing and most other forms is the accuracy and speed of the returns from campaigns. If we don’t make the most of it, we lose that advantage, so a little bit of effort gives excellent returns.

    A subscriber clicking through to a landing page shows that the rest of the marketing email has done its job. It’s solely about conversions now, whether you want them to buy a single item, or commit to a longer term relationship.

    The most important metric, you will not be surprised to discover, is the percentage of visitors who convert. There is no optimum figure; there are so many variables that it makes comparisons with those of other companies nonsensical. What it can be compared to is a previous return of yours for a similar product.

    If the percentage of conversions drops, then there must be a reason. It is up to you to discover what it is. Remember that this is a percentage, so any failure of the marketing email which limits click-throughs can be ignored. It’s a fault with the landing page.

    The first question to ask is what has changed. It might be something simple, such as this campaign being rushed. Was the copy poorly prepared, or the images not as specific as normal? Was it a clone of a previous campaign? If so, your subscribers have seen it all before.

    What were the demographics of those who completed? If they had something in common which wasn’t as numerous as in those who did not, then this gives a clue.
    The important thing to remember is that there’s always a reason. Find out what it is and you can get back to previous levels. Most importantly, the same goes for an increase in the conversion rate. It shows you’ve improved. Find the reason and improve the percentage over your norm.
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  • How SME's Can Prepare For Brexit Nov 14, 2019

    Excuse me for getting personal, but Brexit, for me, is rather like waiting for my daughter to leave home. We didn’t particularly want it to happen. However, it was obvious that it would come about eventually. There were a lot of false starts.

    At the time of writing it seems probable that the election is the start of the final countdown. We can’t be precise as to the form Brexit will take, so it is risky to give advice, but the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has proved itself willing to give it a go. Their suggestions will be welcomed by everyone in email marketing.

    The ICO has published a Guidance. It consists of a number of pages on their website to guide businesses, particularly small to medium ones, as how to prepare for business post Brexit. It is subdivided by way of where you do business and whom you do business with.

    https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-and-brexit/data-protection-and-brexit-for-small-organisations/

    If you do not sell to anyone in the EEA (the EU plus Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein), nor import personal data from there, they suggest that all you have to do is conform to the GDPR, as you no doubt do already. The government anticipates that there will be no additional requirements if you export data to the EEA.

    It is expected that the processes of importing personal data from the EEA will be eased by arrangements the government will negotiate. If you import such data you will have to conform to the EU requirements and, for us in email marketing, it seems probable that the best way of facilitating this will be by way of Standard Contractual Clauses (SCCS).

    The ICO have published a handy tool to explain SCCs in the Guidance.

    https://ico.org.uk/for-organisation...wing-from-the-eea-to-the-uk-interactive-tool/

    For those companies with a base in the EEA, things are slightly more complex and the extra requirements are explained fully in the Guidance. It is fairly straightforward and much of it is predictable.

    The Guidance is reassuring for email marketing businesses. There is one overriding principle in all its advice, and that is that all businesses, including your one, should visit the ICO website frequently to check for any updates.

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  • What you can learn from your first email marketing campaigns Nov 5, 2019

    It’s an exciting time when trying something new. It is normally tinged with a bit of self-doubt; after all, what if you make a mess of it? A reassuring aspect of starting out in email marketing is that there is lots of advice and help out there, both online and from your email marketing service providers.

    They will have told you how easy it is, because it is. Yet when you receive the returns from your first email marketing campaigns and they are a disappointment, you might feel it is all beyond you.

    You will probably have a fairly small email marketing list so it is unlikely you will have been able to target your campaign with precision. Further, you are new to them, and they to you, so there will be a degree of reluctance on their behalf to trust you. On top of that, you will have little information on your subscribers.

    In other words, your returns should be measured against others starting up. Your open rate might have been poor compared to those of the big email marketing companies, but pretty good for someone of your expertise. You now have much more data on your subscribers and it is behavioural, the best there is.

    Your next campaign will be different, as it will take into account the new data. For instance, there will be those who failed to open the email. This is not as bad as it seems. Experiment by changing the Subject Line, or perhaps the timing of the send. Is there any improvement?

    Those who clicked through to a landing page but failed to complete show that you need to look at the design of that page. Those who opened the email but failed to do anything else are more problematical.

    Is there anything they have in common such as, for instance, the way they subscribed to your email marketing list? If so, they can be put in their own group.

    In other words, something useful always comes from a campaign. Don’t reject the data just because you didn’t sell as much as you expected. What you’ve now got is hard-earned data.

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  • What's Wrong With Your First Few Campaigns? Nov 5, 2019

    You anticipated a killing. You’ve built up a small but, you believe, good quality email marketing list. The first few, low level, campaigns went as well as you expected, and you learnt a lot from them; enough, you feel, to try something special. The offer was one you’d been planning for ages, one destined to set up your business. Yet it was a failure in your eyes, hardly better than the previous ones.

    If it’s any comfort, we’ve all been there.

    You probably will be wondering if email marketing is not all it’s been built up to be, or whether it was an error on your behalf. Perhaps it’s more difficult than you thought.

    Let’s look at what might have happened.

    1/ Targeting means leaving some off the list

    Just because you have a small email marketing list does not mean you should send everyone the email. To get good returns you need to focus your campaign on those who might want to buy. Some would probably already have one, others might be after something in blue. There are some who, critically, might not want one. You need to target your campaigns.

    2/ What about the design of the email

    You will have had a selection of email marketing templates to choose from. You checked through them all and came across one that stood out. You thought it perfect. However, what you like is of no consequence. You probably didn’t pick one that appealed to all of those you sent it to. No design is that good.

    3/ There are so many variables

    You will have limited information on, for instance, the times that your subscribers prefer to receive email. You can guess that a B2B one might not be best received at 9.30 Monday morning. There is never one single time perfect for all on B2C. Then there’s the gap between the previous marketing email and your big one; too long or too short?

    4/ What about support

    Don’t look at email marketing on its own. Mention the offer to come on the website, in the newsletter, and on any interface between you and a subscriber. Build anticipation. Get them excited.

    5/ Learn from you campaign

    Accept that, if you got a slightly better return on your big campaign compared to the previous one, you are doing well. Results take time to build as you need to gain information from each. A higher click-through rate shows that you got their attention. A low level of unsubscribes shows that your subscribers still trust you are worth sticking with. A low open rate can be viewed more positively than a high one. You can, after a suitable period, resend the email with a different Subject Line. You will then see what attracts different subscribers.

    Every email marketing campaign provides you with data on the subscribers to your email marketing list. As your information level increases it should modify how you design and present your campaigns. You should improve steadily, so don’t expect a great increase from one campaign to the next.

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  • How To Produce An Email Marketing Campaign To Sell Premium Products Oct 31, 2019

    I’ve got a friend who is into open source software. Her laptops use Linux-based operating systems, and all her software is free. Avoid admitting to using Microsoft Office. Should to say so, you’ll be asked why you pay so much for a product which is all but duplicated in its effectiveness by free Libre Office. To an extent she’s right; it’s perfectly adequate for most people.

    Email marketing is not all about cutting prices to the bone. It can be used to convince your subscribers to pay that little bit extra for a product. It can’t be all that difficult. After all, I’ve got MS Office on all my computers. Fair enough, I am a professional writer, but I’d be the first to admit, in about 500 words, that free office suites provide all I need.

    With all the data you have, you should know the trigger points for the subscribers to your email marketing lists. You will also know that you’ll struggle to convince some to go beyond price alone. The remainder are the ones to target. All you have to do is work out what will appeal to them. There’s quite a menu.

    One classic is reducing the price to a monthly, weekly or even daily cost. Who hasn’t read about a premium product costing ‘less than a cup of coffee a day’? It’s probably been done hundreds of times, to the extent that most people are aware that such an analogy really means £800 or more annually. We need to try something more likely to convince.

    You could hide prices, only revealing them at the completion point, or, perhaps, in a small font under the image. It’s a dangerous tactic as the former causes irritation, and the latter might make customers wonder what else you’ve hidden.

    You’ve got to be open and truthful when charging premium prices. Trying to confuse those on your email marketing list will lead to unsubscribes. Instead, tell them why your product costs more. It’s more reliable than the competition, your after-sales service is superb, it looks better, lasts longer, is the leader in its field. If it’s all true, they’ll pay.

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  • Gaining subscribers to an email marketing list via a squeeze page Oct 30, 2019

    The one thing in email marketing is that nothing is set in stone. However, we can come very close to being didactic in the case of squeeze pages. Because they have just one clear function, to gain subscribers to an email marketing list.

    1/ Don’t give away too much

    This is often put as ‘offer less than you think you should’, but let’s ensure you know how much you should offer. You might have just the thing that will change their lives forever. If so, then it is valuable to them. You will want to charge them for that.

    Keep it simple and easy to take in. An ebook that gives one item of advice, and describes how to implement it, is as effective in gaining subscribers as one that runs into hundreds of pages.

    2/ Keep form fields brief

    You want as much information as you can get, but too many questions requiring a degree of effort on their behalf will put off potential subscribers. You will gain more dependable information from every email marketing campaign. It’s a balance of course, but start by favouring just the minimum.

    3/ Ensure they know you are giving them something of value

    Don’t oversell your gift. If it’s a 10-page pdf, it won’t solve many of their problems or change their lives. However, words like gift, prize, and give will tend to encourage them. Be clear what they are signing up for of course, but emphasise the offers they will receive.

    4/ Keep it simple

    A video might be the most appropriate medium to present the wonderful prize they’ll receive, but it should be short, simple and just one click away. Don’t give them a choice. They will want a short route to their present.

    5/ Target

    It’s what email marketing is all about. You will have a target audience. Ensure the wording, the image, the medium and the gift are what will attract them. Don’t just clear your shelves of remaindered products. Ensure the present is something that they want or believe they need.

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  • What’s the point of a squeeze page for email marketing Oct 30, 2019

    We need, first of all, to clarify what is meant by a squeeze page. It’s a landing page with the sole purpose of getting visitors to subscribe to an email marketing list or an enewsletter. The big difference between it and any other page which contains a sign-up form, is the word sole. It is dedicated to that one function.

    I would be the first to admit that limiting the purpose of a targeted page is not normally a sensible tactic, but in the case of squeeze pages, it is effective. The page can, and should, be designed to do that one thing. Anything else is to be ignored.

    I heard a squeeze page described as an ultimatum. You will do what I want or you will go. It’s best to be a bit subtler than that, but the idea should be at the front of your mind when working out what to put in it. Leave no alternatives.

    Such a requirement will, in certain ways, ease the design phase. There will be no clutter. Any inclusion, image or copy, will be lean and direct, and the same will apply to the heading, colour and features. Keep it simple and keep it on message.

    You will be offering something in payment for their email address. What this should be is the big question, and will depend on the targeted group of course. Oddly, many offer information which is easily available elsewhere. I’ve seen promises: such as regular updates on law, inside information, up to date advice on investments, and more along the same line.

    Ebooks are popular, at least with email marketing companies after subscribers. I’ve got a folder specifically for such items. Whether they are as popular with your visitors is another matter.

    Whatever you are offering, you want to make it the main feature of the page, one that is seen as soon as it appears. ‘Guidelines on how to increase completions by 58%’. We’d all like to do that. I wasn’t convinced by the 58% at the time, and even less so when I read the ebook. Ensure you deliver what you promised. The unsubscribe button will catch the dishonest.

    Research of squeeze pages is about as easy as it gets. They are everywhere. If you follow the links, somewhere you will be promised the answer to all your problems if you’d just subscribe to an email marketing list. I can reassure you that they appear much of a muchness. This does not mean the design and layout will work for you.

    Beware of anything that looks generic; they have little to teach you. Search for those that are a bit different. What is it that caught your eye? Is it something that might appeal to your target audience? Unusual can excite, as long as it is done for a purpose.

    Pick a number of styles, perhaps five, and test them. Sooner or later, one will show out as the best. Work out why it is so attractive, and then incorporate the factors into your squeeze pages.

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  • Don't Mention Going Green Oct 29, 2019

    In an online world, where it is so easy for customers to compare prices, any edge, even a slight one, is to be grabbed by both hands. One of the easiest seeming routes is to appear ‘better’ than your competitors by having lower prices, quicker service, or, perhaps, going greener in your email marketing.

    The idea of sustainability, going carbon neutral and not harming the environment, gives positives all round. Not only that, you could feel good about yourself and your company.

    Will you feel quite so smug if all you are doing is not using up quite so many resources, slightly reducing you carbon footprint, or a minimal reduction in the degree of harm to the environment? That’s what many companies are boasting about, although not in those precise words.

    If your next email marketing campaign will grandly profess that you are greener than your competitors, you might well be clicking into a minefield. It’s a risky stance to take. Not only is there the concern that you might not have done everything you said you have, but that all your costly improvements will only generate criticisms on social media.

    An international company boasted of their initiative to reduce plastics and general packaging. Yet their boxes still contained vast amounts of plastic. Memes on social media were quite funny, so gained a momentum all of their own. It was fun for some.

    If your next email marketing campaign you are going to reduce your non-recyclable packaging, then say just that. Don’t suggest you have gone green, or 100% plastic free if the parcels will have plastic in or around them.

    You might think I’m making obvious points. I am of course, but so many companies fail to do the basics. Ensuring what you promise is delivered is a basic requirement of email marketing, and it matters. You know that if you build anticipation, then even the slightest shortfall will create resentment and the loss of a star or two in the reviews.

    There would appear to be little point in being vague and providing a link to an explanatory page on your website. That’s not to say those who enjoy criticising will look for reasons not to.

    Going green can cost. You use your present packaging for reasons, and one of those is price. You need to recoup that somehow and, hopefully, increase your RoI. It benefits no one if the greenest email marketing company is the one that folds.

    The suggestion is that 75% of the public prefer paper packaging over plastic. We all know that pushing paper into the bin with the green lid is not negative impact, but customers like it.

    If you are opting for paper packaging, then say just that. Don’t mention going green. Go light on the recyclable bit as the public is generally well informed as to the niceties. Sustainability might be possible if you can back it up. And if you can, do so.

    There are any number of benefits for going green. Go for it, but go carefully.

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  • Admit It; You Will Never Be Green Oct 15, 2019

    Social media is going through one of its periods of attacks on false claims of being green. We should accept that it is impossible for email marketing to be completely green in the sense of having no environmental impact. Servers, the requirement for precious metals giving the need for mines, plastics everywhere and transport of goods, would require a forest or two to negate the impact.

    Because of presentations to the UN by a young, charismatic environmentalist, being carbon neutral and the need for recycling has been in the news almost constantly over recent weeks. Even Brexit has had to fight against it for headlines.

    Whether or not you accept the proposition that global warming is man-made is immaterial. Being profligate with resources can have a negative impact on your profits. Whilst Amazon has ridden the social media criticism of its packaging, a smaller company might have taken a serious knock.

    Regardless of the rights and wrongs of activists, ignoring the pressure to go green might well result in your company being ‘outed’. Profits in email marketing are tight enough without scoring an own goal. The bottom line is profit. Is lowering your environmental impact an earner?

    The opportunities for something to boast of will vary depending on your product. One instance which is rather obvious, so much so that it features in headlines repeatedly, is ink cartridges. Complex plastic creations heading for landfill will negate a lot of positives you might implement.

    The problem is that you can’t make any claim in an email marketing campaign of vague community responsibility when sending out cartridges packed in vast volumes of plastic. Using recyclable paper instead is a good step, but it is not enough to suggest a conversion.

    Any claim of being green must be evidence based. Say precisely what you have done and itemise its positive effects. Don’t even think of using the word green as it is red rag material. It’s devalued in any case. If you can show you’ve reduced the volume of packaging by 15%, then that’s all you should say.

    On the other hand, broadcast the positives and show you’re proud of them. ​

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  • Always Modify An Email Template Oct 15, 2019

    I don’t like being prescriptive, but it is not a good idea to use an email marketing template ‘straight out of the box’. It will have been designed by a professional, and as you’ve had no graphic art experience, you might not feel the need to prove it by messing it up.

    There’s only so much a professional designer can do without knowing those on your email marketing lists. That’s where you come in. It’s up to you to add those final little twists to the template which will not only make it just right for you, but just right for your subscribers. There are basic traps to avoid though.

    1/ Balance

    You need to ensure you get the relative proportions of text and images spot on. It will vary according to the product and the subscribers you are sending it to. Some people respond to pictures, other like the details. Always check it on a mobile.

    2/ Easy to follow

    Don’t bore your readers. Keep line length on the lower end of reasonable. Have short sentences and short paragraphs. Ignore what you were taught at college.

    There’s nothing wrong with a one sentence paragraph.

    3/ Typefaces

    Many advise no more than three typefaces. Others suggest this is extravagant. Vary fonts instead, using bold and italic. Resize the type, but keep one size for one purpose so readers know what the function is.

    4/ Declutter

    Limit content to the absolute necessities. White space is an essential, so ensure you have plenty of that. Leading in type, i.e. the space between lines of text, is a difficult balance. Look at others’ email marketing designs that look good and copy.

    5/ Colour

    Colour is a subject in itself. For the moment, view your emails on phones and tablets too see what looks right. Ask others, as colour appreciation can be personal.

    6/ Movement

    Not video, but the way a reader’s eyes move from place to place in the email. Make them go step by step so they see what you want them to.

    7/ Readability

    Even if you like Art Deco, you should not base an email marketing campaign design on it unless you know that the subscribers will like it also, and that’s highly unlikely.

    Most importantly, modern design trends, whilst they look modern, are not normally scannable. Fractured text, liquid text, distorted imagery, and other recent trends, are all quite stunning but are all difficult to read for most people. The purpose behind such styles is to impress and not to communicate using words.

    8/ Your target

    Each design should be targeted towards a particular email marketing list, be it by the colours, the degree of white space, the images or anything else mentioned above. In other words, you can modify or ignore any of the previous points if you have a reason to.

    Don’t be dismissive of email marketing templates because they are free. Nor should you take them as perfect just because a professional designer produced them. Treat them as, in fact, templates to be modified to suit your needs.

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  • Always Modify An Email Template Oct 15, 2019

    I don’t like being prescriptive, but it is not a good idea to use an email marketing template ‘straight out of the box’. It will have been designed by a professional, and as you’ve had no graphic art experience, you might not feel the need to prove it by messing it up.

    There’s only so much a professional designer can do without knowing those on your email marketing lists. That’s where you come in. It’s up to you to add those final little twists to the template which will not only make it just right for you, but just right for your subscribers. There are basic traps to avoid though.

    1/ Balance

    You need to ensure you get the relative proportions of text and images spot on. It will vary according to the product and the subscribers you are sending it to. Some people respond to pictures, other like the details. Always check it on a mobile.

    2/ Easy to follow

    Don’t bore your readers. Keep line length on the lower end of reasonable. Have short sentences and short paragraphs. Ignore what you were taught at college.

    There’s nothing wrong with a one sentence paragraph.

    3/ Typefaces

    Many advise no more than three typefaces. Others suggest this is extravagant. Vary fonts instead, using bold and italic. Resize the type, but keep one size for one purpose so readers know what the function is.

    4/ Declutter

    Limit content to the absolute necessities. White space is an essential, so ensure you have plenty of that. Leading in type, i.e. the space between lines of text, is a difficult balance. Look at others’ email marketing designs that look good and copy.

    5/ Colour

    Colour is a subject in itself. For the moment, view your emails on phones and tablets too see what looks right. Ask others, as colour appreciation can be personal.

    6/ Movement

    Not video, but the way a reader’s eyes move from place to place in the email. Make them go step by step so they see what you want them to.

    7/ Readability

    Even if you like Art Deco, you should not base an email marketing campaign design on it unless you know that the subscribers will like it also, and that’s highly unlikely.

    Most importantly, modern design trends, whilst they look modern, are not normally scannable. Fractured text, liquid text, distorted imagery, and other recent trends, are all quite stunning but are all difficult to read for most people. The purpose behind such styles is to impress and not to communicate using words.

    8/ Your target

    Each design should be targeted towards a particular email marketing list, be it by the colours, the degree of white space, the images or anything else mentioned above. In other words, you can modify or ignore any of the previous points if you have a reason to.

    Don’t be dismissive of email marketing templates because they are free. Nor should you take them as perfect just because a professional designer produced them. Treat them as, in fact, templates to be modified to suit your needs.

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  • Simple Ways To Modify An Email Template Oct 15, 2019

    We live in an exciting time for computer graphics. Designers are as willing as ever to experiment and show just how good they are. More remarkably, companies are willing to try their creations. We see explosions of ideas and trends. Some of the designs fill one with wonder.

    You probably think there’s an however coming, and you’re right. The multitude of design trends brings with it problems for those of us who need to target marketing emails and websites. Graphic art can be divisive. Some attract some while repelling others. How can we know which design innovations to follow?

    The answer is both simple and depressing; you should avoid them for anything to do with email marketing.

    I’m not suggesting that you centre all type with images in the middle of pages. Be modern by all means, please do, but ensure designs do what we need them to. I love fluid type, especially the way it can cascade across the screen, but its message is often lost, other than that of being cool.

    Design can, of itself, be a message. Fractured type, with its clever arrangement, is saying ‘I’m modern and cutting edge’, but the words are lost. It is not scannable.

    There are other ways of appearing modern. Colour, for instance, comes in fashion waves, and various shades appeal to different people at different times. You need to keep up with trends.

    This is where you need to use email marketing templates with a degree of inspiration, although thankfully not too much. A template is a base, a foundation on which to build. Most of the structure is there, but it needs dressing.

    The three things to experiment with are typeface, images and, as already mentioned, colour. This might not seem much, but you can change the whole appearance of a marketing email by going from Times to Verdana, or from a vibrant red banner to a cool blue one.

    Your email marketing templates are perfect for changing. Keep the basic layout by all means, but alter it to ensure it will attract your target audience. Nothing is sacred apart from it being scannable. ​

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  • Your First Lead Magnet Campaign Oct 15, 2019

    We need subscribers. It is a certainty in the confusing world of starting out in email marketing. The problem is that generating them is neither easy nor cheap. You can buy-in lists, but many feel this does not normally give value for money. It might be better to find those who want what you are promoting.

    One of the most popular methods, because it works so well, is to use a lead magnet. These are gifts, ostensibly free, where the persons have to identify themselves and give their details, including email addresses; leads in fact. You can ask them to sign up to one of your lists. This can be an enewsletter, email marketing list, or something else; it matters not. We are after getting them on board.

    Despite the various types of lead magnet there are some features common to all of them. After all, regardless of what your offer is, you need to get them to react to you in some way, be it visit your website, your stand at the show, or be tempted by an offer you are promoting. You should:

    1/ Target your campaigns

    Work out who you are after by producing a detailed description of them. Know what they do, what they want and, most importantly, what problems they have.

    2/ Don’t limit yourself

    It can be all too easy to be over-precise in your targeting. Cast your net fairly widely in order to attract those who are a little different from your assumptions. It is easy enough to eliminate later those who are there by mistake or along for the ride.

    3/ Target your gift

    If you know whom you are after, you can offer something that will attract them whilst leaving those whom you don’t want unmoved. Offer solutions to their problems.

    4/ Use multiple platforms

    If someone is looking for the best epicyclic trunnion for the price, then you can produce a blog which shows the advantages of the one you stock. A YouTube video showing one being fitted will attract hits. Facebook offers lots of opportunities for attracting just the ones you want.

    5/ Don’t be stingy

    You’ve had to work for what you’ve got, so it might be difficult for you to throw money away to people who aren’t even your customers. To lower your blood pressure, work out the cost of each subscriber to your email marketing list. That’s money you are spending without generating any sense of gratitude.

    6/ Just a click on an icon to spread the word

    Make it easy for a person to share the link. Giving presents, even when it cost the person nothing, is a way of making them feel good about themselves. Have prominent sharing buttons.

    7/ Be clear what they are signing up for

    Don’t give anything away without, at least, an email address. Be clear as to what they are signing up for. Have sign-ups for an email marketing list on the landing page.

    8/ Ensure they are grateful

    Point out just how great your offer is.

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