TL;DR - I kind of skipped everything

Admit it, you glanced at an email you meant to read but had to set your phone down to attend real life. In this day and age of notifications, events, social media, games and actual work, even the strongest of us can have technological ADD. It's hard because so many people are vying for our attention! 

In this third installment of the Email Breakdown I am talking about how to best convey your message - simply and quickly. 

Blog posts are great for writing that miniature novel, but emails need to short and to the point. If I can't read your intention in the first three lines, rewrite it. When writing emails for clients I tend to have redundant information. I put the same link in three places in three ways. Why? Because I have no idea how far someone is going to get, and I'm not betting they are going to make it to the bottom. 

 This is a Footer, but illustrates that I doubt you read any of that. 

This is a Footer, but illustrates that I doubt you read any of that. 

Email Outline

The best way to focus your story is to break it down into a few sentences. If you ever wrote essays in school this might sound familiar. 

Intro.

Topic Sentence. 

Body Sentence.

Closing. 

Intro. Difference between an essay and an email is the Intro doesn't even have to be words. It can be an image, a "Hey So and So". Just something to not cold pitch from the moment they walk in the door. 

The Topic Sentence is your meat. What is the entire purpose of this email? Are you having a sale? Are you addressing a solution to a pain point? Speak and they will come. Make sure you give them a Call to Action to get involved in what you want. 

Body Sentence. This something you can take or leave. It's nice to continue the narrative, but if enough is said in the Topic Sentence you can move on to Closing. 

Closing. You better Call to Action huge here. It's the last chance you get them before the archive this email for good. And if you did your job right they had to pass like 4 CTAs before they got to this last one. I like to make the CTA at the bottom a button because it stands out and makes them look at it. 

Why TL;DR? Because if your email is too wordy, they are going to mentally say "Too Long, Didn't Read." 

Email Imagery - Make them look twice

As the promised second part of the Email Breakdown series, I am going to talk about the images (and when to not have them). When creating marketing emails you can go two routes: personalized text based emails or generic, but glamorous imagery. They both can work, but you got to learn which to use when. 

Text-Based Emails

As someone who tends to fixate on beautiful images, my gut reaction to "text-based" is hesitation. I mean, with all the stunning images and graphics that can populate an email why on earth do you want to use just text? Because it's unexpected and because it's personal. 

When writing personal emails you get to use the variable tags your email list provides. If you gathered intel on your customer you can address them by their first name, mention their last products bought or discuss special going on in their state. My favorite about text based email is it looks written personally by you. We're so used to flashy gimmickry by stores that a text-based email almost comes across like a handwritten letter. 

Ex:

Shh [First Name], please don't tell!

I am hosting this exclusive live webinar on Social Media templates next week just for [State], which is perfect because I really want to meet you! 

Please click below to sign up for the webinar [link], and feel free to catch up with my latest post by visiting my blog [link]. 

And trust me, there's no sales pitch at the end. I just want to help out fellow small businesses! 

May your stars continue to align, 

Helena Williams

Laniebird Designs 

Imagery Email

So what makes an image heavy email work? I'll run down a list, because it's a few things you need to keep in your mental cheat sheet. 

1. Call to Actions 

Calltoactionexample

Whether it be buttons or the whole image, make sure you have a place for them to click. And what better than the bright, beautiful image you made? 

2. Header Image 

headerexample

It's like the cover to your book, a header image can bring them in and present to them the context of the rest of the email. People tend to not scroll when they first go through emails. That first 1/4 of the page better give them everything they need to know right away. Post your most blatant message there. 

3. Slow Your Sizing Roll

We are in a world of bigger is better when it comes to image quality. In emails it is not true. An email takes a while to load, and a huge image (even resized to a smaller size) will slow that process down. Also the bigger the file size of the email, the more likely it will be sent to spam. So save those pixels for your website. 

4. GIFS POP

gifexample.gif

Even though we just talked about sizing, GIFS are the exception. Creating a two-three image slide show of your specials is like a cheating way of getting a person's attention. But still keep in mind the size, as it will cause slow loading and eat phone data. 

 

I hope this helps when crafting your next email's images! Feel free to email me with any questions or to look over your next email campaign!