Email marketing is one of those topics that has been discussed at least a gazillion times but it is surprising to see people fail at the basics of email marketing in at least 70% of the emails I receive on a daily basis, if not more. When I try to think about the reason on why this happens, then I realize that it is probably due to the lack of clear set of expectations from email marketing, lack of understanding of target audience, and lack of understanding of why people actually click on an email or buy after clicking on one.
It is important to mention here that we are only talking about promotional e-mailers sent by an e-commerce company. There are tons of other e-mailers, but they are not being discussed right now.
I am just going to review an awesome email that I saw a few weeks back. I could have actually written an article with 10 points (or 7 points) that you need to follow to get an email which is not just opened but also clicked and viewers not only visit the site, but also like the product and eventually buy it, but then I thought that the best way to teach is by the way of an example and by this example, I would like to teach a few basics and advanced techniques.
Focus on the techniques and you will automatically know what to do the next time you are working on an email campaign.
The entire email is broken into 3 parts for ease of review. So let’s quickly look at the positives and why this email campaign is really good.
Take a second look at all the images that have been used in the emailer. Each and every image is not just of good quality, but has been chosen to fit with other images and more importantly, the overall theme. Needless to say that the images are of the products that need to be sold the most by the business teams.
Number of products per section
The mailer doesn’t focus on one product or just one type of product per category as it understands that the viewer of the image is not one single profile who is seeking to buy one single product or brand. The viewer is a generic profile and thus the mailer intends to display the top categories that are under the sale and also the top product types in each of those categories.
Discounts per category
It is very evident that the theme of the mailer is Sale, or to be more specific, “Clearance Sale”. This expectation has been set right at the start and thus has to be lived up to in each and every section of the mailer. Thus, the discount percentages are made obvious in the mailer and they are displayed just above the Call to Action as that is the most important piece of information that will make a user click on the mail / section of the mail. In that regards, the mail designer is extremely clear about the theme (what is he selling), which is discount percentages across categories.
Header and Footer
The Header and Footer of the mail are designed in a way so as to give the exact look and feel of the website. In fact the Header and Footer are an exact replica of the Header and Footer of the website so that the user flow and experience doesn’t get interrupted when the viewer goes from the mail to the website. Extremely important point to maintain high Conversion rates via mailers.
The social actions on the mailer are more required from a hygiene factor and from a “hope” that someone would click on it and share the emailer. There is no incentive / motive for anyone to do that, and they can just forward the mail if they want, which is much easier. Hence, this section can be done much better so that more people want to share the mail on their social networks.
Phone number, email ID, postal address are all available and available in clear and visible font which add a lot of credibility of the website and thus is an extremely important part of any mailer. What I particularly like about this mail is that all the 3 details are available and attempt has been made to make them visible, rather than to just let them be hidden in one small area of the mail.
This is one of the most important parts of a mail (after the subject line) and has been done very well. The color combinations, the definition of the theme of the mail, the curiosity to go down the mail and read more and the positive emotion, all of it is present and displayed well.
Sense of Urgency
Let’s face it, No one likes to buy from mailers. People want to buy when they want to buy and not when they see a mail. Hence it is very important to create a limitation in every mailer. The limitation can be Limited stocks or Limited time. This emailer created a sense of urgency by creating a limitation on the time and hence will ensure that if there is a product that interests the user, then he will definitely click on it “now” rather than just forget about it.
The mailer follows a color scheme that is different and in a sense, pretty unique. It is very important as every mailer or every marketing communications message has to stand out. We see thousands of marketing communications every day and the ones that are different and innovative are the ones that can command us to stop, get our attention span, and make us read. If this doesn’t happen, then we can forget about every thing else (sales).
The mailer is not at all cluttered. There is a lot of information in the mailer and still it is presented in a very clean manner. This happens as each and every area is defined properly in terms of the elements that need to be present in it. for example the section for products, the section for discounts, the section for call to action and so on. This is where creating a template really helps and adds a lot of emphasis on uniformity.
Other factors – like targeting, email subject, overall size of the email (KBs) etc are also important and have to be considered to deliver a seamless experience.
In short, think from a reader’s perspective. He is busy with a few things right now, and doesn’t have anything in his mind that is even close to what’s in this mail. Your job is to make him open the mail, like a part or multiple parts of that mail so that he clicks and then goes ahead and buys. To deliver this entire experience, you need to have a mailer that is well planned and executed.
Not rocket science, just be aware of what you are doing, and why !