Keep these tips in mind to grab the attention of your readers then keep them engaged with your content.
1. Use images.
There’s nothing less inviting in your inbox than opening an email only to see text, text and more text. Pictures make your content feel more readable and personalized. Thanking your audience for their support? Show a picture of your appreciative staff to put a face on your gratitude. Advertising an upcoming event? Add some pics from the last event so potential attendees know what to anticipate.
Of course, if your readers’ email programs have images turned off, they may not see your photos at first, so make sure your campaign is still visually appealing by formatting the text in creative ways.
2. Break up your content.
Visually let your readers know that even with their busy schedules, your email is quick and easy to read.
- Consolidate content into lists. Great for skimming!
- Highlight different sections using the table tool to insert background colors.
- Make use of layouts that space your content in unexpected ways. Think outside of the basic letter structure.
- Experiment with the horizontal rule tool to put a thin border between articles.
3. Keep it consistent.
While it would be great if all our recipients read all the content in our campaigns, the truth is that they probably don’t. Not because it’s not chalk full of fabulous content, but because they likely have overflowing inboxes. To help your readers find what’s valuable to them, keep your newsletters consistent – use only a couple fonts (in reasonable sizes) and stick to a uniform, easy-to-read color scheme.
If you build a campaign that is somewhat predictable in terms of timing, content and placement, with a little restraint shown in your font and color choices, your readers will know when and where to find their favorite pieces.
4. Mix it up.
Once you’ve figured out a general framework for your campaigns so that readers know what to expect, find a way to still keep it fresh. Disrupt the norm occasionally with a new banner graphic that calls attention to a big event or sale you’re advertising. Keep readers guessing a little, so they never feel like they’ve read it all before. If you have a column on beauty tips every week, but this week you have nothing to share on the topic, don’t fill the space just to stay consistent. Put something new in its place or try a simplified mailing with less content this time.
5. Keep an eye on length.
Creating long email campaigns is an easy mistake to make. And it’s understandable — after all, you’re an amazing organization doing great things, and you want to share it all. But when your email is too long, readers are less likely to read your content.
Don’t give it away all at once. You want to direct readers to your website, right? Well then, leave a little to the imagination and make them want more. Give only a headline or a brief teaser to an article so they can easily scan for topics that pique their curiosity. Then direct your readers to the full story with a “see more” or “continue reading” link, which will take them straight to your web site. Right where you want ‘em.