Designing Your Emails for Maximum Appeal
By Michael Cohn
Because of the sheer volume of Emails that your recipients receive from you on a daily basis, your Emails need to be designed to stand out and really grab the attention of the other person. Of course, the content of your Emails is extremely important to your brand; however, the design of those Emails is just as important because if the design doesn't appeal to the other person, he or she will not read what you want to share.
Getting other people to want to read your Emails
When it comes to getting the other person to want to read the Emails that you are sending to him or her, it isn't always as simple as it may seem. However, there are some things that you can do that will compel the other person to not only open your Emails but also to read them from beginning to end.
Customize the layout for the device: With the number of people who read content (including Emails) on mobile devices of various types, it is very important that you ensure that your Emails are user and device friendly. In other words, how your Emails appear on a desktop or laptop is not how they will appear on a cell phone or tablet.
The layout of your Email should be sophisticated enough to be accommodating according to the size of the device's screen. Many people only read Emails on a mobile device. If you don't optimize your Emails for that device, you will be missing many opportunities because those peole will not read what you are sending.
Make sure to include an Email teaser: Just like you have a teaser paragraph in a blog (which gives the reader enough of an inkling of what the rest of the article will impart), you should include a teaser in your Emails. It will help your recipient to quickly decide whether your Email is interesting, valuable, and compelling enough to continue reading. Hopefully, he or she will decide to read your Email in its entirety every time. It will take you a minimal amount of effort to write it and you will get a great deal of mileage out of it.
Use an obviously placed call-to-action (CTA): The CTA is critical to your brand's success because it is really the only way that your Email recipient has to be able to interact with you. Because the CTA is so important, you need to make sure that you position it in a place in your Email that is very apparent to your recipient. That means that CTAs should appear in the first half of the Email.
It is also important to remember that your CTAs should not all be identical. You will want to mix them up as much as possible. Your CTA should give clear instruction on what you want your Email recipient to do. You may be surprised to learn that he or she will be willing to do what you want in most cases.
Make sure that your branding is prominent and visible: Just as you only have three seconds to capture the attention of your reader when you share a blog (or any other content), you have the same three seconds to capture the attention of your Email recipient. Of course, that is certainly not a great deal of time. It is probably the most effective if you place your brand's logo and the small amount of content that is a part of that logo as high up on the page as possible.
Make font size readable: Using a font that is too small to read easily is really not a good idea. In fact, it is probably quite annoying to your recipients. Just think about how you would feel if someone sent you something that was practically unreadable. It is a really good way to get the recipient to never read your Emails again. It is important for your to keep in mind that if it is small on a desktop computer, it will be even smaller on a mobile device.
Be careful how you use graphic images: Images are an important part of content in most cases. However, when it comes to Emails and mobile devices, you need to be sure that they don't take up too much space and that they can be opened. Otherwise, they will just be a frustrating annoyance. When it comes to Emails, it is a really good idea to provide alternate-text descriptions for your image(s) just in case your image(s) cannot be opened. At least the recipient will understand what you were trying to share as far as the visual was concerned.
Make it personal: You should design your Emails with the other person in mind. You want your recipient to feel as though you are speaking only to him or her and that the relationship that you share is very important to you. There are also some other elements that will lend themselves to customization, such as the recipient's name, sex, and products and/or services that the other person may have bought or was considering buying.
Your Email design is very important and you want it to affect the other person in a positive way. An effective Email design means that you will help the reader to focus on what you feel is important. The writing itself is extremely important as well but there are a lot elements and a lot of thought that will go into designing an effective Email campaign. If you do it right, the other person will not only open and read your Email but that person will also be happy to do whatever you are asking and to share your information with other people as well.
About The Author
Michael Cohn is the founder and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of CompuKol Communications. He has over 25 years of experience in IT and web technologies. Mr. Cohn spent a significant amount of time at a major telecommunications company, where his main focus was on initiating and leading synergy efforts across all business units by dramatically improving efficiency, online collaboration, and the company's Intranet capabilities, which accelerated gains in business productivity. He also reduced company travel and travel costs by introducing and implementing various collaboration technologies.
His expertise includes business analysis; project management; management of global cross-matrix teams; systems engineering and analysis, architecture, prototyping and integration; technology evaluation and assessment; systems development; performance evaluation; and management of off-shore development.
Mr. Cohn earned a Master's degree in project management from George Washington University in Washington, DC; and a Master's degree in computer science and a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, NJ.
Mr. Cohn is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).
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