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Standing out in an inbox

by: isev

on: 8th June, 2011

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This makes it very easy for yours to get lost in the crowd – even if it is of interest it may be deleted without being noticed in the first place. The steps below have been designed to make your email stand out from the inbox clutter.

The importance of a subject line

Your subject line will create a first impression, and will often make the difference between an email being opened or deleted. Descriptive subject lines are more likely to engage your recipients. Provide them with a reason to read, give them an incentive – explain what’s in it for them, why should they read on?

Quality content is essential to a successful email campaign. Does it revolve around a particular theme? Is there an article that you want to highlight, or a new product that’s available? If your email newsletter’s subject line is ‘Newsletter’, now is the time to change it.

When writing your subject line, don’t forget to:

  •  Make it interesting! If your subject is boring, re-write it. Keep it short and sweet,
  •  Be descriptive. What will really interest your reader? 

  •  Avoid words/phrases that are commonly associated with spam

Introduce yourself

You want your customers to instantly recognise you, this is where the email ‘From’ line is very useful.

It’s important to keep your ‘from line’ consistent, so that your customers become familiar with you as a sender. Make sure you’re  using the company/brand name your readers are most familiar with – if this is a certain member of staff in some cases then use their name – the email will instantly become more trusted.

And remember – every from line needs a valid ‘reply-to’ email address. Marketing is a two-way communication between business and consumer. Always use a valid email address, so that your customers can contact you for further information.

Design for the Preview Pane

When emailing your customers you can never tell if they have read the entire message, or just what appears in the preview pane. A typical preview pane is 250 – 300px, so you must assume that your recipients only see this. This basically means that your preview pane must grab their attention – it needs to work hard for you. There is no time for long-winded sentences, so make sure your copy gets straight to the point and your headlines are snappy.

This section should include the most important and interesting information. More to read below? Provide links to entice the recipient to read on. Email width is also important. Your readers won’t want to scroll horizontally – so make sure that your template is no wider than 650 pixels.

Include important information as TEXT

Many people will disable images by default or they’ll take time to load and wont be seen – this means the images that you’ve painstakingly included in your campaign will count for nothing. This is one of the reasons why you should use text to convey important information in your email. Make sure your content is mainly text. If you must use images, make sure you include relevant ‘ALT’ tags to describe them.

Another highly important point to take note of is that any email with large images – or too many images – may never make it to the inbox. Spam filters will send this type of email directly to Junk!

Choose Quality over Quantity

Almost all readers of your email are going to scan through it at best, rarely will anyone spend the time to read the email in full. So if there’s too much text, readers will lose interest – keep sentences and paragraphs short and to the point.

Don’t include full articles – instead, provide a short summary of each article using an interesting headline and a teaser text. If your customers do want to read more, entice them back to your website for further information.

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