Why do you send marketing emails? To inform your contacts of news, to promote products and services, to solve their problems or to nurture them into sales leads? It could be just one of these, or all four.
Whatever the reasoning behind your email newsletters, the objective of any email you send should be thoroughly thought through well before you hit the send button. When you’re crafting your emails, are you putting them together haphazardly and hoping everything falls into place, or are you laying each building block with due care and precision?
Let’s break down the anatomy of a great email newsletter, so you can start building yours from scratch with confidence.
One of the very first questions to ask yourself, alongside ‘Why am I sending this email?’, is ‘Who am I sending it to?’. Who needs to read it?
If need be, segment your contact list by demographic information like their location or industry or transactional information such as their previous interactions with your website. This way, you can send targeted, relevant emails.
Inject some relatability into this field, to avoid alienating your recipients and causing them to ignore, report as spam or delete your email.
Tip: For the From name, use a person’s name or your brand name. For the From email address, use firstname.lastname@example.org instead of marketing@ or info@.
Aim for your email to do exactly what it says on the tin. So get straight to the point, and tell recipients what to expect if they open the email.
Is there an offer they can’t refuse, or an exciting revelation? Tell them about it, while keeping it brief and avoiding spam trigger words.
The snippet. A seemingly useless extension of the subject line and something so many email marketers have little idea what to do with.
But guess what? It affects open rates too. Expand on your sales message in the snippet, or display the beginning of your message here like ‘Dear (name), Have you heard about…’, instead of redundant text like ‘If you can’t see this message, please use this link’.
Your email layout will make the difference between a mediocre email and an outstanding one. Are you using a header? What about a navigation bar with links to pages of your website?
When it comes to the body elements of your email, how are you arranging your content? Think about the placement of headings, text, images and CTAs.
What type of content is your email delivering? This will impact your layout. If your objective is to promote a special offer, give the details of this with images and info. If it’s to provide news, you’ll need headlines and short bulletins.
This is where it gets juicy. Consider the tangible benefit of your email to your recipients and make this shine through in your headings, longer text and your CTAs.
Keep your word count down for a bigger impact, as concise, clean copy goes a long way. Sales copy should be persuasive and urgent; play around with different linguistic approaches and monitor your results.
The use of relevant images and videos in your emails makes sense for most brands, but there’s no need to overdo it. Match images to your content to drive your message home, making sure to keep your audience in mind when it comes to selecting the right style. What resonates with them?
It’s up to you whether you include one CTA or several and, largely depends on whether your email is focussed on one action or several. Again, refer back to the primary aim of your email. If you only want to elicit one response, choose one large CTA. If you want to give your recipients more options, include a few CTAs. Just keep the flow of your email logical and easy on the eye.
A necessary addition to the end of your email layout, which should flow with your email to prevent it looking unsightly. Include your contact details, social media links, an unsubscribe link and a disclaimer here.
Social media integration
Just because it’s an email to your contacts, doesn’t mean they have to be the only ones to see it. Include social sharing buttons so that your recipients have the option to share the contents of your newsletter.
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