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Emails That Do Work: Spring Edition Part 2

Emails That Do Work: Spring Edition Part 2

Beyond • April 30, 2014

Hello again, world! It’s time for another segment of Emails That Do Work. I’m your host/blogger, Julie. Every month, I dive into our Benchmark Community to find and review client email templates with strong elements that successfully engage their readers and promote their message. As thrilling as it sounds, I’m pretty much staring at an opened browser with too many tabs to count. But onto my favorite part - writing about it! Let’s get started. Brandignity Right off the bat, I’m going to applaud Brandignity for having both a unique and functional business name. But are they backing up their brand as much as their name does? From the looks of their website at brandignity.com, I would have to say yes, yes, a million times yes! Based in Florida, Brandignity is a white hat search engine optimization (SEO) and marketing firm that aims to help clients develop their brand and market their businesses’ websites online. Why it works: Cleanliness: If I were to section off an email into categories like design, layout, and content, Brandignity wins in all three. Walking through a crowded store can be both a daunting and discouraging task. Barely making it to the checkout line without screaming bloody murder can really stain your experience at that retail establishment. Brandignity’s email is the complete opposite of that. It guides the reader’s eyes with a very symmetrical and mobile-friendly layout, stacking different articles and updates on top of one another. To simplify reader experience, the contrast between the black section blocks versus the white background call attention to the article topics, which are set in different colors. What really makes this email clean and consistent is the establishment of viewing pattern. The reader can glance at the top portion and already “predict” what is to follow. Familiar Environment: Business emails are an extension of your company’s brand. They’re like cyber versions of your sales reps, coming into your clients’ inboxes to check in on a client and leave a virtual business card behind. If you expect your employees to dress the part, then have your emails do the same. Brandignity’s emails are a great example of this. Take a look at their website and compare it with their emails. Not only do they use matching typefaces/fonts and color schemes, but they also set their company’s tagline (“No Science / No Secrets. Just Internet Marketing.”) at the top of their emails. Yes, the same tagline that populates Brandignity’s home page. This is a very clever way to establishing familiarity with the reader. The reader’s eyes will hit the tagline and think, “I remember that. I know where it’s from. I can keep reading because I opted in on these emails.” Hoteles Buenaventura Hoteles Buenaventura is a hotel, spa and beach club with properties in both Puerto Vallarta and Mexico. Their properties consist of the Villa Premiere, the Buenaventura Grand, and the Hacienda hotel and spa beach club. For today, we’ll focus on this particular email for the Villa Premiere, a luxury boutique retreat located in the heart of Puerto Vallarta. Why it works: Balance: There’s a great balance between photos and content. If we keep digging, there’s an even greater balance within the content, between sales pitches and actual details that inform the readers. What does this mean? It means that there is just as much imagery as there is text. It’s nothing new to state that readers are more receptive towards visuals, and Hoteles Buenaventura takes it one step further by moving their photos up towards the top fold to catch the reader’s eye. Let’s move on to my comment about a balance within the content between sales pitches and actual information. The content within the email is divvied up into two folds. The top fold carries all the sales pitch, and the bottom fold houses all the flight and pricing details to back up their marketing. This practice makes complete sense. It is straight-forward, and gives readers the discretion to keep reading if it’s something they are interested in. Details: Hoteles Buenaventura’s emails also list very specific pricing and flight details. This validates the sales pitch at the top portion of the email with more concrete information below, adding substance and legitimacy. The deals are more obtainable and readers don’t have to visit the business’s website to explore any further when it’s laid out in one neat little package...or email. Toby’s Sports Toby’s Sports is incorporated under the name Quorum International, along with its brand marketing and distribution arm, Sports Resources Inc. What began as a children’s toy store in 1978 and later shifted into skateboard sales, owner Roberto Claudio shifted the business’s focus onto sports retail when management observed the growing demand of sporting goods. The store was re-launched from Toby’s Forms and Shapes to what is now known as Toby’s Sports, both named after Claudio’s son. Why it works: No Beating Around the Bush: With emails being checked more and more often through mobile devices, we can safely assume that time is of the essence when reaching out to our subscribers. What I liked about this email is how much information a reader can get just from a simple glance. And that means one thing: Toby’s Sports made every word count in their promo email. Let’s take a look at the layout. About 60%-65% of the email is imagery. The headline, products, logo, and negative space take up the remaining area. Yes, they even left room for nothing but blank space. A great example of what I can call both an email marketing and life lesson - if you don’t have anything else to say, stop talking. Imagery With Purpose: More often than not, I see a lot of promo emails and updates with too many stock images that have no business being there. Before you go crazy on the downloads from your favorite stock image website, ask yourself a few questions. Does the image relate directly to my content? Or is it just something pretty that could fill in the empty space? The imagery in this email showcases not just any sportswear products, but the actual products being promoted. To make things even easier (as if they haven’t already), Toby’s Sports links each of those products with a number to match to the description names below.


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Emails That Do Work: Spring Edition Part 1

Emails That Do Work: Spring Edition Part 1

Beyond • April 28, 2014

Spring has sprung for many, except for the few areas over east with pockets of snow (boo). The flowers bloom, the birds and the bees mingle, and businesses everywhere send out spring-themed emails to their faithful readers. Now that I’m done setting up this imaginary tea party, let’s sit down and chat about Emails That Do Work. Main Street Wine Bar The Main Street Wine Bar is based in Stahlstown, Pennsylvania. Right in the heart of the Laurel Highlands, this cozy bar features wines from around the world. The small and intimate restaurant specializes mainly in its hefty selection of wines, either by the glass or bottle. Menu items feature delicious small plates, hand tossed pizza, and main dishes that can easily be paired with any wine offered. Why it works: Proper Dress Code: This email is well themed. From its imagery down to the colors used for the bottom fold, a mere glance is more than enough to convey what type of business the email is from. The rich reds and the scenic graphic paired with small glimpses of half-filled wine glasses is creates a very relaxing aesthetic. Nothing turns off readers more than misleading or confusing content. It’s safe to recommend that your emails should establish at least a somewhat relevant environment for your subscribers to recognize and open. Inviting Format: Good emails don’t necessarily need to be anything more than simple. Main Street Wine Bar stays on point with nothing more than informative content. This is an invitation with details - anything else, the reader can definitely do without. When structuring an email layout, think of what the purpose of your email will be. In this case, the Main Street Wine Bar is inviting all recipients to a wine tasting event. The next step would be to consider the information necessary for these recipients to attend. Remember to keep the objective in mind before executing anything else. Escade Media Entertainment Group Since 2009, The Escade Media Entertainment Group (Escade) has been working to offer professional services to all clients. This innovative DJ booking agency has more than 10 years of experience within the music industry, acting as an international agents for a roster of aspiring artists and DJs worldwide Why it works: Balance: There is a lot of attention to balancing the vibrant, dynamic imagery with structure. Without compromising movement and visual appeal, Escade has managed to contain the excitement of the imagery with organization in layout. Regardless of what industry you’re working in, putting some thought into simple tactics like this will demonstrate the quality of your business. In this case, Escade has skillfully balanced structure with creativity by presenting bold and intensive imagery in their emails while making it an easy read. Functional Folds: The folds of your email each serve a different purpose and therefore, hold different value. What do I mean by “folds”? The term “above the fold” refers to the upper half of the front page of the newspaper. Applying this to what we know today (ahem, the Internet), this term has now evolved into what we know now as content being “above the scroll”. Escade keeps this good practice in mind with their current email. Splaying out the main headline with louder imagery in the top fold was no accident. If emails have real estate value, anything “above the fold” or “above the scroll” is considered to be the highest priority. Important content is prominently displayed to ensure that the main message is visible to all users on a default as soon as the page loads. Small Business Expo Small Business Expo is the largest networking event, trade show and conference for small business owners. Hosted in seven of the Nation’s largest small business cities, Small Business Expo offers more than 5,000 registrants, 25 workshops, and 150 exhibitors in each market. Speaking of which, Benchmark is an active sponsor. Come visit us at a city near you if you can! Why it works: Brand Mentions: See the list of logos in the bottom of the email? Cross promotion is a great way for your business to form and develop relationships with other businesses. Competition is always key, but never forget potential allies that can do a great deal of work in brand awareness. Many SMBs are now working to form partner/affiliate programs and integrations with other businesses. Not all businesses can afford some of the larger sources of branding and promotion. Those who can usually hire ad agencies to execute media buys, outdoor and guerilla advertising, viral web campaigns, the whole nine yards. They lie in wait, hidden in the metaphorical business grass waiting to pounce during their multi-million dollar Superbowl ad time slot. For the rest of us, building a great foundation through lasting business relationships will simply have to do (because it works). Links: Emails that promote upcoming events, like this one, need to also offer the user ways to contact, share or sign up for the organization’s event. Small Business Expo provides social media sharing links to make it easy for their subscribers to share or sign up. Removing these options may not seem like a big deal, but the extra click or spare minutes your readers take to look for the information themselves can cost you more than you will know. A sign up, perhaps?


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Emails That Do Work: April Part 2

Emails That Do Work: April Part 2

Beyond • April 11, 2014

Hello, and welcome to another month of Emails That Do Work! At this point, I feel like I should have a gameshow slogan following the intro of this series. “Welcome to Emails That Do Work! Where emails...that do work...actually...” I’ll need some time to sit on this before improvising a cut-throat slogan. For those of you who are new to this series, I go into our Benchmark Community every month to pull emails from actual Benchmark users. I write highlights on useful practices and how this can be applied to your own email campaigns. Sam Mickail’s CUT Steak House At a quick glance, I found myself salivating over the imagery before I even bothered to look into the text. What is Sam Mickail’s CUT Steak House? Besides the obvious answer (steak house), it is a place where Sam Mickail can infuse a little international twist with the traditional method of preparing and cooking steak. Born in Cairo, raised in France, and trained in Switzerland, Mickail makes good use of his global experiences when it comes to his colorful cuisine.     Why it works: Delicious Presentation: When you’re in the food business, email like it! Food, unlike most products and services, require a different kind of TLC when it is being photographed. Lighting and freshness are key. And do your research - what color schemes are appetizing, and what kind of shots are you willing to present to your audience? In this particular email, Mickail presents himself in the top fold. This personalizes the restaurant, and creates ownership for the chef. After all, it IS Sam Mickail’s CUT Steak House, and not just CUT Steak House alone. Stomachs grumble as we move down to the bottom half of the email, where more-than-static images of their menu items burst out in a colorful frenzy. Remember, the menu is the main selling point! Give it the credit it deserves by creating movement with dynamic shots and colorful garnishments. Your readers will crave for more. Using REAL Imagery: Stock images are out. And if you still think they’re in, then you’re not investing enough in creating your own content. Remember that content is just as important in your marketing efforts to reach out to prospective customers as it is to get in touch with them. Increase your email readership and opens by changing up your content, both in copy and imagery. What I especially liked about this email is the FOOD, but wait...is this just a generic ad to promote the biz? Absolutely not. It’s a weekly special, and that implies a weekly update. These food pics are not a quick buy from a stock photo website. They are the main course--no, the meat of this email (pardon my bad puns). And because of this, the copy on this email is purely description, leaving the featured specials to do the promoting. SoundTree Media SoundTree Media is a music and entertainment company that mainly focuses on independent music marketing. They aspire to invest efforts on promoting independent artists and music to develop partnerships. Their goals lie in strengthening the “alternative entertainment and cultural ecosystem in the country,” through the means of artist management, composing editorials, festivals/events planning and organization, music marketing, and programming.     Why it works:   Layout is Unique, yet Organized: SoundTree’s email is a great example of applying creativity without sacrificing structure. Far different than the usual stacked layout (which is still clean and professional), the use of diagonal lines to segment the content creates a lot of dynamic flow and movement. Readers will find their eyes traveling in diagonal staggered “S” direction all the way down the page. This layout is something you don’t see every day, but that doesn’t make it any less effective. Color Schemes That Flow: It’s always easier said than done when it comes to choosing a good color scheme. SoundTree’s use of color works in several different ways. For one, the existing colors are complimentary. Instead of forcing different colors together to compete for the spotlight, the mellow colors all cancel each other out to make the content easier to read and focus on. Your email’s color scheme should be like backstage help - it allows your emails to function by guiding the reader’s eyes without having too much attention on itself. Royal LePage Realty in Parksville Royal LePage Realty in Parksville (Royal LePage) is a realty firm with its real estate sales territory in the British Colombia. Their team of realtors live and work in the Oceanside area and focus mainly on residential home sales and leasing.   Why it works: Simple and Professional: Blue is the main go-to color when it comes to marketing and branding your business professionally, mainly because blues are pegged for projecting trustworthy and reliable impressions. This doesn’t mean that every business should be branded and plastered in blue. If it’s not in your industry to do so, then don’t. Royal LePage keeps a very easy template going since their listings are the main featured content. These are simple to swap out on a regular basis, leaving the rest of the template to fill in the blank areas with secondary marketing offers. As seen in the lower fold of the email, Royal LePage wastes no time promoting subscriptions to get Vancouver Island market updates.   Detailed CTAs: Not only do they promote readership subscriptions, but they also offer a brief description on what the user will receive by clicking on their CTA (their call-to-action). If I hadn’t mentioned this before, a call-to-action is a banner, button, or a type of graphic with the sole purpose of prompting the user to click and continue down a funnel. As a business, you want your readers to take action on something. Whether it’s to opt in on marketing and promotional efforts or to purchase something right on the spot, you want your users to interact with your business in some way. This stirs up engagement and develops a relationship that leads you one step closer to your audience’s brand loyalty. In this case, Royal LePage explains in the lower left corner of their email what users will receive when they subscribe to market updates. This is a wise move. You don’t want to give your customers something completely irrelevant after they decide to click on your CTA button. Not only will they click out of it, but they might be left with a bad impression of your brand.


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Emails That Do Work: April Part 1

Emails That Do Work: April Part 1

Beyond • April 10, 2014

Here’s to another around of Emails That Do Work! Every month, I dive into the Benchmark Community to review and select a few emails that are putting good practices to great use. Keep these tips in mind when you’re preparing your next email campaign. Success starts when improvement shows! More Than Sound More Than Sound (MTS) creates and publishes high-quality tools to develop emotionally intelligent leadership and mindfulness. Their production expands from a line of podcasts, articles, blogs, publications, and video courses to offer tips and coaching on mastering the art of both subjects. Based on the nature of their business and their email campaigns (such as the one we’re reviewing today), we can safely say that MTS understands how to communicate effectively to their subscribers.     Why it works: Engaging Imagery: It’s very rare to see graphics that stray anywhere far from the usual stock photos. I was quite impressed by how MTS incorporated their promotional product into their imagery. Even at a glance, we can immediately segment the entire email into three portions - the purple intro and description, the yellow imagery, and an off-topic suggested read of “Understanding the Science of Moods at Work”. The friendly interaction between the people in the graphics and the product immediately communicates two messages: (1) that this book is for everyone, and (2) that someone at MTS took the time to create a visual to engage readers. Rather than to slap a few stock images that could maybe fit into the context of the email message, MTS took ownership in branding their imagery. Complementing Colors: Yes, complementing with an E, not an I...although these colors also do compliment each other as well. When selecting colors to use in creating your email template, take the time to make sure they look good next to each other. In this case, MTS opted for lighter colors that are easy on the eyes. As noted before, the colors also help segment the email into separate portions. Notice how the colors populate about 90% of the email without overwhelming the eyes. The opaqueness fills the page but doesn’t remove the spotlight from the content. You’re probably wondering what influenced the choice of colors within the email. Purple and yellow? Seems a strange pair to use, right? Take a look again. This email is a promotion for a newly released book. What colors are used on the book cover? Yes, there you have it. And that’s where we begin to make the connection of the subtle circular patterns behind the content. The colors and graphics are inspired by the featured product. Pretty neat, huh? SARAR The SARAR Group is a menswear business with over 60 years of experience in the industry. Based in Eskisehir in Turkey, the headquarters now comprise of three modern menswear factories located right next to each other. About 40% of the factory’s output is exported to the U.S., Germany, Holland, Italy, Iceland and the United Arab Emirates.     Why it works: To The Point: This email conveys SARAR’s message in the blink of an eye. That’s a good thing, because many people tend to ramble in emails. This practice works well to engage your readers, and it’s worth the extra time that it might take to cut content out. What may seem less of a read could also mean a boost in readership. Squeezing anything and everything you’d want to say to a reader onto an email is wasted effort. Your subscribers will get lost trying to decipher what the main point of your message is, and will most likely forget about it altogether. That is, if they even get to reading the entire thing. One good habit to make your own, as SARAR has successfully done, is to cut down content. When in doubt, leave it out! Call Out Actions: If we take the email and read the red text, what do we get? “ONE WEEK ONLY (02/17 MON - 02/23 SUN)”, “(Except shoes and accessories)”, and “FREE”. Without even glancing at the rest of the content, we already know that there is a limited time event that excludes a few line of products, and that they are offering a deal in which the buyer gets something free. The red is eye-catching and encourages readers to take action, even if they don’t necessarily know what they need to take action on. If they’re interested, they’ll take the time fill in the blanks by reading the white text. Red is a very powerful color, especially when placed next to whites and blacks. It signals most readers to stop, or pause. SARAR puts into practice what most effective emails do - grab your reader’s attention first, and say what you have to say immediately after. QNAP QNAP, Inc. is branded as the “Quality Network Appliance Provider” and aims to deliver comprehensive offerings of network attached storage and network video recorder solutions. The business integrates technologies and designs to effectively improve business efficiency on file sharing, virtualization applications, storage management and surveillance for other businesses.   Why it works: Content Structure and Layout: As someone who designs the landing pages for our acquisitions team here at Benchmark, I see QNAP’s email design ringing pretty close to home. Try to answer the 5 Ws when you’re developing your email campaign - Who, What, Where, When and Why. Of course, depending on your points, you may be able to eliminate a few Ws out of irrelevancy. In QNAP’s case, the When is left out because there isn’t a date or time of any significance to provide for the readers. The Who is answered by their logo in the top right. The What gets a bit more obvious (hint: it’s the large storage unit pictured in the dead center of the email). The Where is offered as link to redirect interested buyers to view locations that carry the featured product. The Why, though, should always be prevalent. Why do you want your readers to take action? Why do they want the What that you’re offering? This question can be disguised as product features, as QNAP has effectively done with bullet points below the storage unit (you know, that aforementioned storage unit with three small men interacting with it). Social Media Sharing (and Other Options): So you’ve sold your readers on why they should pursue your offer. What now? Put yourself in the customer’s chair. Is the product simple enough to decide on right then and there? Or does your product or service have more information to offer? If so, DON’T include it all on your email. An interested reader will pursue more details, so make it easier for them to find it. In the orange footer section at the bottom of QNAP’s email, there are options to view more information on the product, retailer locations, and an option to contact QNAP for anything else. Social media sharing buttons never hurt an email. If anything, they offer consumers to create a bridge of communication that will extend the lifespan of their relationship with the business. It also shows that QNAP has great web presence, making them more accessible and trustworthy than a business that fails to provide those channels.


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Emails That Do Work: Catch Up Part 2

Emails That Do Work: Catch Up Part 2

Beyond • January 24, 2014

It’s another segment of (cue the cheery, thematic music) Emails That Do Work. I’m your host, Juuuuuulie. Game show intro aside, our community is chock full of great, holiday-themed emails for us to take a look at. Here are a few that I have pulled to help you with both inspiration and tips to optimize your future emails and campaigns. Total Nutrition Total Nutrition (TN), or better known as TNVitamins, has been providing consumers with nutritional supplements at affordable prices for more than 30 years. They are one of the first companies to manufacture and distribute supplements directly to their customers. Over the years, the company has taken the initiative to formulate their own nutritional supplements, producing them and marketing them at affordable prices. Why it works: Clarity of Message: Most emails come with an update or a point, and TN has definitely won this award in clarity. The bold, vibrant color of the first half of the page dominates and clears the way to announce their last Cyber Monday sale. Once a user opens an email, there’s a limited amount of time for the sender to relay their message. Emails that are too heavy in text could overwhelm the recipient, and discourage them from reading further on. TN did what most advertisers would do: make every word count. This is something to keep in mind for your future campaigns. Is your message too wordy? Can it be shortened and still communicate the same idea? Have a point to your emails, and make that point short, sweet, and CLEAR. Simplified Product Descriptions: TN has mastered the breakdown of communication to their loyal subscribers. In selling products that don’t necessarily have the easiest names for their customers to read through, they’ve bridged the gap by describing the product’s targeted results. I wouldn’t have known that zinc lozenges remedies the cold and flu. But by grouping together their products and categorizing them under what they are generally good for, TN makes their emails a lot easier and quicker to skim through. To give TN yet another pat on the back, the categorizes target common problems like colds, weight loss, and sports nutrition. Elwin & Company Elwin & Company (E&C) is a local Berkley Bakery that features prepared foods to go. Originally opening as a small European-style cafe serving breakfast and lunch, E&C has grown into a scone factory, now producing anywhere from 600 to 1,2000 dozen scones on an average day. Why it works: Consistent Theme: Although many businesses often jump on the holiday bandwagon when it comes to seasonal color schemes, E&C gets a high-five for maintaining both a Christmas-y feel without sacrificing their branded look. The flyer uses colors that are easy on the eyes. The light, almost minty color used in the background hits close to home - their home site, that is. The seasonal, thematic colors of red and green also follow suit in its opaqueness. Case and point: mold seasonal looks and colors to appropriately match your brand. In E&C’s case, use of “lighter” reds and greens creates a holiday feel without taking their subscribers too far from their image. If your brand harbors darker, more striking colors, then feel free to darken your holiday’s reds and greens. Segmentation: With this email being an announcement for an individual event, providing information is unavoidable. When there is a bit of text to educate the readers with details, segmenting is the just-as-cool cousin of layout. E&C gave their readers a clear passageway of legibility by the way the message is organized. “Berkley Hometown Holidays 2013” holds the spotlight, but the date “Saturday, December 7” immediately follows below, guiding the reader’s eyes to even smaller text that will support the spotlighted headline. This gives E&C’s readers the option to determine whether or not this is something they are interested first, rather than bombarding them with the extra details first. Vivid Jewelers Vivid Jewelers has been family-owned and operated since 1978, located in upscale Cleveland, Ohio. In time, the business has evolved to incorporate high-end technology into the traditional art of jewelry design. Services include, but are not limited to appraisals, engraving, gold and platinum repair, watches, rings, settings, remounting and redesigning jewelry. Why it works: Text-to-Photo Ratio: There’s a perfect balance between imagery and text, which results in an easy read. The picture of the store’s interior garnished with holiday decorations shows a sense of local presence. A physical storefront, or signs of one, often comfort potential customers with the notion that they can always address any inquiries or concerns the good ol’ fashioned way: face-to-face. But I digress! The point is, balance your content with some imagery. There’s no point in having something for your subscribers to read if they decide to pass right through it. Visuals are good attention-grabbers, and sliding in your text proportionately will help with this. Stacking: This method is probably the most mobile-friendly. If you did your research, you’ll know that most recipients are accessing their email via mobile devices. If you haven’t done your research, then you’ve learned something new today! Vivid Jewelers utilizes a stacked layout, confining the width of their email template and playing upon the fact that most users will be scrolling vertically for more information. So what do they do? Put the most important piece of information at the very top, of course. “December 14, 20% off storewide savings” reels the readers in before they even know what is 20% off.


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Emails That Do Work: Catch Up Part 1

Emails That Do Work: Catch Up Part 1

Beyond • January 23, 2014

It’s that time again to take a gander through our Benchmark Community emails and rip them apart for all they’re worth. I’m kidding. It’s my first entry to help out for our Emails That Do Work series, and I’ve already gone and tarnished my reputation (as if I had one). Needless to say, I’ve scoured through over a hundred pages to pull some of our favorite user emails that, well, do work. We hope you find some of these tips useful so that you can optimize your own campaigns, too. World Organic World Organic (WO) sells certified, high quality organic products online. It’s based in New Zealand and about four years deep into development. The entire business is a visionary collection of the the founder’s life experiences and education. What pulls my attention to this particular piece is the main imagery that populates the top portion of the newsletter. Engagement secured! Well done, WO. The hard part’s over with. Why it works: Branding: WO established a familiar presence by pulling colors directly from their main website. But wait - not just the colors. The typography. The layout. Even the basic “look and feel” of their site makes an appearance on this email. Everything has virtually influenced the design of their newsletter. Even at a glance, subscribers will immediately recognize the sender. And that’s called good branding. Relevancy: Readers find more validity in pieces that don’t look like they’ve been slapped together minutes before the campaign’s due to send. WO definitely took the time to design so that both imagery and content match well together. Take a look at the aforementioned image at the top of the email. Then, further down, there’s an iconic silhouette of raised hands in the “New Team Members” section. And so on and so forth, scrolling even further down. The media isn’t being inserted to fill in space. Every icon or image is intentional, and serves a purpose of being there. Sportsbook Reviews Sportsbook Reviews (SBR) is a sports betting and handicapping forum where users can discuss picks, odds, and predictions for upcoming games and results on latest bets. Needless to say, the big S word sets the tone for what a subscriber would expect from SBR’s emails (pst, the S word being SPORTS). Why it works: Sections, the other S word: Yes, this betting guide is lengthy and jam-packed with a lot of information. In the very case that the message is on the heavier side, go with the next best thing - sectioning. SBR pulls this tip off perfectly with its organizational skills. You can be a hoarder and no one would know it if you’ve got sweet Tetris skills. The same rules apply here as well. For businesses that have more content to deliver per email, the arrangement of both media and copy can make for an easier read. You’ve already gotten your subscribers’ attention if they’ve opened your email. SBR takes the extra effort to sort through what’s important and what’s less important so that their readers don’t have to. Text-to-picture ratio: Let’s all remember that 90% of information that comes to the brain is visual, and we are able to digest facts a lot faster when we are exposed to images rather than words. With that in mind, SBR made the smart move of incorporating imagery that relates to the text and appeals to their reader demographic at the same time. To put it bluntly, for every section of copy, SBR sneaks in either a victorious sports shot or visually-enticing hot girl in sportswear. Kudos to the decision makers at SBR. Knowing your target audience is one thing, but using it to your advantage is another. Gridz Direct Gridz Direct is an online shopping website that sells electronic devices like mobiles, tablets, laptops, cameras, softwares, and a partridge in a pear tree. Okay, maybe not that last one. The business is a renowned IT and Telecom solutions company, specializing in Customized Development, Web Portals, IT Integration, and Logistical Fulfillment Solutions. Jargon aside, let’s get technical with this promo email. Why it works: Structure: Some emails have the content, but fail to effectively communicate them because it doesn’t stand out or guide the eyes. Things that lack order or reason on media and copy placement tend to lose the reader at a moment’s glance. Gridz Direct creates a structure that is easy to read through, and allows the subscriber to predict the “pattern” as they continue downward. Sure, each box frames a different product with different colors. But the placement of imagery and text are uniform with one another. All discounts are on the right, and all call-to-action buttons are right below it. A shot of the product sits on the left. Lather, rinse and repeat. Visually loud: The colors are vivid and striking. Sure, each section different from one another, but it’s the consistency in structure that helps this shouting promo achieve its goals. The bright colors grabs the reader’s attention. The copy is short and sweet. The most appealing part is the discounted amount, which Gridz Direct enlarges to keep the subscriber interested. Whether you wanted the products advertised or not, you at least took the time to look.


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