When you’re creating an email that’s going to be read on almost any kind of device, from PC to smartphone to iPad, keep in mind that great design is only half of the equation. You could have the most beautiful email on the planet, but if your content isn’t relevant or enjoyable to your readers, it’s ultimately going to fall flat.
Many people use their mobile devices to scan and filter their emails, so in many cases you’ve got just one shot at getting them to open your message. If they don’t like the looks of it, though, or if the content is not all that interesting, they’ll delete it without thinking twice.
A well designed email will definitely give you an advantage, but content is the part you really need to get right if you want results. How do you do it? Here are three suggestions to get you started.
- Really get to know your audience. Send them surveys. Ask them what they want or how you can better serve their needs. Follow your email subscribers on Twitter. Like or friend them on Facebook. Invite them to join your LinkedIn group(s). Listen to what they’re saying, and join in the conversation. This won’t just help you build relationships with your customers and prospects; it will help you generate ideas for marketing and email campaigns. It can also shine a light on where there are needs in the marketplace that you could fill with a new product or service.
- Dedicate time on a regular basis to generate ideas and come up with interesting and relevant content, and then craft your messages to make them simple, straightforward and engaging. And don’t forget to build in a compelling call-to-action!
- Create an editorial calendar and plan your campaigns well in advance, so you’re not scrambling to come up with ideas at the last minute. The editorial calendar helps you organize your ideas, and keep track of all the different facets of your campaign so you can coordinate your efforts between product releases, emails, blog posts, social media activity, etc.
The more thought you put into what you’re writing, and the more planning you do, the more cohesive and powerful your emails will be. Which translates into improved ROI and–potentially–increased revenue.
Do you use an editorial calendar when planning your email campaigns? How’s it working for you? Let us know in the comments!