Before designing your email you
will hopefully have consulted internally on the campaign objectives and ensured
your creative ideas are aligned with the brand direction. Now it is time to
turn to the type of email you are
going to send, and then decide on an appropriate template for delivering the message. We will cover this over two
Your email type will be largely
influenced by the commercial focus. This could be, for example, creating
awareness, becoming part of the consideration set, converting prospects over to
your product/service, promoting greater use of your product/service or building
a long-lasting relationship.
Either way the format is usually
either editorial or promotional in design and tone. These can be short or long,
depending on the complexity of the message, and how quickly you wish people to
follow a particular call to action.
A short editorial is typically used
to deliver alerts, updates, press releases, "tips of the day" or information
around product launches. These emails tend to be short and to the point with
the purpose of informing your subscribers. The balance should lean more towards
editorial content rather than promotion, though there will be some promotional
content contained in the email.
A long editorial gives greater
content and information on the product, service or event. These are typically
newsletters, longer press releases, whitepapers or industry guides. They allow
you to write more, and the goal is to inform customers and prospects. It is not
a sales pitch; however there is also an element of promotion and further information
on the buying process.
Unlike the editorial, a
promotional email has a more specific call to action. It is designed to move
the reader away from the email and on to a sales process as quickly as
possible. They are also short and direct, and would typically have one key
message to promote - e.g. buy this, sign-up for that etc. There must be a clear
benefit to the recipient. Examples would include e-cards, sale announcements
and certain types of groupon offers.
The long promotional format
allows you to present the benefits of your product in more detail, or multiple
product and service offerings in one email. It is ideal for more complex messaging
or "bundled" offers that require greater explanation. It is a direct sales
approach that should be reflected in the content. Typical examples include
sales letters, catalogue emails etc. (e.g. from large retailers like Argos).
In the next blog we will look at
some template formats.
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