Improve your Email Marketing Campaign with these Five Layout Tips

By Steve O'Bryan

The subject line is designed to get your contacts to read your emails, but too many email marketers stop there and do not spend enough time on creating successful layouts. Most email advertisements are too cluttered and messy or too plain and boring to be effective. These five tips will help you improve the layout of your email messages and increase click-throughs and conversions.

Graphics can catch the eye of your readers, but too many graphics will distract from the message. If the reader is distracted or confused then they are much less likely to feel inclined to follow through or even know how to. You have a split second to make a good first impression and according to studies, about seven seconds to deliver your message. Too many graphics will eat up the little amount of time you have to connect with your reader. Keep it simple - this is the key to creating good graphics.

Images are usually disabled when messages are first opened. If you have too many images in your emails then loading them will take up most of the precious time you have to catch your reader's attention. Be sure to only use graphics that will add to the effectiveness of the message. Place as few graphics as possible in your messages and never more than four.

Put five to seven links in your messages. More links will make it easier for your readers to respond, and a higher response will signal to the email clients that you are not a spammer. If you have a consistent pattern of click-throughs then you are much less likely to get filtered and these two factor will work together to greatly benefit your email marketing campaign.

Use copy sparingly. Too much copy will be the death nail of any email. Most people's attention span is not long enough to read through a lot copy and figure out the email's purpose. Write something brief and captivating that will create interest for the reader. Then have them click-through to a landing page where you can say everything you need to.

Any good marketing professional will tell you that the road to success is paved with tests. The frequency and effectiveness of your tests will largely determine how much success you have in email marketing. Continually split test your layouts, as well as the other elements of your email campaign. As you try to improve upon your most successful campaigns your data will point you in the direction of high returns.

The second type of testing that is essential to any email marketing campaign is a simple trial send. Get an account with the major web email clients and send every message to yourself before you send it to your contacts. When you open up your email in each of the different clients you can look to see if it went through and what it looks like. This gives you a chance to be sure that things are in order so a mistake doesn't lead to a mass opting out that afternoon! Always be testing.

Email advertising campaigns are an art as much as a science and taking the time to work on your layout and find what works will pay huge dividends. If people open your email and then do not respond because of a poor layout design then you have missed a golden opportunity. The effort to improve layout is well worth the investment.

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