Top Tips for Creating Email Campaigns That Convert


Kellie Boggs, Senior Marketing Strategist

Author Bio

With over nine years of experience in developing and growing email and cross-channel marketing programs to drive revenue, Kellie Boggs brings a track record of success in building multi-channel campaigns across a variety of industries. By working one-on-one with clients to understand their business model and goals, she provides strategic marketing guidance to increase revenue. Boggs offers experience in providing clients with industry best practices, message design, campaign optimization, list growth tactics, segmentation strategies and detailed analyses of marketing campaigns. She truly enjoys helping clients build their customer base, grow their email channel and increase revenue! In her spare time, Boggs enjoys chasing her toddler around and the motherhood adventure. She also enjoys attending NC State sporting events with her family.

Every now and then, it’s good to take a step back and give yourself a little refresher on the do’s and don’ts of email marketing. With so much changing in the world of ecommerce – from technology to consumer behavior – you can’t simply rest on your laurels and cruise along with your old stand-by strategies.

Let’s take a look at a few ideas for getting ahead of the game and creating marketing campaigns that convert.

Video in Email Is Back

Email on Acid dataYou heard me right! With the launch of iOS 10, Apple brought back support for video, which now allows you to embed video directly into your email. It’s a great way to enhance your customer experience and increase engagement.

Now I am sure you’re wondering if video in email is supported by most email clients. The answer: Support for HTML 5 is still limited, but the clients that do support it represent half of the market share.

This data from Email on Acid shows that iOS client, Apple Mail and Samsung can play video, while other email clients, including Gmail and the Android devices, display a fallback image.

If you choose to embed video in your email, you must also have an alternative in case the email client doesn’t support video. This alternative is referred to as a backup or “fallback” image. When video is not supported, your message will display an image you’ve taken from your video with a play button on top of it. When a user clicks the image, they’re directed to the location of the hosted video. It’s not the ideal user experience, but it still allows the reader to view your video.

But I’m sure you’re wondering whether video is really right for you. My answer: It depends on your audience. Being able to play video right in your message can definitely add that “wow” factor, and just think how much more likely your subscribers will be to watch your video when they don’t have to navigate to another site to view it.

This is still a fairly new strategy, so many of you may not have tried it yet. But if it interests you, go for it! Get ahead of the game, and test it out. You might consider embedding video for holiday greetings, product updates, demos, new product releases, training courses or customer testimonials.

Make Your Content Eye-Catching

There are many ways to create compelling content that your subscribers will respond to. As we already mentioned, you could prompt your subscribers to watch a video.  Here’s a great example from Leatherman:

Leatherman exampleYou can also consider using animated GIFs. Yes, animated GIFs have been around for a while now, they’re still engaging and a great alternative to video. Plus, they are widely supported. Be playful, and have fun with your audience.

Offer Something New and Exciting

It’s always good to make your emails less predictable and catch your audience off guard. Throw a wacky campaign at them every once in a while. My definition of wacky is something that makes your brand memorable and gives subscribers a reason to come back and visit you.

Check out this example from Warby Parker. The goal of the email is to tout their new frames; however, they did it with a road trip checklist. What a clever idea that’s fun and unique. Way to stand out!

Warby Parker exampleAnother clever idea is using personalized animation. In this example,  Helzberg Diamonds really takes first-name personalization to the next level. Every subscriber got to see their name displayed on a bracelet – what a cool idea!

Helzberg Diamonds exampleMake Your Subject Lines Stand Out

The strategy here is pretty simple. Add some detail to give your message that extra oomph in a cluttered inbox. Sometimes, emojis or special characters will do the trick. And not only are they eye-catching, emojis also allow you to convey a particular mood with just a single character.

Aside from special characters, you can also follow a few best practices to help your message stand out. Pose a question to your subscribers, use personalization, come up with an off-beat phrase or incorporate a sense of urgency. Here are a few examples of these tactics:

Subject Line examplesWith so much competition, it’s important to think of new ways to give your brand the edge. Try a few of these tips to kick things up a notch and give your subscribers the memorable and engaging interactions they’re looking for. Have fun with your subscribers, and they’ll be more likely to come back again and again.


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