In honor of the new Fantastic Four movie release, we wanted to share four fantastic email marketing trends! Just as each member of the Fantastic Four brings a different ability to the group, these email marketing trends all have a significant impact when used together. Learn how each trend can help improve your email strategy and how each one matches up with one of the Fantastic Four characters.
1. Increase of Mobile Users - Thing
Every year seems to bring a new mobile trend. While mobile email marketing is nothing new, there are still many emails out there that haven’t caught up with this trend. Much like Thing, mobile users have only increased in strength and will definitely endure beyond other trends. With approximately half of all email opens from mobile, marketers simply can’t ignore the need to optimize the user experience for mobile—especially if they want to effectively communicate their message.
It’s also important to be aware of what might turn away mobile users:
- Frequency of emails – Target your emails to your audience and don’t send them too frequently.
- Irrelevance – Create relevant emails to ensure that your contact is not turned off by a message that doesn’t relate to them.
- Difficult to read/interact with – For emails that aren’t optimized for mobile, marketers may miss out on reaching a large number of their contacts if their emails are not optimized for mobile.
- Website/landing pages not mobile optimized – Keep in mind that not only should your email be responsive, but the landing pages you’re linking to should be optimized as well.
2. Responsive Email Design – Mr. Fantastic
Much like Mr. Fantastic, who can stretch himself into different shapes and sizes, responsive email must be flexible to the device on which it’s being viewed. Regardless of the email, it’s crucial to optimize for multiple devices and email services. This format allows your mobile users to easily view your emails on the go.
There are a few things to remember when updating your email format. Responsive emails should include straightforward messaging, which means cutting down on complex design elements and eliminating long-form copy. However, as vital as responsive email is, it can be difficult to optimize design for every email client or device out there.
Potential complications may include:
- As devices come in many different screen resolutions, a responsive email needs to be as fluid as a responsive website.
- Gmail strips CSS blocks. No CSS blocks means no media queries. Depending on your coding strategy, no media queries means no responsive emails.
- Outlook in general can be even trickier for responsive emails, since it doesn't acknowledge conditional statements.
- Some email platforms only allow for a specific character count within their HTML editors. This can force marketers to make tough choices when it comes to the messaging and presentation.
- Each version of the Android operating system behaves differently. An email that looks good on one version may look messy on another.
Key factors for designing responsive emails:
- Design with mobile in mind and use a single column layout.
- If possible, make sure you use inline CSS to handle major design elements.
- Use strong pre-headers, otherwise known as enticing text to open the email.
- Use larger, standard Web fonts (Arial, Tahoma, etc.) for body copy and a prominent call-to-action.
- Use images responsibly, meaning don't use too many or take up too much space.
- Make sure you test all devices – desktop, mobile, tablet.
- Create a list of email platforms you absolutely need to support, and keep that list up-to-date. Responsive emails are large investments of time. A condensed list of supported clients allows for a more efficient use of time and resources. After all, you can’t support everything.
3. Increase Social Sharing Through Email – Human Torch
People love to share with their social networks. Just as Human Torch can surround himself in flames, social shares can quickly catch fire as well. For successful email marketing, it’s essential to allow users to easily share your content with one click. This not only improves the user experience, but their connections will see your content, which means you’ll reach an entirely new audience.
How can you add social share buttons to your email? If you don’t have a designer who can help, you can usually add them with a widget in your email platform and/or find social share icons by searching for them online. Just be sure to do your research first, and use the correct icons for each social platform.
4. User Email Engagement – Invisible Woman
Just as Invisible Woman is unseen at times, the way your users engage with email is not always visible either. While it's frequently discussed, how often can you see the results? If you’re not seeing engagement results, consider following these tips on how to re-engage users with your email marketing:
- Make your emails easy to read – Keep your message on track by highlighting the important points and sticking to the main message of the email.
- Include a next step – The call-to-action, or CTA for short, is an easy, but important way to continue engaging your users. Based on who moves on to the next step, you can see who is engaged with your content.
- Track your email – While knowing how many people open and click on your email is important, you’ll also want to track how users interact with your site once they arrive there from your email. You can better analyze these interactions by adding Google Analytics tracking links. Some email clients will allow you to automatically add these links. If you’re not able to add them automatically, you can create custom links with Google’s URL builder.
- Include the call-to-action at the top of your email – Many users won’t scroll all the way to the bottom of the email, so why not make it easier for them and include the call-to-action near the top of the email?
- Be sure to link your images – Users are typically drawn to click on images in emails, so it’s important to remember to link them to your site. It’s also important to make sure all of your images include ALT text, so subscribers can read a short message before they download the images.
- Send a last chance email – Whether it’s for an offer or cart abandonment, many users will forget to return unless you remind them.
Want to see better results from your email marketing? Learn how Evolve Marketing can help your company better reach its audience.