The Minimalist’s Guide to Email Marketing: Keep It Simple


There are some basic truths when it comes to good email marketing.  One of those truths is this:  The most effective email campaigns include economic offers.

The primary reason people sign up for marketing emails is to receive discounts and promotions, according to a recent 2016 survey of 1,251 U.S. consumers between 14 and 67 years old, conducted by Adestra.  But that’s not the whole story.

Good email marketing

When it comes to email offers, more is not better. In fact, proven best practice is this: One Offer, One Email.  In other words, keep it simple.

According to Bob Fabbio, CEO of eRelevance Corp., a technology-enabled marketing automation service, “People are busy, so the faster they can read your email, the better.  Think scannable text and graphics that get to the point quickly.”

Your targets will likely skim to get the message, and what they want to read most is: What’s in it for me?  

Good Email Marketing Strategies

If your email is focused on a single offer (not a laundry list of specials), you satisfy and connect with your audience much faster. Ultimately, making connections, giving people what they want, and building relationships is what good email marketing is all about.  It accomplishes the all-important goal of establishing relationships with your brand and ensuring what you have to share is something people want to know.  It keeps your messages out of the trash.

Ensure your all-important offer is easily visible and that it’s clear how people can take you upon it. An effective call-to-action button that’s easy to spot for even the most expert email scanners is vital.

Like your offer, your call-to-action button should be very easy to digest.  Graphical clutter is one of the biggest deterrents when it comes to conversions in good email marketing. Too many fonts or colors will confuse and increase your unsubscribers.

Try to use no more than two to three typefaces, and keep colors and imagery consistent so your contacts know exactly what you’re offering and how they can quickly take advantage of it.

The simplicity rule applies to your subject line too.  According to Chadwick Martin Bailey, 47% of people say they open an email because of the subject line alone.  That makes the subject line the gatekeeper to your message and offer.   Ideally, you want to keep your subject line between 30 to 50 characters, but shorter is even better.

Before you hit, send on your next email campaign—from the subject line to text, graphics, and offer—simplicity is king.


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