Anyone who has battled with email marketing software will have asked themselves ‘why are email templates difficult to create?’
We have all received emails from a company as a part of their marketing campaign. Whether it was from signing up to a new website or purchasing something new, we have all been added to someone’s subscription list to receive their emails.
Email campaigns are an important and useful tool when it comes to selling as it allows us to promote ourselves, our brand and/or our product. In our current modern market, emails are a powerful and personal way to connect with clients and customers. Even eMarketer has observed 80% acquisition and retention rates for customers from emails, as opposed to their 44-50% rates from social media.
So why aren’t they easier to build? Why do they have to be so hard?
To send one email is easy but to set up a schedule for each email you create to send at different times to different lists is where it gets difficult.
So what are the key components of an email campaign?
- Email templates
The first part of an email campaign is the actual email and is arguably the most difficult component to create. For the email, you have to create an email template which contains what you want to send and how you want it to look.
The way email templates achieve this is through a type of code called HTML. This code is what tells the email servers what your email content is, but also how you want it to look. It is what tells Google or Outlook to display the font to your recipients as large, bold and red, rather than just normal text.
By writing your email templates in straight code, it allows you full creative rights in what you want and how you want it to look. Adding in extra spacing just involves adding in a <br> tag or changing the line height of the text is to just alter the p style or altering the image margin is to just add the style to the image source code.
Have I lost you yet?
Whilst writing email templates directly in HTML code grants you full creative license, you actually have to be able to write and alter that code.
So what can you do if you don’t know how to write in HTML?
This is where all these email campaign tools have tried to make things easier for us. Most of these apps will utilize a ‘drag and drop builder’ instead of relying on us knowing the secret language of code. These tools take the need to code out of the build, as the builders fill in the code for you when you choose one of their components to use.
You may be limited to the components they have available, but it is definitely a step towards making this email campaign business more simple and accessible to everyone, not just those with anIT degree.
- The campaign itself
Now that you have an easy way to build the email component, the next step of the process is setting the campaign.
The campaign itself contains the list of people you want to send these templates, what email templates you want to send and at what times you want to send them.
Image source: ‘Sentia’ app
Once you have designed and created your email templates, most email campaign builders simply need you to select which ones are to go, however many days after the last step, whether that is 2, 7 or 14 days later. But this scheduling can’t just be guesswork about when to send. To be most effective, you will want to set these emails to send when your targets are most likely to open and read it.
According to research Hubspot has compiled, the time with the highest click-to-open rate was at 10am and then again at 1pm, meaning these times have the best chance for the recipients of the email campaign to actually open the email. They also found that the best day to send emails is a Thursday.
Image source: ‘Campaign Monitor’
After you decide the when for these emails to send, it is easy to complete the campaigns simply by sending the first step with these tools and then letting them continue to send the rest of your emails.
Unfortunately creating the email templates to look exactly how you want them will always be tricky, even if you do know how to code in HTML. However these email campaign builders do their best to protect you from this code and simplify things down so you can just send your emails and get down to business trying to sell your products.