The Anatomy of an Awful Marketing Email

How often do you think about junk mail? Probably not too often, because there’s a folder in your email that thinks about it for you, right?

But consider this: according to Return Path, marketing emails are responsible for 70% of ‘this is spam’ complaints. That means even if you don’t think about junk mail as a recipient, as a marketer, you should all be thinking about it all the time — specifically, whether your own marketing emails are part of that 70%.

So what if we just … stopped producing awful marketing emails entirely? Well to do that, we have to know just what makes an email so awful, So, I created my own truly awful marketing email, and am going to walk you through everything not to do in your own email marketing. Here, take a look for yourself!

The Anatomy of an Awful Marketing Email

 

email marketing bad ex

 

1) Write a Generic Subject Line

According to a survey by Blue Kangaroo, 43% of adults in the U.S. said more than half of their emails are from marketers. With half of your recipient’s emails promising deals, coupons, sales, and updates, why should they open yours? Subject lines like the one in the email above don’t tell your recipient anything — I mean, 40% off what product? And settle down with the exclamation points, why don’t ya? Your subject line should invite the recipient to do something, to experience something, to enjoy some kind of benefit. To totally nail your email subject line, reference this blog post that will show you the secret sauce for sexy subject lines.

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Does your digital marketing collateral pass the mobile test?

If you have anything to do with digital marketing, you’ll know the powerful impact mobile devices have had on the media.

So how much would it change your views if I told you that a few recent campaigns we’ve rolled out showed that 70% or more of all engagement was through mobile devices? Is your digital collateral geared for that level of mobile engagement?

Resolution, resolution, resolution

Probably one of the most important elements of any digital collateral, and for web designers, probably the most difficult to explain, resolution is all about how the document you’ve created adjusts itself to display on the screen the recipient is using.

The range of screen resolutions is enormous; in fact once you add mobile into the mix, you’re dealing with screens ranging from a tiny 240-pixel width to those in excess of 2500 pixels.

Effectively, this means that everything on the page – from the layout of text, to the visible size of the text, is going to change according to the device you’re viewing it on.

So, for example, your perfectly calculated text, that ends exactly in line with the image aligned in the right-hand column of the piece, is no longer going to be perfectly aligned – on a much smaller screen, it could read for effectively 2 pages longer than the bottom of the image you’ve so carefully aligned.

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