The From Line

Sending, Managing & Monetizing Email

Make eMail Creative by Including a Preview Pane

When you start an email marketing campaign, capturing the attention of your customers is the primary goal. That means making your email creative in some way. A preview pane is a very easy method to do just that.

Understand the Basics of a Preview Pane

The preview or reading pane is a common feature on most email systems, such as Outlook and Yahoo! Mail. It allows viewers to preview messages in their inbox without opening them. This enables them to view messages safely without the possibility of activating or opening malicious scripts or attachments.

The benefit to your marketing campaign is you allow your recipients to glimpse your message before they open it. If it looks like spam, they delete it immediately. If it appears to be from someone familiar – like a reputable brand – they open it.

Therefore, the subject and look of your email message are critical to catching the eye and attention of your recipients. Things you don’t want readers to see until the end – unsubscribe, disclaimers, and such – should be left until the end.

Building a Good Preview Pane

As this MarketingSherpa blog suggests:

The preview pane is your prime real estate to pull people into your email. In conjunction with the sender address and subject line, it’s the key to getting people to read your email.


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Is Your eMail Marketing Campaign Sending the Right Message?

It seems like using email to market your products and services would be easy and straightforward. You prepare a standard marketing letter, drop it into an email, hit the send button, and off it goesright into your customers’ trash.

Putting together a creative and winning email marketing campaign takes more than just throwing together the same old marketing letter. Your email should include a clear message with a call to action.

Create a Clear Message with a Call to Action
Your email marketing campaign may look good. It may even read well. However, if your message isn’t clear, customers may be overwhelmed and become frustrated.

An unclear message may occur when your email:

Contains too much information. That old saying, “less is more,” applies here. You may want to extend multiple offers to your customers. However, according to an August 2012 article at Huffington Post “office workers spend an average of 2.6 hours per day reading and answering emails.” That means many people have very little patience by the end of the day. Smaller email marketing campaigns are a better option.

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Dreamweaver issue with Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)

This document addresses an issue that we have seen with HTML code that has been generated through Adobe DreamWeaver CS4 and CS5.  Please see the below example of code, paying special attention to the portions highlighted in red.

 
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Message Mashups and Automated Assembly

When most people think of mashups and automation with regards to email marketing, the thought of data sharing and intertwined applications usually come to mind.  However, these terms can easily apply to messages even though most email marketers rarely take advantage of such mashup technologies.  In fact, a large portion of email marketing budgets and time are spent performing message assembly and managing content.  Dynamic content features have helped to alleviate some of the complexities of message assembly but it falls short in bridging the gap between desperate content sources and precision timing for delivery.  This is one of the reasons why SMS and Twitter have usurped email for mobile delivery of commercial messages.  

The answer to help unwind some of the vagaries of message assembly is incorporating RSS feeds into email messages.  This process is somewhat ironic since a few years ago RSS pundits were pronouncing the death of commercial email with the medium’s popularity.   Sad for them however, RSS never took off as they had hoped and marketers never took too much stock in the medium’s ability to capture eyeballs.   Yet RSS as a delivery medium on the wholesale side of email marketing provides much promise that has been overlooked over the years.

Web Publishing to Email

Many email newsletters today are comprised of articles from a website with four or five line teasers and a link back to the actual article.  With the simple incorporation of an RSS feed to a pre-defined template, an email marketer can save countless hours cutting, pasting and configuring text automating the majority of the message assembly process.  The RSS feed not only includes text but can also include images as well as the “Read more…” link.

Web Publishing from Multiple Sources

For the email marketer that needs to work with multiple web sources the same thing can be done as with a single source.  An example of this is the Smart Brief news updates provided by many trade associations that compile news and information from a number of sources.  As valuable as this service is, it is simply a daily compilation of RSS feeds from different news sources delivered via email.

Automated Item Stock and Price Alerts

Some very large retailers who provide automated item stock and price alerts from their website have laboriously spent hundreds of programming hours to provide this service.  Using a simple RSS to email feed, a small or mid-sized retailer can easily and affordably provide an automated email update to subscribers every time a hot item is in stock or there has been a price drop.  

Redistributing Social Media and Web 2.0

In addition to RSS feeds from websites, you can include Twitter and other types of social media feeds with automated timed delivery as soon as the feeds are updated.  This process helps to reach parts of your subscriber base that’s not always in the social media loop.  Aside from Twitter updates, you can also automate the inclusion of blog and feedback content using an RSS to email process widening their reach and saving you time during the message assembly process.

Gold Lasso now provides an RSS to email feature at no additional charge.   Gold Lasso offers eLoop as an all inclusive system – meaning we never charge extra for advanced features that are developed by Gold Lasso programmers.  If you would like to learn how to use this feature please contact your Account Manager for guidance and instructions.

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Quick Unorthodox Fix to the Spacer.gif Debacle

Since Microsoft decided to set Email Marketing back a few years by using Word's rendering engine , I see a fitting simple yet unorthodox kick in the hiney to them is in order. 

If you have ever worked your tail off to optimize your email message only to test it in Outlook 2007 (which for a split second before the preview kicks in gives you a nice false sense of hope) and watch it fall apart then here is a quick and simple solution that will work almost 100% of the time when spacer.gif’s are involved. 

Get ready for this solution because if you blink, you may miss it.  Rename your spacer.gif to spcer2.gif (or another file that doesn’t exist.)  I know that it’s completely unorthodox but it works.  I even tested it using Spam Assassin and it doesn’t change anything by having a few images that point to a preverbal black hole in Cyberspace.  If the message has a colored background, you may see a slim white line at the bottom of your message that may need to be tweaked a little bit, however if the background is white you will never notice it.

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The Email Monetization Playbook
Email Monetization Playbook
69 Must Scan Pages For Publishers!

Please publish modules in offcanvas position.

Email Monetization Playbook
69 Must Scan Pages For Publishers!