Boot Camp Revisited: An Email Cheat Sheet From Dotmailer

Hey, email marketer: Have you forgotten what it was like starting out? Do you remember the mistakes you made? The basics still apply.

Dotmailer has devised a cheat sheet for helping beginners and veterans alike. Keep these best practices in mind.

'Friendly from' name —  They’ll think it’s spam if they don’t recognize it.

Subject line — You have to tell them what to expect in the email 

Pre-header text — This, too, can tip off the reader on what to expect. It’s the short summary that follows the subject line when the email is opened. 

Headlines — Headers have to be actionable. Tell readers what you’d like them to do while revealing the content.

Bulletted points — They’re easier to read than paragraphs, and work better on mobile devices.

Get personal — Demographic and behavioral data will help you tailor copy to grab their interest. Dynamic content also works well when based on transactional and social interest data. 



Segments — Some are simple: i.e., male or female, age, locale and subscribers who have never opened an email campaign. Others are more complex — for example, males or females ages 16 to 25, living in New York, who have not opened any of the emails sent in the last six months. 

Landing pages — A targeted landing page can drive sales and customer relationships. Offer mobile responsive, fully personalized pages.

Results — You need a reporting template that can summarize the following:

  • Number of emails sent
  • Deliverability rate
  • How many emails were opened 
  • The number of recipients who clicked through
  • How many people unsubscribed
  • Conversion tracking and return on investment — you can’t argue with the numbers.

Sounds simple, doesn’t it? It is when you have the right tools. Here are some additional tips: 

  • Try a humorous, personal or emotional approach to stand out. Discounts and local references help too. 
  • Keep the copy short and sweet.
  • Use plain text— some email clients and apps can’t handle HTML — and some people turn it off.
  • Make sure yo ur call-to-action button contains copy that makes them click. Use verbs like “register” or “download.”
  • Test. You can do simple A/B tests on things like subject line variations, different copy lengths and the best time of day to send 
  • Look at the full picture. You may be getting a good open rate but few click-throughs. And don’t forget to leverage your reporting. 
1 comment about "Boot Camp Revisited: An Email Cheat Sheet From Dotmailer".
Check to receive email when comments are posted.
  1. Peter Rosenwald from Consult Partners, March 6, 2018 at 7:39 p.m.

    Good set of reminders, Ray.

    It might also be useful for boot campers to remember the classic:

    Tell them what you are going to tell them (the headline);

    Then tell them (the content and benefits);

    Then tell them what you told them and what they can do about it (the close and call to action).

    You'll be surprised how powerful this is. 

Next story loading loading..