Why Testing the Rendering of Every Email You Send Increases Your ROI

Email design is a moving target. Whether marketers like it or not, it’s impossible for them to create a single email design, because the rendering of any individual email changes depending on the email client used to view it, the screen size used to view it, and many other factors.

By our calculation, every email has more than 15,000 different potential renderings. The challenge is to manage and control that variability through savvy coding and design. And you can’t do that if you’re not preview testing every email you create.

While doing this takes extra time and involves extra costs, the effort is well rewarded. Email programs that test every email they send report generating an average return on investment of 40-to-1, whereas programs that test less frequently or not at all report an average ROI of 35-to-1, according to Email Marketing ROI: The Factors that Lead to Better Returns.

Even beyond ROI, email preview testing correlates strongly with success. For example, marketers who describe their email marketing programs as successful are 20% more likely than those at less-successful programs to test every email they send (58% vs. 49%), according to Litmus’ 2018 State of Email Workflows.

There are 3 reasons for why marketers need to remain vigilant about the rendering and functionality of their emails…

>> Read the entire post on the Litmus blog

The Last Word on December 2018

A roundup of email marketing articles, posts, and tweets you might have missed last month…The Last Word

Must-read articles, posts & reports

The Email Innovations That Most Interest Consumers (MarketingProfs)

You can now ask Amazon Alexa to read your email messages and respond by voice — here’s how (CNBC)

Verizon says Oath is dead. Meet Verizon Media Group. (NBC News)

Insightful & entertaining tweets

Noteworthy subject lines

Chipotle, 12/18 – Watch the bowl with a bowl, delivered FREE
Banana Republic, 12/17 – Infinite parties await (here’s what to wear)
Banana Republic, 12/23 – Watch the ball (and everyone’s jaws) drop
Burlington, 12/17 – Goodbye 2018, hello new dress
Lane Bryant, 12/1 – Spend your weekend with self-gifting deals!
Panera Bread, 12/6 – Chad, give a $50 gift card, get a $10 bonus card.
Saks Fifth Avenue, 12/6 – Saks Fashion Director’s go-to gifts to give & get
Saks Fifth Avenue, 12/11 – What Pierre Mahéo of Officine Générale is gifting this year…
FansEdge, 12/15 – SHHH…Don’t Tell. Gifting Cheat Sheet Inside
T.J.Maxx, 12/4 – Made in Italy: luxe for less.
Michaels, 12/11 – Trendy Tuesday: Handmade gifts for everyone on your list.
REI, 12/15 – Stuff Their Stockings with More than Socks
Dick’s Sporting Goods, 12/5 – Finish Your List! Up to 50% Off Deals, Gifts & More
Bass Pro Shops, 12/11 – Clock’s ticking! Last chance to stretch your payments
Walgreens, 12/17 –Still shopping? 25% off ends tomorrow!
UncommonGoods, 12/18 – Got a Minute? We’ve Got Last-Minute Gift Ideas
RH, 12/18 – Last Call for Standard Holiday Shipping. Order by 12/19 at Noon EST for 12/24 Delivery.
Everlane, 12/20 – Gift Cards To The Rescue
Petco, 12/21 – FINAL HOURS: 20% off your in-store purchase
Aeropostale, 12/23 – Final Hours For Buy Online Pick Up In Store
Target, 12/6 – Yesss! 20% off select LEGO + savings on must-have toys.
Lane Bryant, 12/6 – Bra-la-la-la-la…$19.50 cotton bras!
Saks Fifth Avenue, 12/25 – To: You // From: You – Up to 60% off shoes, bags, etc.
Everlane, 12/1 – Super Limited. Super Human.
Starbucks, 12/18 – Santa has elves. You have coffee.
Epicurious, 12/15 – Announcing the winners of the Epicurious Cookbook Awards
Office Depot, 12/11 – In-App Coupon – Valid Today Only!
West Elm, 12/8 – When your home IS the Instagram inspo…

New posts on EmailMarketingRules.com

Happy Holidays!

Our Favorite Litmus Blog Posts of 2018

Our Favorite Litmus Reports of 2018

Our Favorite Litmus Webinars of 2018

Webinar Recording + Q&A: Key Insights from a Year of State of Email Research

Help us help you by participating in Litmus’ 2019 State of Email Survey

Our Favorite Talks from the Litmus Live 2018 Season

13 Email A/B Testing Mistakes

The Last Word on November 2018

2019 Email Experience Council Awards

The Email Experience Council is accepting nominations for their 2019 EEC awards until Feb. 1. Get your submissions in now for the following awards:

The 2019 eec Stefan Pollard Email Marketer of the Year Award

This award winner will be a brand-side marketer who is responsible for creating an Innovative Email Marketing Program; or may have achieved compelling results while under significant pressure or challenges from management; or might have achieved compelling results from their email marketing program by making a quantum leap forward in progress and sophistication.

The 2019 eec Email Marketer Thought Leader of the Year Award

This award winner will be someone who works at a digital agency; ESP; or 3rd-party service provider. They should have had a recognized impact on the email marketing community by fostering conversation around an industry issue or proposing a solution to an industry challenge. Or the nominee may have had an overall positive impact on the industry not limited to a single topic or issue.

I won this award last year and I can tell you that it feels amazing to be recognized by your peers for your contributions to the email marketing industry. If there is someone in the industry at an agency, ESP, or 3rd-party service provider whose advice or work you find value, please consider nominating them.

The 2019 eec Email Program Awards

This set of awards promotes excellence in email marketing. In particular, these awards will showcase the impact that email is having in the marketplace and within organizations. Most importantly, these awards will feature email campaigns that make us excited and proud of the work being done in our industry.

  1. Best Use of Data, including Automation and Triggers:
  2. Best Makeover of an Existing Email Program
  3. Best Use of Email in a Cross-Channel Campaign
  4. Best Nurture Campaign
  5. Best Use of Humor; Personality, Content, or Brand

For full details on each of these awards and for submission forms…

>> Visit the 2019 EEC Awards webpage

2019’s Top Email Design Trends

The Top Email Design Trends for 2019

This year you can expect to see more personalized emails, as well as more interactive emails. For the second year in a row, those two email design trends stood out above all others, according to a Litmus poll of more than 240 marketers.

The next tier of email design trends included using more AI-driven content and live content, and simplifying email designs. The other eight email design trends that we asked marketers about received a bit less enthusiasm, although they’re all still likely to be important this year.

To bring some perspective to these email design trends, we reached out to our friends at Action Rocket, Campaign Monitor, Trendline Interactive, Oracle, Really Good Emails, Yes Marketing, and Adobe. Let’s discuss each of these 13 email design trends in more detail.

To see the ranking of trends and a discussion of each one…

>> Read the entire post on the Litmus Blog

Live Optimization Notebook: Welcome & Onboarding Emails

Creating effective welcome and onboarding emails is hard—and many of your peers are struggling with the very same challenge.

In this notebook, onboarding email expert Val Geisler, Litmus Community & Product Evangelist Jason Rodriguez and I review welcome emails submitted by fellow email marketers and provide hands-on copywriting suggestions, design feedback, and strategic takeaways that you can apply to your own campaigns.

You will learn:

  • How to make a good impression above the fold
  • Why focusing on the most valuable call-to-action helps declutter your message
  • How to create a clear content hierarchy so your email is easy to scan
  • Why defensive design and optimizing for image blocking is key for effective onboarding emails

We’re bringing the spirit of the highly popular Live Optimization sessions at our Litmus Live conferences directly to your desk with this report. Download your copy to get the tips and inspiration you need to take your welcome emails to the next level.

>> Download the free guide

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays 2018

Whatever you celebrate, I hope your holidays are filled with family and fun. Best wishes, Chad

Our Favorite Litmus Blog Posts of 2018

Our Favorite Litmus Blog Posts of 2018

Litmus published more than 130 blog posts in 2018—that’s a lot of tips and resources!

Not sure where to get started? We asked some members of the Litmus marketing team to share their favorite blog resources of the year. Here’s what they said…

To learn why these are our favorites…

>> Read the entire post on the Litmus blog

Our Favorite Litmus Reports of 2018

Our Favorite Litmus Reports of 2018

Litmus published five reports and six whitepapers during 2018, covering a wide range of email marketing topics from analytics to email service providers and interactive emails to email’s return on investment. The reports and whitepapers we released during 2018 include:

That’s a lot of content. More than 135 pages of email marketing insights! (And those are just the reports. We also did webinars, infographics, and blog posts based on this research.)

Of course, we think every one of those reports is worth your time, but in case you’d like some guidance on which ones to read first, members of our marketing team have selected their top picks:

To learn why these are our favorites…

>> Read the entire post on the Litmus blog

Our Favorite Litmus Webinars of 2018

Our Favorite Litmus Webinars of 2018

Litmus hosted eight webinars during 2018, covering a wide range of email marketing topics from email workflows and how to start the year off right to the ESP industry and welcome emails.

That’s a lot of content. More than 8 hours of email marketing insights! (And those don’t include the webinars that did with our partners like Salesforce, SparkPost, and the Email Experience Council.)

Of course, we think every one of those webinars is worth your time, but in case you’d like some guidance on which ones to watch first, the members of our marketing team have selected their top picks:

To learn why these are our favorites and watch the webinars…

>> Read the entire post on the Litmus blog

The Last Word on November 2018

A roundup of email marketing articles, posts, and tweets you might have missed last month…The Last Word

Must-read articles, posts & reports

Email Accessibility: How to Craft the Perfect Accessible Email (EmailMonks)

The Challenges of Attribution in Email Marketing (OnlyInfluencers)

Introducing Reminders and Unsubscribe features in Yahoo Mail (Yahoo! Mail Blog)

Insightful & entertaining tweets

Noteworthy subject lines

Saks Fifth Avenue, 11/5 – Your “I Voted” sticker needs an outfit to match
American Red Cross, 11/2 – A friendly reminder for Daylight Savings Time
Panera Bread, 11/28 – Chad, an update on the romaine recall from the CDC.
Applebee’s, 11/2 – We’re Thanking Veterans With A Free Meal Nov. 11th
Aeropostale, 11/12 – In Honor Of Those Who Serve
Epicurious, 11/4 – Our 155 best Thanksgiving recipes
Hayneedle, 11/11 – 5 steps to a holiday-ready home …
West Elm, 11/15 – Up to 30% off SUPER deals to get you guest-ready
eBags, 11/4 – Heading Home For The Holidays?
Crate & Barrel, 11/1 – An early-early holiday gift: 15% OFF.
Nike, 11/13 – Nine great gift ideas for kids
Staples, 11/30 – Do your coworkers rule? Give them something great >>>
Saks Fifth Avenue, 11/30 – Your favorite person wants these…
Gap, 11/30 – This would look so good on you (it’s okay to self-gift)
RH, 11/2 – Introducing the Ultimate Faux Fur Holiday Collection
Lenovo, 11/21 – PCs starting at $99 – extremely limited quantities!
Lane Bryant, 11/28 – 2019 is coming FAST. Grab your glitter.
Brooks Brothers, 11/19 – Save 15%. Save lives.
Wayfair, 11/10 – SPOILER! Awesome WALL PANELING inside >>
Ikea, 11/2 – IKEA Wins J.D. Power Award
Neiman Marcus, 11/4 – Be the best-dressed wedding guest
Anthropologie, 11/7 – Stand out in a marshmallow world.
Feeding America, 11/10 – We know we’re your favorite. Will you make it official?
P&G everyday, 11/2 — *Gasps.* *Clasps face.* *Happy tears.*
MAC Cosmetics, 11/17 – Say SOIRÉE NOT SORRY with These Fashion-Forward Gift Ideas
Clinique, 11/13 — #FindMyiD: It all starts now.

New posts on EmailMarketingRules.com

3 Reasons Brands’ Email Marketing KPIs Are Overly Focused on Engagement

Total Retail: Email Marketing’s ROI – Three Insights for Retailers

Report: 2018 State of Email Analytics

The Last Word on October 2018

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