Sending e-shots is nothing new and has been part of the marketing mix for years.
However, many companies are put off including this in their strategies. Why? Because we all hate getting annoying spam emails, and because junk filters now render many bulk emails useless. But that is not a reason to avoid e-shots.
Your customers will want to hear from you, having signed up to your newsletter themselves. E-shots are a simple and cost-effective method of reaching your them, direct to their device.
The worst that can happen is they don’t react to what you’re sending or unsubscribe. Don’t view unsubscription as a bad thing; you only want engaged people in your audience, those who are most likely to buy.
Keep your monthly e-shot count low, between 1 and 4. Anything more will probably be annoying and will begin to switch people off. Keep them informational, with content that will benefit the recipient. If you’re in eCommerce, don’t make it too salesy and find a way to sell the benefits of what your product offers. If you’re offering a service, you can write blogs to educate your audience and include hints and tips.
And finally, grow your audience organically!! Going out and buying a list of 10,000 email addresses is a waste of time and money. Remember the old adage: quality over quantity. Better to have a small yet engaged audience than many email addresses that go nowhere.
Now to Build your Mailchimp Template…
Once you have created your account, you are ready to create your own pre-designed templates. These allow you to quickly create emails that are tailored to fit your brand. To do this, click the Brand drop-down and choose Templates then click Create Template.
Here you will have access to Layouts, Themes or the option to Code Your Own. As a Mailchimp beginner, and unless you have coding knowledge, we recommend sticking to the Layouts or Theme options.
Layouts give you more flexibility with the design and allows you to start designing from the building blocks Mailchimp have created:
Alternatively, if you want something even more simple than this, you can choose a Theme. Choose from a wide range of themes, grouped into purpose and industry.
To demonstrate starting from the beginning, more or less, we are using the Sell Products layout. A Mailchimp Template works in a series of blocks to create the overall email design. Each of these blocks can be edited and designed to fit your branding.
They can also be changed and swapped for another, depending on your design objective.
Available blocks are:
Ensure your images are in PNG, JPG or GIF format and make sure they are the highest resolution possible. This is due to the high-definition screens that your email will be viewed on across various devices. It’s a good idea to add alt text to your images. This is essential for accessibility and helps with search engine optimisation for your landing pages.
Image size allowances vary, depending on the number of columns in the email and the type of block you’re using. For a full list of recommended image sizes, click here
Once you have inserted your image, you are able to edit the styling and settings within the block editor.
Mailchimp will flag up if there are issues, which you can resolve in their suite editor
You are able to change the layout of blocks, even once they have been inserted
In order to insert a new block, simply drag and drop the element you want into the right part. Moving the blocks around once inserted is easy enough; hover your mouse over the element and at the left there is a four-pointed icon. Use that to drag and drop the block.
You can change almost anything in the design of a Mailchimp Template. Don’t forget to consider:
- Font style, colour, size, design, alignment, line height
- Background colour/edging style
- Buttons & hyperlinked areas/text
- Social media icon links
Once you are happy with your template, you can see it in preview mode. This option is at the top right of the design suite screen. It will take you to a preview like this:
You can also send yourself a test email so you can see it live, as a customer would. We would recommend doing this even for minor changes, as it can make a difference depending on email providers, screen resolutions and other factors.
There you have it!
Hopefully this guide to creating a Mailchimp Template has been useful. Once you have a template created, you can then go on to create in-keeping, on-brand e-shots to send to your focused audience groups! If you have any queries, or would like to know more, please get in touch with us and we’ll happily help out!