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E-Mail Creative Checklist 3

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What should I do when I proof the copy of my html newsletter?

E-Mail Creative Checklist 3

Review HTML Newsletter Copy in the Design Before Any Major Changes! All copy looks different once integrated into a html newsletter design. Somehow, e-mail copy looks more different than most. The standard guidelines for e-mail copy:

  • Short, concise paragraphs and message
  • Bullet points whenever possible
  • Key benefits and at least one call to action with a hyperlink above the fold

After a few internal revisions, we now present the first draft of copy to clients as part of the design for two reasons.
  • First, we found we were frequently asked to expand the first draft copy, only to be asked to remove much of it after it was incorporated into the design. The revision was clearly too long for e-mail, anyway. That's a waste of our and the clients' time.
  • Second, we learned a great design can get the message across as well as or better than copy.

A good example is a project where the client, after reviewing the first draft copy alone, felt we needed to focus more on the brand. A few hours later, that same client saw the design template, which did a great job of showcasing the brand. They decided the copy was fine as it was. The design did the heavy brand-lifting; the copy didn't have to. Another html newsletter tip: Even though it's online, print it out. You can focus, make notes, and (if necessary) cut and paste to see if there's a better layout. As much as I love doing things digitally, proofing copy and design is a task better conducted offline.

   

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Patricia Walters-Fischer