When designing a next-level marketing email, it’s all about finding balance – a seamless blend of words and visuals that will captivate your audience and make them want to pursue more of your wisdom.
However, far too often, content takes a backseat to aesthetics, and marketing pros are left crafting the look of their copy rather than the actual substance of the message.
They’ll focus more on how many images should be in the email design, how much text is acceptable, or how big and fat the font should be. Although these attributes are important when crafting your message, they are irrelevant if the message is weak.
And for the modern trade show exhibitor, email marketing is key to building an audience before the convention center doors open, so the message needs to be strong with an obvious value proposition.
Because you want your campaign to lead to meaningful conversations at the booth, your messaging needs to be clear and concise for attendees to seek you out at the show.
But yes, back to the whole aesthetics thing; Images enhance your message, and you will need that visual component to educate and provide value. A good set of visuals will add a layer that makes your brand more recognizable during the months leading up to the show.
Remember: A marketing campaign is almost nothing without some form of visual content. And unless you are writing a very personalized note to one attendee, forget about text-heavy campaigns.
But what is the right balance of images and text? Is it enough to just throw four or five JPEGs in your template, add captions, and assume your audience will just flock to your website to view the latest case study or product announcement?
If they are very familiar with you and your company, then maybe. But for the rest of the names in the show database, they likely don’t know your brand, so they will need more convincing.
And with that in mind, we wanted to highlight three tips on how to effectively blend imagery and text to create top-notch copy and help make your next campaign a little more convincing.
1. DON’T GET FILTERED!
Seriously – no marketing pro wants to be the reason their company name gets filtered because of their spammy-looking emails.
Unless you are Nike, emails that are too image-heavy may end up in the spam box. So keep the balance. Mailchimp knows email campaigns, and their content team recommends a ratio of 80-20. So 80% text and 20% visuals.
Remember: Many email providers may completely restrict images, so unless a recipient chooses to allow them, they won’t even see the slick-looking JPEG your designer spent a few days working on.
So, please start your email copy with text so the user can quickly understand the nature of your message and then continue on to a strong call to action.
2. KEEP IT SEARCH FRIENDLY
If most of your content is images, then a user may not find your most recent piece of wisdom in their inbox. If they search “additive manufacturing trends” or “3D printers,” and that’s your forte, then ideally your email should show up – but only if you added these keywords in the text.
Make sure that all your principal content is within the text and avoid embedding it within an image. If it’s embedded in the image, it may look cool, but it’s not searchable, and you may get lost in their inbox.
Why make your designer do extra work if it’s not necessary?
This seems to be a common theme in many of our posts, but for adding in images, it’s even more important.
Avoid stock photos and keep it authentic!
If you are promoting an open house, show a nice photo of your gleaming shop floor.
Promoting a new machine? Please don’t just show an image from your catalog. Instead, make it real. Show a machinist putting it to use. In action! Application is always more effective than just showing the product. And in our industry, it’s all about application.
Manufacturers will relate better to this approach and appreciate your story. Plus, they will get more comfortable with your brand and hopefully start researching more into your offerings.
In these modern times, an exhibitor needs to create compelling – and relatable – content in order to win the interest of prospective attendees. If done right, visuals can really help to enhance your story and expand your audience. But without good copy, it’s just fluff.
At the end of the day, these are just some suggestions, there is no right or wrong answer as to how you should design your next campaign. As long as you keep it genuine and make something that you would open up and read yourself, then you will resonate with attendees and expand your audience.
Exhibitor Passport provides all the tools for IMTS exhibitors to design their email copy and send directly to pre-registered attendees. With convenient drag-and-drop features, exhibitors can quickly add and edit images and properly embed them into the built-in email editor.
If you already have access to Exhibitor Passport and would like more tips on good email design – or are interested to see how it works – please reach out to me and we can set up a quick demo.
This is the second article in our series on exhibitor marketing for IMTS 2022. Be sure to check out the full list of articles here: