Creating a Design that Supports and Enhances Your Content

Alex Mastrianni

When I was in college, I had the opportunity to visit the Chronicle Books’ headquarters in San Francisco with my graphic design classmates. I was immediately enamored with the quality, creativity, and thoughtfulness that the publisher puts into designing their products. Their dedication to releasing books that have a design that supports and enhances the content is evident with every book I’ve seen with the publisher’s name on it. So imagine my surprise when just a few days ago, I was reading my daughter a book and commenting to my husband how much I appreciated the story, illustrations, and design of the book (I’m looking at you, Steam Train, Dream Train), and I turned the book over to discover it was a Chronicle book.

As a marketer, I put even more value on a brand experience than a non-marketer might. I love stumbling upon brands who deliver a memorable, valuable experience time and time again. This type of continuity is what leads to brand loyalty. It’s why you always reach for the same brands of food when you’re grocery shopping. It’s why you search for a certain hotel chain every time you book a trip to a new place. You know exactly what to expect, because the brand has made a remarkable impression on you.

The same idea can be applied to your email design.

The design of an email sets the stage for the experience readers will have with your brand – right from their inbox! In the 2016 Digital Marketing Lookbook, we combed through our clients’ emails for the best of the best designs, and some of the brands that I believe are doing it best are creating a consistent, engaging, and seamless experience for their subscribers. Their design is supporting and enhancing their content with every scroll. Here’s how.

Consistent Look and Feel

Enhance Content with Continuity resulting in brand loyalty

Enhance Content on Websites to create brand loyalty

This example from Warren County CVB is a perfect example of design consistency. The image on the left is their email. The image on the right is their website. Clicks from their email are directed to their website – talk about a smooth transition! The colors, branding, imagery, text, and layout are identical. The chances of losing a subscriber in the conversion process drops when it’s clear to them that they are on the right path and being taken exactly where they want to go.

Set the Tone

Enhance Content in Email to create brand Loyalty

I’m not sure about you, but this looks like a conference I want to attend. Bright colors, the use of the palm tree image, and the clear display of pricing makes this email easy-to-read and pleasing to the eyes. I can almost get a feeling from this conference that it would be fun and informal, and full of friendly attendees.

Train your Subscribers

Enhance Content to create brand Loyalty

This organization buckets their news stories by category and color. Interested in event news? Cool – you know to look for red items each week. Looking to enhance your education? Watch out for the green stories. Don’t underestimate the use of color and how it can help you tell your story and help your readers better interact with you.

These are just a few of my favorite examples of how associations are using the design of their emails to better tell their stories and support their important content. For more inspiration, check out our 2016 Digital Marketing Lookbook.

About the Author
Alex Mastrianni

As the Marketing Manager at Informz, Alex drives the development and implementation of our content marketing plan and marketing campaigns. Outside of work, Alex is a pop culture junkie, ice cream fanatic, and semi-pro vacation planner.