I regularly drive two different makes of cars: one has control stalks on both sides of the steering column, the other only on the left. One wonders if the designers want the windscreen wipers to be activated if I run someone over. I should not have to concentrate on something that could be automatic.
There are any number of mistakes to avoid in our business but one which is often forgotten is integration. Treating each email marketing campaign as special has certain attractions, and is an excellent method of avoiding your emails having the impact of grey porridge. However, there are traps to avoid.
We all like consistency: the reassurance of being in a familiar environment allows a reader to concentrate on content rather than wasting time and effort finding our way around. In its simplest form, if a call to action is always a pastel shade of red then when you convince a customer that the offer is just right for them, they can instantly go to it without much conscious effort.
However, you don’t want your email to be the same as those of your competitors. Your customers should know whom they are dealing with as soon as the marketing email or web page appears.
These two are obviously not the only interface between you and your customers. If you have a counter presence, attend trade fairs, have poster campaigns, mechanics attending customers or dedicated vehicles, then this corporate image should be reinforced.
For your online and email presence it goes beyond a simple logo as customers interact with your creations. They should be familiar with the layout and controls. No hunting for the hooter so to speak.
You will want to have your logo in a clear and prominent position on all pages, such as the email, the landing page, website, squeeze page and others. Beyond that it is a bit more subtle.
You should have a selection of typefaces and fonts: one for main headings, one for subs and another for text, chosen for readability and presence. In the case of headings, these are often the first thing that a subscriber will see. If it has a familiar appearance then they will not pause to admire how attractive it is but move on.
Once they have clicked through then the layout should be different, enough to show the reader that they have successfully clicked through, but similar enough to allow them to concern themselves with completion. Perhaps a slight change of background colour or header be enough.
The website, often the first contact a customer will have with you, should be of the same general design. There will be certain differences due to the different functions of each, but these should be kept to a minimum.
Follow-up, post transactional emails should also reflect the overall design of the marketing email.
Everyone is reassured by familiarity. This is especially so in marketing where a subscriber will probably have used your company before and have been pleased with the transaction. Commonality of design will instil in them the belief that this will be repeated.