When David Greiner decided to redesign the Campaign Monitor newsletter—rather than give it a simple facelift—he first studied the advice his company gave to customers. "Turns out we were breaking a number of the recommendations we'd been advocating for so long," he notes, "and it was time to remedy that." In a post at the Campaign Monitor blog, Greiner offers an in-depth discussion of his four redesign must-haves. Here's a snapshot:
The newsletter had to be readable, even with blocked images. Though the previous design already addressed this issue, Greiner took it a step further. "I moved away from the large image-based header graphic at the top of the email and kept every important bit of information as text," he explains. With the new design—shown in a screen shot at the blog post—a recipient won't see the image placeholder, and might not even realize that anything has been blocked.
It had to be optimized for preview panes. Again, nothing groundbreaking here, but Greiner also put a spin on this concept by dispensing with a preheader altogether and diving right into a Table of Contents. "My testing showed this key content was now visible in the preview pane of every popular email client I tested," he says, "even at a very low resolution."
In its inaugural week, the redesigned newsletter's click rate improved on the old design's average by a cool eight percent.
The Po!nt: Designer, heal thyself! Are you breaking any of your own newsletter design rules? If so, maybe it's time for a makeover.
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