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Eight best practices for creating an effective B2B email

Email marketing is one of the most effective (and cost-effective!) marketing strategies you can use to nurture client relationships and scale your business. 

These are our eight best practices for email design and copywriting to help you gain that competitive edge in the inbox.

  1. Make your subject line short – but captivating
    The subject line is the most important part of your email; it’s what entices the reader to open your email in the first place.
    • Keep it at around 40 characters (four to seven words) Consider including personalization, as emails with personalized subject lines are typically more likely to be opened (though this can vary by industry)
    • Pro tip: It’s a good idea to come up with two or more subject lines, so you can A/B test for which version gets the most opens

  2. Include a preheader
    A preheader is that line of text visible after the subject line in the inbox. It acts as a bridge between the subject of the email and its content.
    • Preheaders should be between 40-130 characters long
    • Include key message elements first, ensuring visibility on both desktop and mobile

  3. Make your email visually appealing
    • Begin with a hero image at the top of the email that showcases most important aspect of your content
    • Use a mix of colors, font sizes, typography and design elements to present a clear visual hierarchy
    • Include relevant images to make the email visually engaging and to improve readability
    • Ensure it looks great on both desktop and mobile
    • Don’t forget to include alt tags in case the recipient has images turned off

  4. Keep it concise and easy to digest
    • In general, stick to 20 or fewer lines of text including headlines, subtitles, and small paragraphs
    • It should be brief enough to be easily readable on small screens
    • Include one or more clickable links in the text
    • Use a bold font, a different color, and/or underlining to help identify links
  5. Make your headline stand out
    • The headline can be above or embedded in the hero image to give it more impact
    • It should be short – 1 to 5 words – and it counts towards that 20 lines of text
    • Use your headline as an opportunity to tell the recipient what to expect, and lead into a call to action: “Welcome to (Company Name)! Discover your special benefits.”

  6. Emphasize your call to action
    The point of the email is to encourage your subscriber to click through.
    • Make your clickable buttons large and contrasting so that they stand out
    • Use button text that gives an idea of what the subscriber can expect: “Download the Report”, “Claim Your Free Trial”, “Visit our Website”

  7. Add social media links and a link to your website navigation at the bottom of your email
    A recipient that makes it all the way to the bottom of your email is interested in what you have to say or offer. Give them a chance to engage further and to learn more about you by including links to your socials accounts and, at minimum, your website’s homepage in every email. Bonus if you include links to additional relevant pages on your website.

  8. Perform A/B testing on every email to find what works best for your campaign.
    It’s endlessly valuable to test your content. That way you can discover which content or design option gains the most traction. What if you can increase conversion by changing the colors of the CTA buttons? Or what if you get a better open rate by changing the subject line? Small changes can add up to big success.

When done right, B2B email marketing can pave new avenues of success for any business. Give these ideas a try. We’d love to hear how it goes!

Want more tips customized to your campaign? Drop us a line…we would love to help.

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