Welcome to Benchmark!

Denise Keller

Designing Email Templates for Men and Women

Jun 10 2011, 09:25 PM by

Are you a marketer who takes gender into account when designing your email templates? If not, we have some good reasons why you should give it some extra thought. There are a few studies showing that men and women react differently to email designs, information you can apply when putting together your email newsletters. These should be interesting findings for email marketers who want to get the most from their gender segmentation and targeting efforts.
Email Aesthetics
Newcastle University in the United Kingdom is renowned for the world class research it conducts in a broad range of areas. One of its more recent studies shows that men and women have different preferences when it comes to colors and various other email design aspects. According to the research, males prefer darker colors and prominent horizontal lines in email messages. Interestingly, the study found that females do not prefer pink. Instead, it showed that they like designs that have a variety of colors. This may not seem like a big deal, but how you use this information to design your templates could play a role in influencing clicks and even purchases.
Opt-out Tendencies
Another recent study, this one an analysis of email opt-out and complaint rates conducted by EmailVision UK, revealed some very interesting data about how genders respond to email communications. According to the study, women are more likely to unsubscribe from mailing lists and newsletters than men. The research cites being overwhelmed with messages in the inbox as the main reason for this.

Now this particular study did not deal with any findings in the way of email design, but did reveal information that could be used when designing your templates. For example, knowing that women are more likely to opt-out could mean that it would be wise to make your unsubscribe link more prominent and create more engaging designs to appeal to your female readers.
It Pays to Know Your Audience
Creating a gender-based email design is pretty straightforward when your catalog consists of products or services for men or women, or when your list is predominantly comprised of one sex or the other. However, it gets a bit more complex when your list is diverse and stocked with its fair share of both. When this is the case, you need to be very careful in your approach to design. Make the wrong move and you could end up offending some of your audience members or just plain striking out, neither of which is good.

So what is the best way to go about a gender-specific email design strategy? Know what your audience wants and what they are more likely to respond to. Statistics provide a good measurement, but in the end they should be viewed as merely that. The more you know your subscribers, the better chance you will have of creating designs and general communications that keep them engaged in spite of what market research may show.

Posted in Tips & Resources, Email Design & Templates

Related Blogs