Hello! Welcome to the August Edition of Emails That Do Work, the blog series where we dissect some of our favorite user emails, and talk tips on how to optimize our own.

Outstanding Dining

Our first email of the month comes to us from OutstandingDining.com, an online market place for gift certificates that benefits patrons, supports local restaurants and gives back to the community within the Twin Cities.

Why it works

  • Branding: This email is a spitting image of the website (www.outstandingdining.com). From layout to colors, you as a reader know and trust this email because it is branded so well. My favorite part? Even the images flashing on the website homepage match the images in the email. Fancy.
  • Window Effect: It’s common to see an email with sections broken up by boxes, but rare to see this effect. Notice, instead of simply placing text and photos on the background, Outstanding Dining used boxes, but created separation by letting the background color shine through. This not only helps each section stand out on their own, but keeps the email looking like a whole piece.

Luis & Oscar Realtors

Second, we have Luis & Oscar Realtors from Coconut Grove, FL. This particular piece is an invitation to an Open House.

Why it works

  • Short & Sweet: It’s obviously easier for an invitational email to be short and sweet, but it’s a great concept that all types of emails should try. Logo, header, details, footer and contact info. What more could an email need?
  • Color Coding: Digging through our community of emails, I continued to come across emails that were constructed so nicely, but were missing the aspect of color. If you’re unsure about which colors to use when creating a beautiful email, always start with your logo. Next, look at the images you used and attempt to pull colors from them. This invitation does a phenomenal job using colors from the company logo and applying them throughout the whole email.

Creativity International Awards

Last, but of course not least, is the Creativity International Awards, one of the longest running independent international advertising and graphic design competitions.

Why it works

  • Block Layout: Similar to email #1, this piece sections itself using a block like method. Though they are alike, this email uses a different color throughout the sectioning instead of the background color. Regardless, they nailed the concept of using blocks as sections, and make it easy for readers to navigate around the email.
  • The Skinny: This is the first time I have seen an email with a background that is thinner than the email itself, and I must say I like it! At first glance I thought the top banner probably wasn’t large enough, until I saw the bottom of the piece and realized it was on purpose. Take a chance and try something “wrong” when it comes to your email design layout. You’ll be surprised how right “wrong” may feel.