A brand is a powerful tool for agencies and customers that provides a framework for how a company presents itself to the world and how it interacts with customers. However, brands are only useful if they are used and applied consistently.
Fortunately, email marketers have some secret weapons to enforce and maintain branding standards for their customers, starting with the always important ones custom email marketing template. With the right tools and a little bit of persuasiveness, you can help your customers become branded powerhouses and provide compelling service they can’t live without.
Explain to customers the importance of brand consistency
Getting the value of brand consistency is easy for many agency marketers, but for some clients, it’s not always a priority.
Even if they do, that care and consideration may not extend to email. While email is often recognized as a powerful tool for communication and sales, its importance as part of the branding experience is sometimes overlooked.
If you can sell your customers the importance of branding consistency in their emails, this is good business for you too. If you are their expert who understands their brand better than anyone, you get a lot “stickier” and make a stronger argument when Send email to your accounts. Make sure your customers understand some of the key benefits of enforcing branding standards:
Cross-channel consistency has a huge impact on overall performance.
The consistency of experience and message between email and other digital and traditional channels improves a brand’s overall reputation and increases the likelihood of customers buying. It’s a situation where “all ships rise with the tide”: The consistency between an email and a website makes one social media post much more engaging, which in turn helps radio ads stand out better and the next E-mail is more likely to open, and so on.
Research from the Interactive Advertising Bureau states that seeing a consistent message across a variety of channels can improve purchase intent by 90% and brand awareness by 68%.
Here’s a great example of improving cross-channel marketing to really bring home a big advertisement. Taco Bell is running a giveaway campaign for the new Xbox console, making sure the message and branding for the campaign is visible all over. It’s in emails, social posts on the restaurant’s website … even on their mugs (thanks @RoxieThorne for the picture of the cups).
Improving the important customer experience.
The customer experience has become one of the most important competitive differentiators and factors in consumer decision making. A Poll by PwC Found customers are willing to pay up to 16% more for a superior experience, and 63% say they are more willing to share information with brands that can offer great experiences. On the other hand, about one in three people will give up a brand they like if they have a negative experience.
Consistent, coherent branding is a big part of delivering a good experience. However, inconsistencies can be confusing and frustrating, disrupt the customer journey, and lead to business loss and loyalty. When it comes to meeting expectations for experience, there is still something companies in most industries have to do.
Even a little bit of consistency can go a long way in the inbox.
Emphasize that it doesn’t take a lot of effort to get your brand basics into an email strategy. Even the basics – using a familiar logo, branding language, and presenting content with the same color scheme – can be enough to make a difference.
We love this simple, powerful example of Insomnia Cookies. The cookie delivery and collection service ensures that a mobile-friendly version of the logo is displayed in the e-mail client. And just like Pavlov’s dogs, customers will have their mouth watering every time they see it – even before they read the subject line or even open the email. Small adjustment, powerful result.
The easy way to customize your customers’ branding standards
Customizing and incorporating another company’s branding guidelines into your own workflow and tools can be a chore, especially if the customer doesn’t have a strict document that lists colors, logo versions, font styles, etc.
If you need a quick and easy way to “port” a customer’s branding into your custom email marketing templates, the Campaign Monitor platform is for you. With the built-in branding template tool, it’s easier than ever to create beautiful custom newsletters that look like they’ve been carefully crafted just for you. Just enter your client’s website and we’ll take care of pulling out color schemes, logos, and more so you can paste them right into your templates!
This tool is also great if you’re more of a self-service model, where customers do most of their own emails while you support and advise them. It’s easy to activate the functionality through your agency account and make it available to clients, minimizing frustrations and development issues.
Create custom email marketing templates for clients with ease
Designing a custom template for a client can make them feel like they are receiving royal treatment. The Campaign Monitor email builder helps you create special templates that look great and perform well without using a lot of resources.
First navigate to “My Templates” on the platform and select the option you want for your requirements:
Option 1. Choose a design: Our pre-made designs suitable for mobile devices are ready to be adapted and modified in any way required. They have been artfully made and scientifically optimized for performance: the perfect starting point for any custom template. You can choose a design that you like and save it as a template to customize and use again later.
Option 2. Select from recent emails: Take an email you’ve been working on recently and update it for a specific customer. This is especially effective when you have a template layout that you know will work for a client that you want to translate into another account’s branding standards.
Option 3. Starting from scratch: Start with a blank canvas and save time by not removing everything in a template design first. If you have the talent for design and coding, this is a great option for creating something particularly spectacular or experimental.
Option 4. Upload from HTML: Have you already coded a great email template? Just upload it and modify it as needed.
Click here for more guides and tips on creating your own email templates.
Lock a trademark template
You may want to lock certain components of your custom templates in place once they are designed. This minimizes the extent to which the email can be edited and customized.
While locking a template reduces the customization options, these limitations provide several benefits to an agency.
By minimizing the variables that can be changed, you reduce the possibility of “breaking” the template by adjusting some content or changing a setting. This is useful when giving the template to someone who is less tech-savvy or unfamiliar with the brand. If you hand it over to a client who isn’t a great coding expert, or if you hire a freelancer for extra help, they can get to work right away with minimal effort.
Locking templates is also a great way to set and enforce branding standards. When creating a custom email template, you can choose which content modules and branding elements should be part of the branding experience. By including them, you make sure they find their place in every email of that style that is sent.
This prevents someone from accidentally forgetting a critical part of the email (like the client’s logo) or getting a little too adventurous with their creativity (like changing CTA colors to something outside of the brand).
Locking a template is easy with a Campaign Monitor agency account.
To lock sections in an existing email builder template, click the gear icon under the template thumbnail and select Edit.
While editing the template, click any page of a section to select it, then click Content Lock in the left sidebar, and then choose a lock setting.
When you select a lock setting, it is applied immediately. To edit your section and its settings again, select Unlock All.
You can also lock header or footer content by either clicking inside your template and then clicking Header Content Lock or Footer Content Lock in the left sidebar. When you’re done, click Preview, then click Finish and Save Template.
For more information on locking template sections, see here Comprehensive Guide to Email Builder Templates.
Brand standards are a big part of effective marketing, also (perhaps especially) when it comes to email. Strong, consistent branding in the inbox and across channels improves the customer experience and increases overall marketing performance, but doesn’t require a lot of effort to get significant results again.
Agencies can help clients create and enforce brand standards by creating and using custom email templates that are tailored to each account. Tools like an intuitive template builder and template locking features make it easy to create branding templates and align them with branding guidelines.
Bring the power of branding to your customers and become indispensable to their business. Learn how a Campaign Monitor agency account can help your agency grow.