What to Include in Your Email Branding Guide

By showcasing your brand identity in your email campaigns, you can boost brand recognition and develop a more loyal customer base. Improve your email branding by following these tips.

Email marketing helps you connect with your customers and nurture leads. Like any other digital marketing strategy, email marketing is about attracting customers and growing your business online. 

By branding your email content, you can boost brand recognition, enhance your authority, increase sales, and get a better return on your investment. 

5 Elements to Include in Your Email Branding Guide

  1. Establish a color scheme
  2. Maintain a consistent style of layout
  3. Create a brand voice
  4. Add visuals 
  5. Write engaging subject lines 

1. Establish a Color Scheme 

Colors are an important aspect of your business’s visual identity and can be used to promote brand familiarity.

By including colors in your emails, you can increase brand association and encourage readers to engage with your content. 

Additionally, colors can help businesses increase sales. In a recent survey, we discovered that certain colors — specifically primary colors such as blue — can increase sales.   

However, the colors you choose for your email design should depend on your brand, style guide, and message you’re trying to convey. Green, for example, is often associated with the environment and can be a great choice for sustainable companies looking to highlight their business practices. 

Still, there’s no reason to overthink it. Use the colors or shades of certain colors you’ve chosen for your other branding materials such as your logo or web design. 

MyEyeDr., an eye health and optometry service provider uses their brand color — light blue — to make their content stand out. 

Color in Emails Example

Here, the lighter blue is used as a background color, but they’ve chosen a darker blue to highlight their call-to-action and emphasize their content. Additionally, the two colors complement each other well, so it’s aesthetically pleasing.

2. Maintain a Consistent Style or Layout 

Branding is all about consistency – whether that’s in color choice, typography, logos, or layouts. This contributes to brand recognition and awareness. 

By outlining your style and creating templates, you can ensure that your emails have a consistent look and feel without sacrificing creativity. This also makes it easier to compose new emails and send them using automation tools. 

Create a set of rules and stick to them. For example, you may choose to use one feature image with text in your emails, but the picture and text would change for every email you send. 

Or maybe your emails have your logo up top with some text and a call to action at the end. Think about what makes sense for your email content. 

Joss & Main, a high-end furniture company, uses the same layout and color scheme for all of its email content. Under their typographic logo, they include a discount deal with a “shop now” call to action button. 

Consistent Email Design Example

Under that, they use a grid format that allows users to visit certain pages. This way, they can find exactly what they’re looking for by engaging with the email. 

3. Create a Consistent Voice for Copy 

Brand voice is how your communication materials convey your business’s personality, and it’s a big part of how you brand your business.

The words you choose, sentence structure, grammar, and tone all impact your brand voice. How you communicate your brand must align with your business objective.  

For example, a bank’s voice should be professional and clear, but a retail company can be a little more upbeat and fun. 

Think about your customers and what they expect to experience by purchasing your products or services. 

For example, Harley-Davidson, the motorcycle manufacturer, has a rough and rugged brand voice. Their copy includes phrases such as “resistance is futile” and “grab life by the bars” to portray a rebellious, outlaw personality. 

Voice Example
Source: ebaqdesign 

For people who want to buy a motorcycle, this is exactly what they’re looking for. They want a brand that is bold and aggressive, and Harley-Davidson delivers. As a result, they’re one of the most recognizable motorcycle brands in the world. 

4. Add Visuals 

Like newspapers, blogs, or any other type of content, visuals are an important part of your email marketing and branding strategy. This can include pictures, logos, infographics, and more. 

They divide up content, making it easier to read and more engaging. Because people process visual information faster than text, the images you include in your emails can help readers understand your content even if they’re skimming. 

Additionally, they can be used to promote new products or emphasize your brand’s tone or style. 

Orvis, a high-quality outdoor sports brand, uses their email campaigns to showcase products and how they’re used. 

Unlike other sports brands, Orvis was originally a fly-fishing and wingshooting brand, and they highlight that history in their emails with images of people actively fly fishing, hiking, or even hunting. 

Visuals Example

They partner these images with specific call-to-actions that highlight the products being used in the images. The email above is aimed at dog owners and hikers who are likely to purchase high-end collars and harnesses specifically for outdoor use. 

While pictures can be an effective tool for branding, digital marketers have to be smart about how they use images in their email campaigns. 

While one study confirmed that email campaigns with images have a higher click-through rate (CTR) than those without, another showed that image-only emails are often marked as spam or are unreadable if images don’t display. 

As a result, Mailchimp recommends that at least 20% of your email should still be text. Before sending, be sure to look at a preview of your email designs to make sure they’re formatted properly. 

5. Creative Subject Lines

Your subject lines are the first thing your readers see, so they can determine whether a potential customer will open your email or immediately delete it from their inbox.  

Companies should use subject lines to pique their audience’s interest and build their brand authority even more. 

Some tips for writing catchy subject lines include: 

  • Highlighting deals
  • Adding personalization 
  • Being descriptive
  • Using emojis (when appropriate) 

By implementing some of these strategies, you can boost your open rate and leave a lasting impression for your brand. 

Petco, the pet store chain, does a great job of portraying their pet-loving brand by using emojis and unique text in their subject lines. On Valentine’s Day, they sent an email with a subject line playing on the popular poem “Roses are red.” 

Subject Lines example

Instead, they added a heart emoji and wrote “Noses are wet, violets are blue…” Once readers opened the email, they could read he rest of the poem “20% off to say to your dog ‘I Love You.’”

Appealing to pet owners, this message helps Petco connect with their customers who want the best for their pets. 

Branding in Email Marketing Campaigns 

Growing brand recognition is a key component of any marketing campaign. By adding brand elements to your email marketing efforts, you can grow brand awareness and increase sales. Your email design should include brand colors that are appealing and stand out. At the same time, you should create a consistent style for all your emails. To do this and streamline your workflow, create templates. In addition, your content should reflect your brand voice and include visuals that showcase your brand values and increase engagement. 

Finally, your subject lines should grab your readers’ attention and reflect your brand voice. 

With all of these elements, your email branding should be in the best shape for your customers. If you're not sure where to get started, check out our list of experienced email marketing providers. 

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