Jan 15, 2008

A way to safely send image-heavy HTML emails?

We’re always preaching that you should never send an image-only or very image-heavy HTML email. It’s #3 on our top email marketing mistakes we see people make.

But there are always going to be exceptions. You will inevitably come up with an email campaign that’s very image heavy. Perhaps it’s for a big splashy product promotion. Or a big e-coupon. Or some postcard. Whatever.

Mark Brownlow recently posted an interesting theory on how you can increase your chances of that email getting opened, and we wondered if it was possible for our customers to (easily) do this sort of thing in MailChimp…

A quote from Brownlow’s article:

So here’s the theory…

Do you need to design your email for image blocking when sending to someone who has opened your emails in the past? No, because they’ve already demonstrated that they have images enabled.

Anybody wanting to try image-rich emails safely could simply pull out a list of "people who previously opened at least one email from us" and send this group the image-rich mail.

Hmm. Is it possible in MailChimp to send "only to people on your list that opened a previous campaign"?

You betcha. Just create a segment of your list like this (click to zoom in):

Previously Opened Segment

This is a segment of people who have opened any campaign that I’ve sent in the past. The assumption is that they at least use an email program that handles images. And maybe they’re interested enough in my content that they’re actually more likely to open and enable images. Yeah, there are all kinds of catches here, but it’s worth a shot. Plus, we know you’re going to send an image-heavy campaign anyway. Might as well not do it blindly. Segment that list!