Choosing the Right Length for Your E-Mail Marketing Messages

Generally shorter e-mail marketing messages are more effective than long ones. A customer who wants to get lengthy e-mail messages is the exception rather than the rule. As a general rule, the longer the content, the less frequently your audience will tolerate getting your e-mails.

Given those basics, know that there’s no such thing as the perfect e-mail message length that works best for everyone and every format. Frequency and length depend on your audience and the value of your content.

Until you become familiar enough with your audience members to know how much content they will tolerate in each e-mail, adopt a less-is-more mentality.

Although your audience will ultimately tell you when your messages are too long by unsubscribing or opening your e-mails less frequently, you can reduce the size of your individual e-mails and correctly match your frequency with your length by following a few guidelines:

  • Break your content into parts and send a series of e-mails. If you have a lot of information to share, several shorter e-mails are generally better tolerated than one very long e-mail. Be sure to include links to all your content so interested readers don’t feel like they’re being deprived.

  • Use images to describe the value of your products or services. Images can replace long passages of text. That “a picture is worth a thousand words” thing still holds true. Visuals are more engaging than text and give your message more punch for the length.

    Using too many images or using large image files can make your e-mail download more slowly on mobile devices, and attaching images to your e-mails directly degrades your deliverability.

  • Use white space and design elements. Make your e-mails easy to scan with an attractive and eye-directing layout so that consumers can quickly find the information they value.

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