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Email Design: Set Up Your Team for Success

Samantha Orr

In our posts on managing a team of email marketers, we’ve discussed how crucial it is to plan out your email design well in advance of sending your first newsletter.

Your marketing emails should be well-thought out and incorporate your brand styles. You can help your team adhere to brand styles by providing custom templates from the start along with clear guidelines about how to use them. Here’s how to get started.


Define your brand

Every email starts with a solid foundation. Brand guidelines determine how you will present your organization to the world. Most organizations have a set of brand requirements that provide guidelines for the overall design. Brand guides include information like:

  • Logo: How can the logo be used? What version of the logo is used? What background colors are allowed? Should the logo always appear in the upper left corner?
  • Fonts: Font family, heading styles, links styles, etc
  • Icons: What icons meet the brand guidelines? Social icons, other icons?
  • Copy/Content: What is the tone of the organization?
  • Imagery: What types of images are allowed to help give a visual presence to your brand?
  • Color palette: What colors are your headlines, links, or header backgrounds?

It’s easy to start designing a great email for your organization once you have clear details for the brand. We highly recommend working with a designer on your team to create a cohesive set of guidelines. If you already have brand guides in place, great! You are well on your way to creating fantastic emails.

Your marketing emails should employ every essence of your brand.


Build an email template based on your brand

There’s a significant amount of effort put into creating brand guidelines. But once they are created, how can you ensure your email marketers stick to the brand?

We recommend creating template versions of the email designs you plan to use throughout the year. Templates take much of the guess work out of the design creating process and help the team focus more on the content that changes with each email.

Templates ensure that all of the main styles are set up and clear guidelines are present to help your team carry on with inserting specific content in the email. Your template should have all the major global styles set up such as paragraph, headline, link, buttons, max width of email and all padding/margin globally set in place. Any global adjustments for mobile display should also be thought through.

Beyond the core styles of the template you can also help your users by inserting placeholder content:

  • Use lorem ipsum text and note character limits for every text block.
  • Upload example images that contain the desired pixel dimensions.
  • Detail which text areas use a Headline 1 style (h1) and which ones use Headline 2 (h2), etc.

Once a template is built it will help your team not only be efficient in building each email, but also keep them designing within the guidelines.


Save your email template as a WordFly starter email

In WordFly you can create any email design into a custom starter email that functions as the ‘template’ for the team to use moving forward. Learn More.

Here’s an example of making a design as a “template” for your custom starter.

Once your custom starter email is created, you can find it in the Modern Editor starter email carousel. Select the one you want to use and then start working on your email.

Modern Editor - Custom Starter Carousel Modern Editor – Custom Starter Email Carousel


Learn more about Modern Editor

Are you new to using WordFly’s responsive email template builder? Take some time to review our articles and training video.