In order to give you a better understanding of my role as a graphic designer in corporate literature, I thought that I would showcase a ‘Before & After’ e-mail newsletter. As you know I help companies to communicate to existing and potential customers; staff; and stakeholders by translating their written communications in a visually engaging and professional way whether it be newsletters, brochures, annual reviews… etc.
Good vs Bad Design
A good e-newsletter design tends to go unnoticed – at least on a conscious level. You expect a professional person or company to have a professional design, and when it plays out that way – like a good waiter at a restaurant – you don’t usually take note or remember.
Poor or amateurish design, on the other hand, can be jarring and reflect badly on a company – especially if you expect otherwise, based on a nicely done website, a face-to-face meeting with a company representative, or some other experience with that company.
While I strongly believe good content is what carries the day, if your e-newsletter – or any other company literature for that matter – looks homemade or unprofessional, it detracts from your overall brand. In fact, it can be so distracting that it prevents readers from hearing your message!
Warren’s current health and wellness e-Newsletter
Some basic criteria an e-Newsletter needs to meet in order to set you up as an expert in your field and help you to build relationships with potential and existing clients:
- Headlines that grab interest. Emotional.
- Engaging stories or articles that draw people into the conversation.
- Clear, high-quality photos that people can relate to.
- Strong branding that enhances the company’s reputation: masthead; logo; colour; and good design
- Connection points: items that encourage engagement and feedback.
So, what does Warren want to leave in prospects minds?
Does his e-Newsletter achieve this and meet the basic criteria?
This is where my role as a graphic designer comes in!
I have built a new design framework for Warren’s e-Newsletter – one that is professional and recognisable – that would help him to achieve the goals he has for his e-Newsletter.
Let’s readdress the basic criteria as I take you through the framework:
1. Headlines: Immediately grab your interest; they are bold and easy to read.
2. Stories or articles: Warren needs to bear in mind that this is his opportunity to share his point of view and his personality in an engaging way, making him not only knowledgeable, but likeable – which will ultimately build relationship and trust. I have given Warren space to talk about various aspects of nutrition, health and wellness by breaking the newsletter up into sections:
- Lead article that also uses sub-headings for ease of reading.
- Eat Well. Live Well. A section to include a healthy recipe. Something practical for people to use.
- Motivators: How to step it up. Exercise section. Practical application of healthy principles.
- Simple, healthy, delicious: Meal planning made easy. A plug for Herbalife products that isn’t “in your face”.
- Client testimonial. Short, external validation from local clients.
- You will also see that I have used quotes to help “pull people in” to the articles.
3. Good quality photos that people can relate to and that also highlight the ideal – slender, fit, healthy – whether young or old. Since Howick’s demographic is an older generation, Warren could use photos that focus more on them.
4. Branding: A Masthead that immediately shows what the newsletter is all about. Include a tagline. Incorporate corporate Herbalife colours that shout out health, organic, sustainable and enhances the company reputation and image. Company logo.
5. Connection Points: Must not only include contact details like website and email address and telephone numbers; but items that will encourage people to engage with you:
- Quick poll
- Ask a question
- Send to a friend
- Subscribe to e-Newsletter / Unsubscribe
- Connect with Warren on LinkedIn; Facebook and Twitter
- Also included a short “bio” on Warren. Friendly and engaging, not a bunch of facts!
Talk less about what you do, and more about what you believe, and you’ll make it easier for prospects to hear you, understand you, remember you, and (ta-da!) hire you.