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Effective Design Strategies for Successful B2B Email Marketing

Fulfill Marketing Goals with Creative, Effective Email Campaigns

Email marketing is an essential part of any digital marketing strategy. B2B email marketing campaigns keep your existing clients engaged and play a vital role in nurturing your leads, guiding them through the sales funnel, and converting them into prospects.

Email marketing software services offer a variety of templates on which to base your newsletter designs. While these templates provide the infrastructure for your content, utilizing your creative team and customizing your email marketing designs can keep your efforts from falling flat with your target audience. After all, your emails are more than just copy. Visuals matter.

Understand the goal of your email and which segment of your audience you want to reach. Then, gather your building blocks—your headlines, text, images, videos, and calls to action—and consider the following design principles for successful email marketing.

1. Make emails easily scannable

Headlines matter! The headline will be the first aspect your readers see when they open your email. If it doesn’t catch their attention, it doesn’t matter how perfect the body copy is; many readers won’t scroll down to read it. Think of headlines as serving two main functions for your audience—enticing people to read more and conveying the message of your email to readers who only have the time or inclination to read the bolded highlights.

Similar to the principles of subject-line writing, headline-writing best practices include writing in an active voice to create a sense of urgency. Adding second-person pronouns (you, your) to your headlines will help you speak and connect directly to your audience, letting them know that the copy that follows the headline addresses their needs.

The email has done its job if you have a reader who only digests your headlines and calls to action.

Place calls to action in a variety of spots within your email. You may even want to design one for the top and one for the bottom of your email with different placement and design but the same message and ultimate landing page.

2. Enhance readability for engaging emails

Email designs that increase copy readability will make it easier for your audience to quickly scan your email for keywords or phrases that are valuable to them. The more value they can quickly identify in the email, the more likely they will continue reading and clicking through the provided links. Consider bolding those important words to clarify your value and encourage your audience to continue reading.

Paying attention to font sizes, styles, and colors. People often read your emails on a small screen, so you want to ensure that your font size is readable but not so large that it causes excessive scrolling. Stay consistent with the font style (or styles) you use for your brands. Doing so creates a consistent flow between your emails and your website, creating a cohesive branding experience. While colors can help your copy jump off the page, bright colors can be difficult to read comfortably—especially on a small screen—and can discourage your audience from reading your email.

3. Use videos and GIFs wisely

You may want to reconsider embedding long-playing videos (anything over 30 seconds) into an email. The larger the file size, the more likely it is to cause slow loading times for your readers. The slower the loading time, the easier for your reader to abandon your email.

If you have a video you are excited to share with your audience but don’t want to worry about a slow load; the best practice is to place a still image of the video into the body of your email with a little triangular play button in the middle. Using the still-image-with-a-play-button technique means linking your audience out of your email to view the video, a golden opportunity to drive traffic to your website or dedicated landing page. Creating and linking a specific landing page that best fits the content of the video can offer further content and service insights and calls to action.

Choose your video still image that you use carefully, however. This image is another way to entice your readers, so consider using close-ups of expressive faces to build an emotional connection. Remember that the image does not have to be taken directly from the video. Use the best image in your arsenal that tells the story of the video and creates a valuable connection.

On the other hand, GIFs are a way to tell a story in video format with minimal impact on email loading times and without the need to link your readers to a web page.
GIFs are short looping videos or moving images. They are fun, add spice to an email, and may help you showcase your product or image better than a static image. To get started, familiarize yourself with free online GIF creators like and

4. Optimize for mobile viewing

Always prioritize mobile responsiveness in your emails. Most email software services offer desktop and mobile previews to confirm your email’s presentation. This step is critical as many recipients use mobile devices. If your email isn’t mobile-friendly, it may display poorly, leading to a subpar user experience.

Reviewing and optimizing your email for mobile ensures it looks great on all devices, engaging your audience and enhancing the effectiveness of your email campaigns. This attention to detail can boost engagement, click-through rates, and overall campaign success.

5. Consider these additional layout tips

There is plenty to consider when enhancing your email layout, but give special thought to these aspects.


Using divider lines is important if you cover multiple subjects in one email. A little black or gray line divider goes a long way to give readers a visual cue of separation between subjects.


Be mindful of the amount of text you place in an email compared to the amount of visual elements. A text-heavy email will turn some readers away, and a visual email with little text may leave readers without the context to understand your message.

Aim for a balance between the two while also considering white space. Negative space conveys simplicity and emboldens the concrete elements in the email.


Consider your background color carefully. Align it with your brand while playing with bold colors for special sends. You’ll also have the opportunity to color your text. Make sure your text color and background color play nicely with each other.

Email marketing remains an effective way to engage your business’ audience. Design your emails with these ideas in mind to increase your open rates and conversions.

Looking for more insight on designing and executing your email campaigns? Schedule a consultation with Breezy Hill Marketing today.

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Shannon Briden

Account Manager
Shannon brings her MBA education and design background to find creative, innovative solutions to everyday marketing problems.

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