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Designing a High Performing Email
Designing a High Performing Email

Read our best practice tips for designing an email that will perform will and help you drive action.

Taylor Bradfield avatar
Written by Taylor Bradfield
Updated over a week ago

Each time you send out a marketing email, it's another chance to connect with your leads and continue to build trust, create value and ultimately, encouraging your leads to take action towards your desired outcome. There are several things to consider when designing your marketing emails to ensure they encourage actions from your leads. 

Set & Understand the goal of your email:

First things first, you need to set a goal for the email - what is it you're hoping to achieve as a result of sending this email? More sales? More signups for your newest offering? Awareness of your new refer and receive program? It's important to get clear on what the goal of your email is. 

When setting the goal for your email, remember to follow the SMART Goal setting method; 

  • Specific: What is it exactly you are trying to achieve with your email? 

  • Measurable: Will it be measurable? What metrics would you need to look at to determine the success of the goal 

  • Achievable: Remember, to be realistic when setting your goals, setting a goal of a 100% open rate is most likely not going to happen.

  • Relevant: Is the goal of the email relevant to the other goals of the business? Remember that email is usually 1 touchpoint of communication for your leads, so make sure that the email is relevant to the other content your leads may be receiving. 

  • Timely: When do you want to achieve the goal? Is it in a relevant and meaningful time frame? 

Once you've determined the goal for the email, you can get started on the design!

Design a great email: 

Once you know the goal of your email, you can begin designing the email to support the goal. When we talk about the design of the email, this also includes critical email components such as the subject line, preview texts, footer and who the email is actually sent from. 

We strongly suggest following the AIDA Model when designing your emails. The AIDA Model is an inverted triangle model that helps you funnel the attention in your email down towards the action. Following this design model will encourage action to be taken by the lead reading the email. 

Stage 1: Attention
You need to get your readers attention quickly; this starts with the subject line and the name of the sender. Ensure you pick contextual subject lines that spark interest quickly and signpost what the email is about. 

Stage 2: Interest
In a modern world, we have shorter attention spans, now that you have the attention of your readers, it's vital that you engage them also. Ensure you capture interest quickly in the email by using relevant content. 

Stage 3: Desire
Does the content of your email add value to the person reading it? You can only create desire if the reader sees value in what they are reading. Ensure your email is creating value to the reader and this will, when done properly, inspire stage 4 - action 

Stage 4: Action
Every email needs to have a clear Call to Action (CTA). Having a clear call to action will make it easy for the reader to understand which step is next. When creating a CTA, ensure that you use strong verb words and clear language so it's easy for the reader to understand what is next. 

 When you follow the AIDA model, you should be able to lay a triangle over the email and clearly see what the desired action of the email is. 


The last key to designing a high performing email is to use personalization. Personalization will allow you to further engage with your readers and also add the human element to the email to send out. When sending your email look to use your reader's first names, information relevant to their goals/desired outcomes, merge tags can be a great way to personalize for your readers. Remember that personalization isn't just about using merge tags for common fields, but also relates to personalizing the content to match the stage in the buyer's journey the reader is at. Delivering personalized content at the right time, to the right person increases your chance of successful action taking place.

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