I think it’s completely awesome what people have to been able to create within the constraints of HTML email marketing.
But, I’m also on the fence about it, especially when I see an email like this one from Big Sky.
Because what Big Sky has done is simply this: they’ve played to email’s strengths.
A website is extremely interactive and can take a credit card. It’s good at getting people to convert.
But a website isn’t very portable which means it can’t simply go to where the people are and get their attention.
An email is really good at going to where people are and getting their attention. It may be the best medium at doing so. It’s really good at getting clicks.
But an email isn’t very interactive and can’t take a credit card. It’s not so great at converting.
Combine vs Separate
I started this post by talking about the talented people trying to make email better at what websites are already good at so you don’t have to move them from the inbox to somewhere else to do those things, they can do them right there. It’s a noble cause and, again, some of the stuff they’re doing is completely awesome.
But what I like about Big Sky’s email is that they said:
“Look, right now our website is great at converting people, our email is good at getting their attention. So let’s let email do what it’s best at (clicking) and let our website do what it’s best at (converting).”
The result is a clean, simple template with a highly focused message and a single CTA.
In other words, something that’s designed to be as effective as possible at taking people from their inboxes to a website where they can actually book.
Are there times when a highly-interactive email is a huge opportunity? Absolutely.
But given most resources, most constraints, and most goals, I really like the idea of spending more time on the message and distribution and less time on trying to put that entire experience in an email.
Like Big Sky did.
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