Email: Just write about it!

The other day, I came across a timely post on Smashing Magazine, titled ‘Publish What You Learn’. Timely, because I was amidst writing our recent post on removing spacing from tables in Outlook, knowing that this newly-discovered tip would be sure to help other email designers. While Smashing’s post was focused on the benefits of sharing your web development know-how, I felt that the ‘publish what you learn’ mantra was even more relevant to email design, where the quirks are many, but often, information on email rendering issues is very thin on the ground.

Previously, I’ve encouraged customers to contribute to blogs, or better, start their own. In one case, the response was, ‘Oh, but no-one would read a blog by little old me’, which in my impression was shrugging off a good opportunity. In reality:

  • There are only a handful of email design blogs out there, such as Email Design Review, StyleCampaign, Email Fail and of course, this one. It’s by no means an over-saturated field.
  • There aren’t that many email marketing ‘celebrities’, either. This is a field where you can produce great work and stand out.
  • Blog posts on email design tend to get a lot of attention. In the last year, a single post on background images in email received over 62k hits from Google alone! That doesn’t count all the reposting and tweeting that often occurs.

The bottom line is, if you’re designing for email and you come across a good piece of advice or a fix to some Outlook quirk, just publish it. Sharing what you know will not only help countless other people, but it could really lift your profile, too.

Posted by Ros Hodgekiss

3 Comments

  • Elliot Ross
    6th April

    Thanks for the link Ros - Completely agree, email is such a niche thing now, especially for coding, that sharing bugs and fixes really helps the community. x0aIf anyone does fancy writing stuff and doesn’t want to do their own blog, we’re happy to have guest posts on Email Design Review!

  • Justin Amphlett
    7th April

    I’ve come to email design and code from a web background, and it is a shame to see email treated as the ugly stepchild. Hindered by poor render engines and a lack of technological progression - it is a pretty unfashionable area and understandable why it doesn’t attract much support from the wider web community. But there are unique challenges here and plenty of scope for creative thinking. Especially with the rising need for media-query driven, flexible designs.x0ax0aHopefully this blog post will stir up some action! I’m feeling pretty guilty myself for not doing more.

  • Nicole Merlin
    9th May

    Thanks Ros. You’ve inspired my to put all my bits and pieces into a blog instead of just a private repository for my own reference! (http://emailwizardry.tumblr.com/)

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