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Are Your Creative Assets Helping or Hurting You?

I have a confession to make…

I have a hoarding problem.

Okay, okay, before you judge, let me explain. It’s not what you think!

If you knew me personally, you’d likely know I’m a huge learner. I love learning #allthethings about, well, virtually anything! I’m an information collector, an input gatherer, a reader, a “let me store that piece of knowledge in my brain for someday” type of person. Alright, if I’m being honest…I am a content hoard.

It’s almost embarrassing the amount of content I’ve downloaded and consumed in the last decade. I’ve seen the good, the bad, and the ugly (and sometimes, the really, really ugly). So, what makes one piece of content better than another? Let’s dive in and take a look at some of the key elements that make or break your creative assets.

Beautiful Design

Let’s face it…no one wants to look at ugly or outdated content. I’ll hit that delete button on my email so fast, it’ll give you whiplash! Here are some of my design tips for your creative assets*:

  • Less is more: Don’t pack your asset so full of text without breaking it up with visuals/graphics, whitespace, call out quotes…basically anything that makes it easier to read and consume. It doesn’t have to be super fancy. In fact, some of the best emails I’ve read are short, to-the-point, and are simple, text-based emails.
  • Add whitespace: It’ll make your content easy to scan and read; very pleasing to the eye. Pay attention to your leading, kerning, and tracking so that it’s not too tight.
  • Follow your brand guidelines: Make sure all assets follow your brand guidelines when it comes to typography, colors, logo placement/usage, brand voice, etc. This will ensure your assets are recognizable. Also, ensure you use web-safe fonts where applicable (yes, “pretty” fonts are fun, but they aren’t meant for email or web pages) and colors that are pleasing to the eye and easy to read. Get rid of the overused stock photography and get some custom images created for use in your creative assets.
  • Make it responsive: This means email and landing pages, folks! Make your digital assets convenient for the mobile user. Period. And, if you haven’t started using Email 2.0 and Guided Landing Pages in Marketo, you’re missing out! I just love seeing our creative team build mega templates for our clients…so easy to use! Get a ton of uses out of one template build…now that’s my cup of tea!
  • Keep your CTA in mind: All of your creative assets should have some sort of call-to-action (CTA) as a next step. Consider your CTA as you design your creative asset so that it’s prominent and enticing in order to increase conversions.

Interesting Copy

  • Creative copy: Invest in good copywriting resources. Writing compelling copy isn’t everyone’s strong suit. Be sure you have a good copywriter on your team or hire out if needed.
  • Stand out: Add a surprise or something “small” that makes a big impact. For example, I recently signed up for Chubbie‘s email list based on my coworker’s recommendation (they sell shorts). He told me that they had some pretty amazing content, and he was right! Even the alt text on the top two banners/photos in the email displayed a pretty creative text line which prompted me to quickly download the pictures in the email to read the entire thing. The alt text read “download picture to chillax to the max”. Umm, yes please! Their email message was all about relaxing on the weekend in a pair of their shorts. Seriously, it was so good.
  • Make it relevant & timely: This seems like a no-brainer, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been “nurtured” content that really isn’t that relevant to what I’m interested in. Track behaviors and adjust your email nurturing and other marketing campaigns accordingly. If you have buyer personas built out and can relate your marketing campaigns and creative assets towards a segment of people (or persona), even better!

Engaging User Experience (UX)

  • Make it interactive: I just love digital, interactive content! If you haven’t stepped into the world of interactive content yet, you’re missing out! Quizzes, assessments, interactive videos, polls, interactive infographics, contests, and calculators are some of the interactive content types that one of our partners, SnapApp, offers. They definitely provide a unique, interactive user experience and are proven to improve user experience and conversion. SnapApp reports that, on average, click rates on interactive calls-to-action exceed 35%, with more than 80% completion rates on SnapApp interactive content once a user starts the engagement. And, another benefit to you, is that you’re able to capture meaningful data from your prospects as they engage in your content! Take a look at sample some interactive content here and here to get started.

There you have it! If you’re not really sure where to start, but you know your creative assets could use a refresh (or complete overhaul), let us know! Our Creative Health Check is a perfect place to start to get a feel for what’s working, what’s not, and get our recommendations to improve to creative assets and content game!

*Creative assets, in the context of this post, mean all of your content: Emails, Landing pages, Collateral, White Papers, Data sheets, Website, eBooks, Infographics, Interactive content, etc.

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