Salesforce Trailhead

Are you ready to apply the best email practices to your Salesforce ecosystem?

In this unit from Salesforce Trailhead, we learn how to Craft Effective Marketing Emails.

This unit covers how to…

  • Craft effective subject lines
  • Create effective preheaders
  • Make emails relevant using personalized, dynamic content
  • and Craft effective calls-to-action (CTAs)

To create compelling emails, Salesforce encourages you to start with your subject line and go from there…


When it comes to subject lines, you want something that a subscriber will read. You want something that will grab their attention and not get lost in their inboxes amid a slew of other newsletter updates!

Woman working on a laptop

How do you do this?

Salesforce shares these tips to create the most effective subject line:

  • Keep them short and sweet
  • Use your brand to your advantage
  • Test, test, and test again!
  • A/B test

A/B testing offers a lot of potential for marketers and subscribers alike. You give subscribers a chance to absorb information in new ways, and get to see what they respond to best, whether you test:

  • Images
  • Email body text length
  • Subject lines
  • Front-loading keywords
  • Styles
  • Personalization
  • Calls-to-action
  • Video
  • Attachments
  • Etc.

You may discover that different audience segments respond to tests differently. This will help you continue to personalize per segment and craft the most effective emails for every individual within your marketing automation system.


We don’t want to take away from your own Salesforce Trailhead learning experience, so we encourage you to get all of the details on these best practice tips when you complete the Salesforce Trailhead Unit yourself!


Creative woman working

Once you lock down the best subject line, you can move on to preheaders. What are preheaders? Preheaders are the text that follows the subject line in an email preview. Many marketers miss the ball on this, but it’s important you don’t skip it!

Salesforce says preheaders are just as important as subject lines.

Limit your preheaders to 100 characters. Keep it short and sweet. Consider how subscribers will view the email on a mobile device versus a desktop computer.

Many leading marketing automation systems today allow you to preview a mobile version of your emails on a web interface to ensure they are the best quality.


Next, it’s time to consider personalization!

Personalization is very important when it comes to email marketing. The difference between sending a customer an email saying, “Happy Birthday, Valued Shopper!” versus “Happy Birthday, (First Name)! We hope you’re enjoying your day in (City, State)!”

The difference between these two emails is huge. Attention to detail and mindfulness of the individual sets you apart in today’s marketplace. If your marketing automation system has the capability to personalize, and it should, then you should take full advantage of this.

However, be sure that your data is clean and consistent. If your data is entered improperly, you may suffer misspellings or miscommunications. Use blocks designed by your marketing automation system to prevent yourselves from sending failed coding efforts, as well.

For example, if you type “Dear %%First Name%%,” instead of entering a block of code pre-designed by your system, you may end up sending a mass email to your customers that say “Dear %%First%,” instead of their actual first names, for example. It happens to the best of us, but is preventable!

Alternatively, you may misspell the name of a customer if a salesperson or marketer originally entered it wrong. Personalization works best when data is up-kept.


Woman with hiking poles on forest path

Next, we move on to Dynamic Content.

When you have an abundance of data linked to your marketing automation system, you gain insights into customer behavior, preferences, and even hobbies. Dynamic content can help you tailor your email marketing to their unique profiles and interests.

For example, if you are a retailer who sells athletic apparel and a subscriber’s favorite activity is hiking, you may send them updates when you get new hiking boots in stock or they go on sale.


Calls-to-action (CTAs) are our last consideration to craft the most effective emails.

Calls-to-action should encourage your subscribers to take the next step with you, whether you want them to enter a contest, sign up for a webinar you’re hosting, take advantage of a limited-time deal, or something else.

Don’t forget your call-to-action! 

A great call-to-action will:

  • Establish a sense of urgency with the subscriber
  • Be brief (short and sweet)
  • Be action-oriented (use a verb)
  • Be clear and predictable (don’t mislead – be direct)
  • Be limited and visible (don’t give subscribers too much time to take advantage of an offer – this ties closely with the first consideration)

Are you ready to learn about what it takes to have an effective email marketing strategy?

Craft your own when you begin this Salesforce Trailhead module.

Reach out to our Marketing Consultants for help with crafting your email marketing strategy, or our Salesforce Consultants to get the help you need navigating the system and its vast capabilities.

We look forward to helping you reach your email marketing goals!


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