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As a follow up to my blog on Creative ways to use mobile in your email marketing campaigns, I wanted to focus on the opportunities which now exist to use CSS in mobile emails.

CSS is generally viewed as bad for email, and on the whole it needs to be used carefully however if you are smart with it you can get some great results.

As a follow up to my last blog on Creative ways to use mobile in your email marketing campaigns, I wanted to focus on the opportunities which now exist to use CSS in mobile.

CSS is generally viewed as bad for email, and on the whole it needs to be used carefully however if you are smart with it you can get some great results.

1. Progressive disclosure

One of the things we need to do is target people at the right time of the day/when they are on the right device with content which is appropriate, the challenge with this is that people don’t always check their emails when you want them to.

So, for example, you may have crafted an excellent email meant for leisurely evening reading but perhaps they were out that evening and only check on the way to work the next day. You’ve missed the opportunity. 

So a great way around this is to use what’s called progressive disclosure, there is a great blog on how to do this here. Essentially it uses CSS (not the kind that email clients are allergic to) to enable you to show a snappy version initially but with more detail if the recipient wants to like this:

2. The evolution of buttons

A while back, bullet-proof buttons were the talk of the town, and if you aren’t using them already it’s well worth reading this blog on how to do them, they significantly improve user experience and of course in turn results.

With the rising prevelance of the Apple email clients it’s worth investing in techniques that currently only work on deivices running Apple OS, for evidence of this check the latest infographic from Litmus showing 30% of the email client marketing being owned by Apple.

So what’s evolved? As detailed in this blog by Pure360, you can create calls to action which are animated which will display even with images blocked!

The key to these technologies is to be an early adopter, just like with the first film ever made, the impact was pretty significant, the first time someone gets an email with this in it they will engage more, and less so from then on.

Ahh, but what if they aren’t using an Apple email client?  Well that’s easy, the backup image without the animation appears:

Which is still a significant step forward from a text based call to action and significantly better than an image based one. So, CSS is not all bad and if used correctly gives you a significant advantage.  

Use it before everyone else does!

Marc Munier

Published 19 July, 2012 by Marc Munier

Marc Munier is commercial director at Pure360, and a contributor to Econsultancy. You can hook up with him on LinkedIn and follow him on Twitter.

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