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5 | Minute Read

An engaging email newsletter can excite your customers or employees and drive action.

A poorly constructed newsletter, on the other hand, will be ignored and possibly often lead people to permanently disengage or unsubscribe.

In this article, we’ll show you some of the best and worst examples of email newsletters.

We’ll show you how to avoid common pitfalls and take advantage of insights from marketing leaders across a range of industries as you start your staff newsletter or customer email campaign.

Email Newsletter Examples: 11 of the Best and Worst

Email Newsletter Best Practices

  1. Plan and design the best newsletters
  2. Use fonts and colours that complement each other
  3. Write content that your readers want to read
  4. 20 content ideas!
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1. Good: Reebok

A great colour scheme can do wonders for your newsletter. This Reebok email shows that you can go beyond one or two colours as long as your chosen scheme is simple and coherent.

Most importantly, Reebok’s newsletter sticks to a single colour for its calls to action (CTAs). That colour, white, stands out amongst the pastels of the images and the otherwise black text. They allow small amounts of paler white elsewhere in the email, but the vibrant CTAs still stand out.

Reebok email newsletter example

2. Bad: Amigo Month

When choosing colours and images for your newsletter, remember that simplicity is key. Some colour is engaging, but too much is an eye-sore. This Amigo Month newsletter shows what happens when you have too many colours in too little space.

The basic idea—a tree with flags— may have been reasonable. However, you need to remember your limited screen real estate. This is especially important as more and more users move to mobile devices.

amigo newsletter examples

3. Good: National Geographic

National Geographic is known for its stunning imagery, so the visual appeal of its newsletter comes as no surprise. They’ve gone for minimalistic headlines and messages that get directly to the point and are easily scannable. 

It’s clear that their primary CTA is “Take your pledge”. There are other CTAs peppered throughout their email, including article links and social links. However, those three words stand out as the only obvious button on the page and the only underlined (with the same colour as the button) text.

They may, however, have wanted to better reserve that yellow for the CTA. The yellow text and graphic above the button take some attention away from the most crucial element in the email.

national geographic newsletter examples

4. Bad: Wildlife Conservation Film Festival

Beautiful imagery is good, but your overall design needs to hold its own, too. The Wildlife Conservation Film Festival makes a few key errors in this example email newsletter.

The email is very text-heavy. That might be fine if the email was more scannable. The combination of unhelpful, poorly-differentiated headers and contrast issues between the text and background make it difficult to analyze a section without stopping to read at least some of the body text. 

The prominence of the images makes their non-uniformity immediately apparent. More consistent sizing and a simpler image colour scheme would have done a lot of good for this email.

While the CTA links themselves stand out reasonably well, their anchor texts do not convey action. For the video paragraph, simply using “Watch the trailer” as the link would have been far more effective. The “Support us” button is a perfect example of what they should have done throughout.

wildlife conservation newsletter examples

5. Good: Bon Appetit

Chrissy Teigen’s Bon Appetit newsletter shows that you can include full-text paragraphs without detracting from a visually appealing newsletter. Rather than scaring the user away, this paragraph gives readers a choice of whether or not to read it.

There are a few excellent strategies at play here. 

Instead of adding extra whitespace, the paragraph is all served at once. That can often overwhelm the reader, but here it brings the food pictures into focus. If the reader came for food images, they know they can just skip ahead. The headline also makes the content of the paragraph very clear.

Lastly, notice the uniform colour palette in this email. It can be easy to go overboard with vibrant colours in a food newsletter, but Teigen’s team has chosen colours that entice without distracting. They could have made the CTAs stand out better, but otherwise, this is a great example of an email newsletter.

bon appetite newsletter examples

6. Bad: Foodtown

You want to bring the best practices from other marketing channels to email, but you shouldn’t forego email marketing best practices in the process.

This Foodtown newsletter will immediately make readers think of a newspaper insert, and that’s not what they want to see in their inbox.

Email newsletters are intended to guide the reader down the page. There is no obvious flow to this email.

There are also no clear CTAs, and there is just too much information in too little space.

Surprisingly, though, Foodtown is the first example so far to feature a key advantage of automated email marketing platforms: personalisation.

Patrika is going to immediately recognize their name when they open that email, and it’s going to offer a personal connection that was impossible in the days of newspapers.

foodtown newsletter examples

7. Good: General Assembly

The examples so far have been designed for customers or the general public. General Assembly’s email newsletter demonstrates a style that works equally well for customers or an employee newsletter.

The clear headlines make it easy for readers to browse past sections they don’t care about. 

Notice that the copy is relatively concise yet contains enough information to entice the reader to click through. They’ve limited the lengthier copy to the first few blocks, choosing to only include the basic date and time information for the remaining events.

The graphics are appealing without being distracting. A python programmer or product manager will immediately be drawn to certain images, and more generic topics simply use black-and-white figures. 

Their CTAs stand out everywhere. When you see red, you are ready to click. The only exceptions are the social and contact links at the bottom.

The duller colours used in those cases are perfect if General Assembly would rather people check out their events instead of following their Facebook page.

General Assembly Newsletter Examples

8. Bad: Macy’s

You need to think about the experience for all of your readers. Here’s an example from Macy’s that might work fine on a large desktop, but it’s a nightmare on mobile. The CTA buttons are far too close together for a tiny screen.

In general, it’s best to avoid an excessive number of CTAs in a single email, and they definitely shouldn’t all be clumped together like this.

Also, notice the use of colour in this email. Red was a great choice for the CTAs, but the same shade of red is also used for the headline prices.

Headlines should be catchy, but they shouldn’t be confused for CTAs.

macy's newsletter examples

9. Good: Moz

You don’t always need images or other multimedia to keep the reader engaged. In this example newsletter, Moz takes what would be a text-heavy article and turns it into a comfortably-spaced listicle.

The simple design of their email makes it very easy to scan, and the information density is excellent. This is an ideal way to communicate with customers, and it works equally well as an example for internal communication best practices.

moz newsletter examples

10. Bad: MoveOn

MoveOn provides a lot of context in this email newsletter, but it’s too much text for the typical email newsletter reader.

When the average person opens their email, they are only planning on spending a few minutes on the process. Newsletters should be short and scannable or the reader will just, well, move on.

A better alternative would have been a short teaser with a CTA link to a blog post. If they needed all this text to be in the newsletter, formatting or images could have been used to break things up.

The use of bold text was a good start, but lists or sections with subheaders would have been much better.

move on newsletter examples

11. Good: Elite Financial

Our last example shows how companies can take advantage of formatting, simple imagery, and concise copy to create a highly impactful email. This one is worth adding to your list of company newsletter templates.

The header they use conveys the importance of the content, increasing the likelihood that employees will thoroughly read the material.

That, combined with the easily memorable bullet points and the complimentary icons is ideal for an information-rich newsletter.

elite newsletter examples

Use Email Marketing To Create Your Next Company Newsletter

Is your company looking to up their newsletter game and create a newsletter people actually want to read? 

Whether it is an internal or external company newsletter, Swift Digital has all the tools you need to make sure your company newsletter doesn’t end up in the junk, deleted or thrown to the side. 

Swift Digital’s newsletter email builder has interactive tools including polls, emojis, videos, surveys automation and means you can create better company newsletters that you know will get read!

Swift Digital can share more resources and best practices relating to your industry and how they successfully send internal and external company newsletters.

To find out how your business can get the best out of Swift Digital’s platform, contact our team.

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