Increase Your Email’s Impact! Part 4: Footer

Your footer. It’s easily the most neglected portion of your message. It is usually just where all the “boring” parts of your message go - the legal jargon, your contact info, and so on. But if your reader gets down that far, it means that they’ve read your entire message. So, congratulations. Though it might seem unlikely, your email footer can easily be ruined (just like the title, header, and any other section of an email).


What sets professional e-marketers apart from thieves and spammers is the complete transparency of their offer and contact details that allow your reader to identify the company you work for. So, a footer is pretty important.


There’s a question you should be asking yourself…


What goes in the footer?

Let’s start with what each law-abiding marketer should place in the footer of a commercial newsletter sent by e-mail.

Depending on your country’s laws and regulations, you will probably have to place the company’s name and address, tax registration number, etc. Western marketers take this information for granted, that yes, you do indeed need to put your real address and company information where people can actually find it.


A lot of the spammers don’t work that way. Let’s be grateful that we can be so transparent with our audience. It builds a massive amount of trust when you give someone a real name, an honest e-mail address, and accurate contact info.


Your unsubscribe link is legally needed

Probably the least popular item for all of us marketers is the fact that we must include an unsubscribe link in our footer.


It’s really surprising that there are some who will complicate the unsubscribe process for their readers as much as they can. The subscribers may even have to click through several pages, log in to two or three websites, or send a request email before their address is removed from a list.


But let’s face it – by making your customer jump through hoops, you shoot yourself in the foot. Not only will this make the subscriber hopping mad, it may also cause them to mark your message as spam – or send your messages straight to the junk folder. This may seriously harm your reputation as a sender, leading to problems with deliverability.


Your lesson from all this? Subscribers know exactly when they want to cancel a subscription and there’s no place for vendor lock-in in email marketing.


Another word of caution

What’s more, if you think the footer is a bucket you can throw all the unwanted elements and small print into, and hope your reader won’t notice, check out these great footer examples for inspiration.


  • This background image is consistent in design with the rest of the HTML template. The footer is usually black or grey text on white background. But you can successfully enliven it with graphic elements, while keeping all the necessary info.



  • Add links to social media. Why not give the reader another opportunity to share the newsletter with others? Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn… the choice is yours.




  • Enhance the brand with a logo. If you have some free space left, you can try and make the subscribers’ life easier by placing links to the newsletter online, or by using a “Forward to a friend” button. This can increase your newsletter sign-ups too.



  • Making the footer a consistent element of the design makes navigation easier. If you like reading about web design trends, you’ll know the importance of a great footer design. Use the footer to wrap up the lower section of the newsletter and aid in better navigation.




  • Add links to previous issues of the newsletter. If you have a web archive of your newsletter issues, it’s a good idea to place links to previous issues in the footer. You’ll help those that for some reason missed them or have just signed up on your list.



  • Add links to terms of service, regulations, and new promotions. If law allows, try to gather all the legal conditions in one place and link to them, instead of overcrowding the footer with a mass of small print that confuses your audience.



When I think of the biggest flops people make when it comes to newsletter footers, I instantly think of the statement you probably know very well, and you may find in many newsletters. It usually goes like this:


“This newsletter was generated automatically. Don’t reply to it, as your message will not be read or replied to.”


It’s only a dozen words or so, but the message is devastating to your readers. You could just as well say:


“Dear Subscriber, you’re one of tens of thousands anonymous records in our database. We have no intention of replying to your emails, because we treat email marketing as a one-way communication channel that is no different than advertising on the radio or TV. If you don’t like it, please unsubscribe. We insist, though, you don’t contact us about it, because no one will read your email anyway. “


And what do you think about finishing your newsletter off with this kind of message? Not very effective, right? I trust you’ll steer clear of this type of language. :)


Well, we’ve come to the end of our “Increase your email’s impact” cycle. If you’ve learned something new or it helped you to optimize your email campaigns, feel free to share the posts with your friends on social media and leave your thoughts in the comments.


I can guarantee your feedback WILL BE READ on this blog. What’s more, you can even count on a reply. :)


You can read previous parts of the cycle here:


Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

  • http://www.canadavet.com Steven P

    Can’t agree more with the last point. One of my pet hates is emails sent from “no-reply@xxxxx”. Why can’t we reply. Surely it could be to info@ or service@ or something and the sender could use his/her own email program to sort out bounces.

  • http://www.newsuperaffiliateguide.com Guy Thompson

    This reminds me what I should be doing. And it is so true that one of the main reasons to unsubscribe is the arrogant way some so-called marketers try to trap their subscribers. I’ve even seen cases where the “unsubscribe” button only goes back to the sales page.

  • http://www.house-it.be Doron

    I find it hard to find part 1, 2 and 3 of “Increase Your Email’s Impact!

    It may be a good idea to put the links to the other articles right in each article again. (like youtube does with: ‘watch the response to this video)

  • Karolina Stefanowicz

    Thanks Doron, good point! We’ve just added the links to the previous parts of the cycle :)