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5 Must-Have Email Newsletter Elements That Increase Engagement

Email newsletters have the power to take your marketing to new levels. In fact, studies have found that email newsletters can really help your blog to grow online.

Still, creating an engaging newsletter requires a lot more than pasting a couple of hastily written articles into a standard template. To create a newsletter that has your subscribers clamoring for more, you need something that stands out and grabs their attention.

This all starts with eye-catching pictures and visuals to bold headlines and calls to action. Not sure where to begin? We've got a few tips to help you get started as a great content creator.

Email Newsletter Elements to Drive an Action

There are several components of an email newsletter that you should focus on to drive engagement. Here are the 5 most important attention-grabbing elements:

5 steps to creating eye-catching newsletters - Learn about five essential elements of an effective email newsletter - Image

Write Catchy Subject Lines

It all starts with your subject line. If it’s boring, it doesn't matter how awesome your newsletter is because nobody’s going to open it.

So, what are some things you can do to create more engaging email subject lines?

Start by making sure your subject line length is following best practices. According to email service provider, AWeber, you should put your most important information first in your subject line. This way, you make sure your audience sees this information.

To make your subject lines stand out, make it short, punchy, and to the point. Emojis are another effective way to add interest to an email subject line. One study found that subject lines with emojis have up to 56% higher open rates than those without.

When writing a subject line, be clear about what kind of content the reader will receive in the newsletter. Giving your readers an idea of what to expect (and then following through) will further drive engagement and trust in your brand.

Benefit Driven Headlines

Once your readers have opened your email newsletter, your headlines along with your visuals are used together to tell a story. This story needs to grab their attention and convince them to read on.

Here are some tips for writing an attention-grabbing headline:

  • Highlight the benefits - what knowledge or information will they get by reading your article.
  • Use numbers if applicable - a study by Conductor found people click on a headline more often if it includes a number. For example, '5 Ways to Create a Benefit Driven Headline' would perform better than 'Create Benefit Driven Headlines'
  • Create 'how to' headlines - audiences are clamoring for more information. Pose your headline as a 'how to' question.
  • Keep it short and to the point - you should always write a newsletter assuming people are going to skim. Don’t make them search for the benefit. Be clear, concise, and get to the point quickly.

When writing your headlines, keep in mind that your readers may be skimming your newsletter rather than reading it word-for-word. This is where having well-written headlines can make all the difference. 

Storytelling Photos

The old adage 'a picture is worth a thousand words' is never more relevant than with an email newsletter.

Email campaigns with images have a 42% higher click-through rate than email campaigns without images. But they need to be the right photos. How do you know what the right photo is for your newsletter?

Your photo needs to complement your headline because that’s where the story is told through your headlines and images together.

Here are a few factors to consider when searching for the right photo:

  • Quality matters - You want to make sure you have high-resolution images.
  • Relevancy - Again, make sure it helps to tell your story.
  • Keep your audience in mind - Choose images your audience can relate to.

Once you have an idea of the type of image you want to use, search PikWizard  for over 1 million royalty-free stock images. 


Now that you've grabbed your reader's attention with a great subject line, compelling headlines, and stunning visuals, it's time to focus on the actual copy of your newsletter. Remember that the goal here is to get your readers to your website.

To achieve this, most brands succeed by including a snippet of the article in the email newsletter. To access the entire article, your subscribers need to click the call to action to read the article on your website or blog.

Ultimately, it will be up to you how much of your article you want to include in your email newsletter. The key is to include enough copy to pique your readers' interests to the point that they feel compelled to read the rest on your website.

The amount of copy you include in your email newsletter may also depend on whether your newsletter focuses on just one piece of content or multiple articles.

Call to Action

Don't miss out on the chance to get your newsletter readers to take action! Incorporating a strong and clear call to action within your email newsletter can make all the difference, but it's all about correctly positioning your CTA and getting the verbiage just right.

In an email newsletter, your CTA should always be positioned at the bottom of your content. When writing a call to action, try to create a sense of urgency or state the benefit they will receive after reading your content.

For example:

  • Get your tips today
  • Learn how to increase your store traffic
  • Don’t miss out

Just be sure to keep your CTA brief. Ideally, you shouldn't need more than a few words to get your point across.

It’s also recommended that you place the link to your website or blog in the image and headline.

How to Get Started

Still feeling a little overwhelmed at the task of crafting an email newsletter that will engage your audience? Don’t worry, we’ll walk you through the simple steps to get started.

Start With a Template or Drag-and-Drop Editor

Of course, you want an eye-catching newsletter design to maximize engagement. If you're not a design pro, however, creating your own email newsletter may be intimidating. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be.

Go to AWeber.com and choose from hundreds of pre-built newsletter templates. Then simply add your logo, colours that go well together, PikWizard images, and headline, copy, and call to action.

Find Relevant Images

Because the right images will play a vital role in maximizing engagement with your email newsletter, having a reliable source of high-quality stock images is a must. PikWizard allows you to find more than one million stock photos and videos that are royalty-free and safe for commercial use with absolutely no attribution required.

PikWizard's easy-to-use search bar and most popular categories page make it quick and effortless to find high-resolution images that are sure to capture your audience's attention. And once you've found the right image, you can import it into AWeber and then simply drag the image into your newsletter. It really is that easy!

Send to Newsletter Subscribers

Once your newsletter is created, give it one last careful look for typos, formatting issues, and other errors before you send it out. If everything looks good, it's time to send your newsletter to your email subscribers who opted in to receive it. To optimize engagement and click-throughs, you might even want to schedule a specific date or time to send out your email.

Here’s an example of some stunning photos from PikWizard that are used to begin creating a newsletter using AWeber’s drag and drop editor.

AWeber email marketing software - Learn about five essential elements of an effective email newsletter - Image


Now that you have your newsletter created, it’s time to test. Testing is important for you to discover exactly what works with your audience. Not sure if you’re using the right headline or images? Then test these elements of your newsletter.

With testing, you’ll learn which elements resonate best with your audience. You can then apply this knowledge to your future email newsletters.

The Bottom Line on Creating Engaging Email Newsletters

Crafting an email newsletter that will truly engage your audience will take a lot of careful planning and strategizing on your part. However, with the right design and elements in place, you'll be well on your way to sending out a newsletter that your audience will be excited to read. From there, you'll enjoy higher open rates, click-through rates, and traffic to your website.

Meanwhile, as your newsletter gains more devoted followers, you'll build a stronger reputation for your brand and stronger relationships with your audience. All of this is a win-win—so if you're not already prioritizing email newsletters as a part of your marketing tips, now may be the time.