I’ll just go ahead and admit it – right here on this blog. I have a problem. More specifically, I have a YouTube problem. As in, I cannot stop watching content on YouTube! There is so much knowledge (and sometimes, lack thereof) and variety in YouTube videos and how the platform is being used that it’s amazing.

Last weekend, while sitting down to have a quick lunch, I pulled up YouTube to see if anything interesting popped out at me. In my recommended videos was a mini-documentary about the invention of the iPhone. This kind of stuff is right up my alley!

There are a lot of cool little nuggets in the documentary. But the one thing I keep coming back to is what Steve Jobs’ reaction was when the unofficial group of Apple employees came up with the first prototypes of this new smartphone device. As much as Steve Jobs is credited for changing the world with the introduction of the iPhone, he actually hated the prototypes. At the time, he couldn’t see a reason a person would desire such a device. He was quoted as saying “The only thing something like this would be good for is reading on the toilet.”

Say what you will about Steve Jobs, but that man could see the future!

I mean, what an incredibly predictive statement! In a recent study on emails conducted by Adobe, the findings indicated that almost 55% of respondents do, in fact, read their emails while in the bathroom.

With that being said, it’s also being widely speculated, based on current trends, that 2020 will be the first year that more emails will be opened and read on mobile devices versus desktop and laptop computers. This means that more readers will be opening up your content anywhere and everywhere!

Introducing the K.E.S.S. strategy: Keep Email Simple, Smarty!

What exactly is the K.E.S.S. strategy? Summarized in four key points, simple emails need to contain:

  • Mobile optimization. This one kind of goes without saying now that we’re branching the second decade of the new millennium. But somehow, every day, I open emails on my phone that aren’t optimized for the mobile experience. Make sure yours are!
  • Easy images and graphics. Does the header image or your logo overtake the top of your emails? This doesn’t display well on a mobile device! Keep your email images and graphics small, well placed and not interrupting the scrolling flow of reading the email.
  • Quick content. The current attention span of an average consumer today is eight seconds. Eight. That attention span gets even shorter when skimming email content on a mobile device. Don’t send out emails with long, elegantly flowing, paragraphs explaining the new promotion. Keep it short and to the point!
  • A clear call to action. This is one of those points that should also go without saying. But again, every day, I open emails with the call to action links buried in content or put in as a plain-text link. Stop this practice! Remember, in the mobile experience, we’re working with thumbs here. CTAs should be big, bold buttons just waiting to be tapped.

Emails aren’t going anywhere, as survey after survey has shown marketers in the past decade. People still read and rely on emails to get information and be made aware of promotions. The difference is, now that we’re a more mobile-focused society, our email trends need to follow suit.