Create Stunning HTML Email That Just Works! (Anglais) Broché – 15 septembre 2009
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Buy this book if you want to learn how to market yourself as an html email coder.
This book offers some good theory on html email, providing OK info on the 'why' you should learn email html. But if you want to learn 'how' to code html email, SKIP THIS BOOK! Only a small fraction of the book is actual information about coding. A lot of the time they just reference the sample code (which is easy to download). The problem with this is that THE SAMPLE CODE DOESN'T WORK!
It is a fact that most email clients will strip the header info off of any html email, which is one of the major things that makes html email coding different. You can not use CSS code in the header because it likely will not appear in the email, everything must be inline. The ENTIRE sample set heavily uses CSS in the header. The sample code in the book relies on this, leaving out many parts of the code. This makes the sample code useless.
This was the only book on the topic that I could find, and I read the reviews that were not so hot, but I decided to give it a shot. MISTAKE!
I gave it two stars because it does have good information on marketing yourself as an html email designer, on why it is different and on some of the legal information. I might some day use some of this with clients. But this is not why I got this book.
To learn coding, you are better off saving the money and searching for references online.
The first thing I realized is that every mail client renders so many parts of HTML email differently. The book is only ~139 pages, but it hits home fast with tons of free sample code to download. The author of the book is with a large email distribution platform, so the knowledge was definitely there. The chapters broke down as follows:
<li>Planning an Email Campaign</li>
<li>Design for the Inbox</li>
<li>Coding Your Emails</li>
<li>Selling Email To Your Clients</li>
Chapter 6 was for those that provide solutions to businesses and customers. He did a good job summarizing, but I will skip that part of the review since I read the other chapters twice.
He does an excellent job covering the business case and some basic statistics. But, more importantly, how people interact via email compared to other mediums. From the opening chapter he delves into formatting, structure and client support. I think it was one of the most important areas for anyone to be aware of. With the listing of numerous tables, it showed how every email client provider lacks support for so many areas of tags, formats and just plain simple HTML.
He gives great visual examples from numerous newsletters, makes block representation of successful examples and then gives away about 30 free templates to start using immediately that will work with any client type (outside of text clients of course).
The chapter on permission and some legal requirements was well needed for anyone getting into HTML mail. Some would think that HTML email is past it's time. Web 2.0 is the total future and stop wasting time on just email. After seeing the power of what it can do on my own the past few months, I am sold.
The book covers a range of topics including planning email campaigns, how email design differs from web design, what is and isn't supported in HTML emails, and how to make sure that you have the recipient's permission to send them your email (along with how to make sure that they remember that they gave permission).
Just about everything you need to know about what does and doesn't work is included in this book along with statistics that have been gathered over many years with respect to email campaigns that enable the author to provide meaningful percentages on many aspects that you would otherwise just have to guess.
While there were a few things that the book suggests where I initially thought that the information was incomplete due to the limitations of the approach not being mentioned straight away, those limitations were all mentioned within a page or two so as long as you actually read each section right through, you will get information both on what you can achieve through using selected options and what the limitations of those options are.