The Precedence of Images in Travel Emails & How Far You Should Go

  • August 4, 2016

    Do you remember what you studied in Grade VIII? Probably not. Do you remember the scenes from your favorite cartoon film you watched when you were in class VIII? Of course you do! A picture, they say, speaks louder than words, and so do statistics.

    A study states that 46% of marketers say photography is critical to their current marketing strategies. With so much said about the significance of images; why should the travel industry stay behind?

     The Precedence of Images in Travel Emails & How Far You Should Go - travel industry statistics

    Source: FROM CREATIVITY TO CONTENT- CMO Council Whitepaper

    When it comes to travel email marketing, an enticing image might be enough to engage and retain subscribers. In fact sending a travel email sans an image would be blasphemy! Without a great picture, how are you going to help your prospects imagine themselves at the locations you are promoting? Without great photos, you will be losing out on not just branding but conversions as well.

    But then should you just stuff your travel emails with images? Is that the mantra to succeed? Well, no!

    Some ESPs by default turn email images off and it is up to the subscribers to download images in order to view them. Hence, if it’s a background image you are using, providing an option such as a fallback color is pivotal. Another way to deal with this issue is to have alt and title text that appears when an image doesn’t load.

    An ideal travel marketing email should have at least 400 characters of text that justifies the reason for sending that email.

    The content should be crisp, and your copy should cut through the clutter, tempting the subscriber to take action. Using personalization helps a great deal in making your readers feel more valuable. Personalized marketing emails have 29% higher unique open rates and 41% higher unique click rates than non-personalized emails, according to Experian.

    Boutique Hotel Seven Days, by utilizing personalization in their travel email communications, established itself as a leader in the boutique hotel industry of Prague.

    Emails written on the basis of segmentation generate greater open and click-through rates than generic ones because segmentation gives the advantage of knowing the interests of subscribers in a particular segment. A case study reveals that Park Holidays saw 16% open rates and a 9% increase in their click-through rates in a year’s time after they segmented lists and sent different email content to different segments.

    So what do we exactly do? More of images or more text? Well, the main takeaway here is that you need to maintain an apt balance between text and images.

    Striking the right balance – Image Matters in Travel Emails

    First of all, why is it important to strike a balance between images and text? That is because it affects deliverability, Yes! Emails stuffed with images and very little text or vice versa are likely to raise a red flag for SPAM filters.

    The 60:40 text to image ratio is considered to be ideal for emails. This ratio not only saves your emails from landing in SPAM folders but also makes the email desirable to read.

    Lovely images balanced by sufficient text, makes this email from Premier Inn an ideal example of the right text-image ratio.

    The Precedence of Images in Travel Emails & How Far You Should Go

    Wrap Up

    Email marketers tend to focus more on list growth, segmentation, deliverability, content creation, and other ways of enhancing ROI. But did you know the immense potential email design holds? With a well-designed email, you can look forward to:

    • Better subscriber engagement
    • Better sharing of your travel emails
    • Better deliverability (with the right text: image ratio)

    What are the other factors you need to consider as a travel email marketers in order to make sure your email marketing campaign is a hit with your subscribers? Download the comprehensive 26 pages Travel Industry-Email Marketing whitepaper for more insights on the same.


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