Vlog: Using Contextual Images in your E-mail Templates with Dominic Wilson
Hello everyone, this is Dominic Wilson, Technical Campaign Consultant at Profusion. I’m back again with another new haircut. Today I’m going to be talking a little bit more about dynamic content within emails. And this time I’m gonna talk specifically around contextual images, and what you can use them for. And also, I’ll be covering off the requirements be able to get up and running and using contextual images in your own email templates.
So essentially, what a contextual image is, is an image that is within your email template, that point of opening for the customer, it will detect the context in which it is opened and give a image according to that context. So the context can be anything you choose, and some of those an external data source. So one of the typical ones is going to be the time so detect the time that they email you opened and display an image accordingly. So you might have a voucher that is applicable for people opening in the evening versus one in the morning. And your email will change depending whether the customer opens in the morning or within the evening. There are lots of different uses for this, not just the time, but you can also use other sources such as the weather, you can detect the device that the customer is opening the email on. So if they’re using an Apple device versus an Android device, you can display different content in from that respect. You can also display different content depending on the location of the customer at the point that they opened. So for example, you could have customers who are opening in London, and we’ll have a banner that shows the nearest branch within London and do it thing if the customer is opening in Manchester for example. So, there are loads of different uses for it. And you can also set up your own individual data streams and ask the image to go and look at that data stream on a on a remote server and look at the context shown within there. Something we have done previously is using the current exchange rate and pulling that information into an image a contextual image within customers templates, so it is accurate at that time, even if the exchange rate has changed over the last few days, since you sent the email, it will be up to date because it looks at the remote server and finds out what the current exchange rates are. And so that is the The major difference between contextual images and the dynamic content which I was speaking about in my previous video. The the contextual images will update at the point the customer opens the email. So it is always relevant information they are seeing. Whereas the dynamic content that I spoke about previously, is content that is locked down at the point that you send it based on the customers data that you hold on the database. So these contextual images are a really great way to kind of be able to display relevant information even if a customer is opening X number of days after the point that you sent the email template.
So one of the major drawbacks we have using contextual images is the fact that they are images. And that means that it’s not really suitable for putting in blocks or paragraphs of copy. Because you’re gonna have to put this within an image and if you try to put text into an image, lies a paragraph of text, the quality of it will will never be be as crisp as actual live copy. And it will it will not properly be suitable for screen readers that people might be using to read your email templates. So from that point of view, it’s not great if you want to be putting in changing text essentially. So it is more for images that you want to change. So think about banners and you know, big splashy offers you can put within your email template. The other major consideration with using contextual images is that you’re going to need a supplier who manages that and typically they will give you access to a browser based dashboard where you can go in and create your contextual images, set up the rules, all that kind of thing and then export the image and use that within your email template.
At Profusion, we’ve worked with KickDynamic and Moveable Ink in the past to create contextual images. So check them out, they will generally charge you a cost per impression as well. So once you’ve sent your email, the number of opens you get on the email template will be charged back. So you need to consider that and consider your ROI on using it within the template. So yeah, it’s it is a powerful tool, but you know, you need to use it within the right context.
So that was my very brief overview of what a contextual image is within an email template. If you’d like to find out more, please get in touch. And I’ll be back with more videos in the future. If there’s something specific you’d like to find out about then, please let us know. Thank you very much.