Designing good looking newsletters in EHQ doesn’t have to be hard.
Below are some quick instructions on how to make a simple single column email with EHQ.
All you need is a basic image editing app like Photoshop, InDesign, Gimp, Canva or even Microsoft Paint (Yay it lives), some awesome online engagement projects, a few direct and catchy words and you’re away!
Step 1: Upload your banner
The first thing to do in order to make a good looking newsletter in EHQ is to get your banner ready.
At present, newsletter banners are pulled through from EHQ project pages.
This makes it’s easy to pull through your project banner for each newsletter communication.
You can upload your project banner on the Manage Screen for your project.
If you are using the Torquay theme, this banner will also show on your project page.
For our other templates, the banner will not show on your project pages and will be used solely as a newsletter banner.
You can also upload a generic banner for your newsletter, by choosing the site banner option and ensuring you have uploaded a suitable generic banner for your newsletter.
This banner is uploaded in the Site>Theme>Images, Colours and Fonts section of your site.
Again, if you are using Torquay, be careful because this will override your default live site banner.
Your banners should be at least 1440px wide and they can be any height you choose.
In this instance I have used a 1440px x 300px banner.
Step 2: Organise your newsletter images
The next step is to organise your newsletter images.
These will be the images you are going to use to represent your consultations and other articles.
By making all of your project images the same size you will create a much more cohesive looking newsletter.
Use your image editor to make all your images 600px x 250px.
Your images will be nice clean rectangular images like the example below.
Save these in a folder ready to upload to your newsletter.
You should also create any buttons that you would like to use in your newsletter.
To create buttons for this example I have used Canva.
Online tools like Canva make it easy to quickly make a whole range of graphics and elements for your EHQ site and we highly recommend you sign up and use it as an important tool in your online engagement toolkit.
In this example we will use these buttons for our call to action triggers and hyperlink them in our newsletter to the relevant consultations.
Below are examples of the two buttons I created. To do this I simply made two rectangles and overlaid some simple call-to-action text.
Each button should be saved as a seperate file as you will need to upload them into your newsletter builder separately.
Step 3: Build your email
Once you have organised your banner and buttons, and of course have your projects ready and published, it’s time to put together your newsletter.
Firstly, in the Email section of your site give your newsletter a subject heading.
This will be what shows when you send you email to your community members in the subject line.
Next, select the location of the banner which you created in step one.
Use the WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) editor to piece together your email. Start by adding a heading to your email.
When creating your email make sure you use the pre-defined style sheet and select H1 for this heading.
Next, write your introduction to the email. You can also use the placeholder [PARTICIPANT_SCREEN_NAME] to automatically generate the screen name of you community member into the email.
After this, place in your first image into the body of the wysiwyg editor using the insert image function of the editor.
Following your image, place a couple of returns to move to a new line.
Next, you should add a H2 heading, using the pre-defined style sheet, to write the name of your project announcement.
Make a couple more returns and then write your awesome call to action.
Remember, you are trying to get your community to participate with your projects, so be pithy and create a sense duty for people to get involved.
Add a couple more returns after your call to action text.
Next, you are going to upload another image, this time add your button.
Centre align your button by clicking on the line in which you have placed it and use the text alignment feature of the wysiwyg to centre the image.
Click on you button to create the hyperlink back to your project or to the location of your choosing.
Enter in a title and the URL where you want to send people.
If you are sending your community to an EHQ project, remember you only need to put the permalink into the link field.
You should then repeat this process until you successfully crafted your newsletter content.
Finish by placing a footer image or social media icons, which link to your social media presence.
Once you have done this, your email format should look something like the example below.