1. Create a new message.Log in to your Bronto account and select Messages under the Message tab. Then, choose Create New Message and select Email under Message Type. Create a name for your message and select Email Message Editor. You’ll see the content palette on the left and your blank canvas on the right.
2. Adjust your settings.Begin in Settings at the bottom of the palette, and select Message Design. Here, you can set default elements, such as background and image, border, font styles and size, text alignment, and message width. Every message defaults to a standard width of 640px, but you can adjust that sizing if you like. These default settings should be the styles you plan to use most often across your message. You can customize each container and element, explained below, to use specific styles as you create your message content.
3. Add containers.
Now it’s time to create the wireframe and layout for your message. Select the Containers section from the palette, choose which you’d like to use, then drag and drop onto your message canvas. Bronto containers offer from one to six columns, and there is no limit to the number of containers you can use. Once on the canvas, hover over any container to see additional options, including Move, Edit, Copy and Delete. In the Edit menu, you can control mobile rendering and visibility, column width (for multi-column containers), and styles specific to that container. Jocelyn Yale's blog article from last August goes into further detail on the mobile choices available. When you use containers with multiple columns, be sure to use the mobile preview option to ensure your content and columns render as expected.
4. Add elements.Add elements to your containers by dragging them from the palette and dropping them onto the canvas. Choose any combination of available elements - these are the most commonly used:
- Text – This is the text content you want to include in the container. This element also gives options to further customize the styling for entire element block, or simply for highlighted text.
- Image – You can insert externally hosted images or access Bronto's Hosting to upload a new file or access existing images.
- Button – Also known as a "bulletproof" button because it is visible even when email images are disabled. Add text for your call to action.
- Text grid – This tool allows you to add spreadsheet-like gridlines to your message.
- HTML – Use this element to copy and paste custom HTML content within your message.
5. Save or insert content tags.Select the Content category in the editor palette if you would like to optionally add headers and/or footers to your message. Here, you also can save or insert content tags, which are reusable containers of content for the body, header and footer of your message. You can save one or more containers from this message as a new content tag, or you can insert tags you’ve already created. This is helpful when you are creating messages to use across multiple communications. Bronto’s Professional Services team often uses content tags as message templates, saving entire email messages as content tags. You can edit individual containers in a content tag with multiple containers.
6. Preview your message.
Finally, select Preview in the upper right-hand corner, to review how your email will render on desktop and mobile. Mobile preview shows both portrait and landscape views. Note that horizontal containers in your message will, by default, stack one on top of the other, but you can control this option within each multi-column container. Use these best practices to design your next email message in Bronto, and let your Account Manager know how it’s going! Your feedback helps us improve our platform and understand how you and your team use Bronto to attract and engage your customers. To learn more about how to use Bronto's Message Editor, watch the webinar.