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Multichannel | 4 min read

Gmail’s updated Promotions tab empowers brands with exciting tools to stand out in the inbox

By Kathleen Schaefer
Analyst, Intelligence Products

The days of a text-based inbox are behind us. Gmail has recently rolled out the most visual inbox update ever, giving marketers a way to start the new year with a bang!  The new Gmail promotions annotation allows marketers to go beyond utilizing traditional email subject lines to advertise their promotional details. With the new Promotions tab annotation available within the Gmail mobile app, marketers now have the opportunity to feature emails and promotion details directly within the inbox. This means that more subscribers will see the promotion, without the need to open every email. Although this update is currently only available to Gmail mobile app users on Android and iOS, Gmail has confirmed that they will be rolling this feature out to Gmail’s web client early this year. 

Get your promotion details directly in front of your subscribers not once… but TWICE

With the introduction of the new enriched inbox promotional tab, Gmail has made it easier to provide subscribers with information about your hottest deals and promotions. This new feature also unlocks the potential for marketers to feature their email not once, but twice. Subscribers can view the new visual promotions once initially delivered, and -using the promotion’s expiration date - Gmail can display the message again right before the promotion ends.

Utilize multiple Promotions tab annotation capabilities in Gmail to pack a powerful punch

Logo: Although the ability to display a brand’s logo within the inbox is not new, this tactic continues to make it easier for subscribers to sift through their email and easily locate your brand’s deployments. In addition, displaying a logo helps build trust with subscribers, reinforcing that this is in fact legitimate mail and not a spoof deployment.

Single Image Preview: Bring your brand’s visual content to the inbox! The single image preview allows marketers to customize and promote their visual content directly within the inbox. This unlocks the huge potential to capture your subscribers’ attention utilizing more than text based subject lines.

Green deal badge: Highlight your best offer! This green deal badge allows marketers to cut straight to the chase and advertise their best promotion. Marketers can customize and populate this unique field to suit their promotional calendar. Examples include “Percentage Off,” “Free Shipping,” or “BOGO” call outs.

Grey discount code badge: Do you currently utilize discount codes? Gmail’s new promotional annotations allow you to provide these details directly within the inbox. Marketers can customize their discount codes specifically for tracking purposes. No discount code, no problem! This field is completely optional.

Expiration date: All good things must come to an end, and this includes sales and promotions! Reinforce a sense of urgency by including your promotion’s expiration date directly within the inbox.

How can you begin employing these new features?

Annotations can be added as JSON-LD in a script tag within the head of your message HTML. This information specifies deal details—discount codes, the type of offer, and featured images. Don’t worry- implementation is easy! You can test and preview your annotations directly on Gmail’s developer resource page here: https://developers.google.com/gmail/promotab/overview

For additional tips and tricks regarding this new Promotions tab feature, please visit Gmail’s best practices forum here: https://developers.google.com/gmail/promotab/best-practices

Analyst, Intelligence Products

Kathleen Schaefer

Kathleen Schaefer is an Analyst on the Intelligence Products team at Yes Marketing. On a day to day basis she works directly with digital marketers to help them understand the performance of their email marketing efforts ranging from sender reputation and deliverability to analyzing competitor data and providing strategic recommendations. Previously, Kathleen taught web design courses at Fanshawe College and managed the corporate college website as their Web Content Manager. With diplomas in graphic design and digital marketing, she has experience with numerous touch points within the digital marketing industry.