Campaign of the Month

Email design best practice with Costa Coffee

Animation and personalization create a fun and interactive newsletter for Costa Coffee Club members.

Animation and personalization create a fun and interactive newsletter for Costa Coffee Club members.

Company name: Costa Coffee
Agency: Karmarama – An independently owned creative British advertising agency based in London. They offer fully-integrated services, with a view to brand-building, and managing customer relationships.

Campaign details

Subject line: Welcome to your monthly shot of Costa…
Open: 44%
Click: 12% of opened


What data was used?

Database of Costa Coffee Club account owners up to April 2014.

Who was the campaign targeted at?

All the Costa Coffee Club members who had agreed to receive emails from Costa. The campaign is a monthly newsletter so it serves as an information and branding point.


  1. To keep the 1.6 million+ Costa Coffee Club email subscribers informed through a fun and interactive newsletter
  2. Make club members associate Costa with the ‘voice of coffee’

What makes this a performing campaign?

Costa have recently started using MessageFocus to launch their monthly newsletters and this one performed particularly well. They integrated all the requirements of modern email design:

  1. an animated GIF to break the static monotony of the email environment
  2. lots of personalization
  3. and of course, mobile responsive coding

The GIF is an animation of a fresh cup of coffee being poured. It’s placed at the top of the email, making it on-brand, fun and enticing to the viewer right from start.

Costa also remembered who their target is: Coffee Club members. So apart from name personalization, they pulled in data like Club Card number and number of points to date. Then they matched the number of points to the closest reward to entice customers more. Costa had short and punchy calls to action with clear demarcation to make them easily accessible on a mobile platform.

The results

The email achieved a fantastic 44% open-rate which is considerably above the average for this industry. The clear subject line delivered what it promised: clear, short ‘shots’ of content showcasing Costa’s heritage, knowledge and innovation.

Even though the click-through rate was not as impressive as the open-rate, Adestra’s Heatmap Report showed that some customers scrolled through the whole email. The most popular links were the ‘Log in to your account’ and ‘Giveaways’ CTAs.

What does this mean? Monthly newsletters are generally a branding and nudging exercise. And Costa’s did just that using effective email design. It exposed just under a million customers to their branding and key messages, enticing them to get a fresh cup of coffee with the animation placed right at the top.