What 3 Food Brands Are Cooking Up In Their Email Design

When it comes to email marketing, the food industry takes the cake! Who’s investing in email design? Food delivery services, restaurants, recipe blogs, food newsletters, and many more businesses. Let’s take a look at 3 popular food brands and see what’s cooking in their email design.

Blue Apron: Blues, borders & blocks sets their emails apart

Blue Apron delivers fresh ingredients to people’s doors to make cooking meals easier.

A navy blue color palate reinforces the company’s approachable and friendly visual identity and service. Their emails include a combination of striking food photography coupled with distinctive blue text, illustrations, and borders.

Here’s a recent email from Blue Apron:

Blue Apron food industry email design

What Works

The general layout hits all the right notes. A simple header immediately leads readers’ eyes to the email’s central¬†content.

We also love that the email’s¬†first module has simple spot illustrations¬†that¬†provide a visual, easy-to-follow introduction to how the process works. A mini infographic like this helps readers understand exactly what they’d be buying into (which also works perfectly in a getting started email, too).

The blue border used in the second module even gives the email an organized, hierarchical feel, and the images really pop on the simple white background. Blue Apron knows it’s better to show than tell!

Here’s a shorter email from Blue Apron:

Blue Apron food industry email design

In all its messages, Blue Apron leans into the brand’s blue color to create a recognizable visual identity. This particular email is almost comprised entirely of an animated GIF, as seen below:

Blue Apron food industry email design

What Could Be Improved

Although this layout is beautiful and playful, GIFs can be problematic and Blue Apron could improve the email by layering live text and a bulletproof button on top of the GIF. This ability is one of the most powerful features of the BEE editor, and you can learn how to create great text overlays here.

The “Download our new iPhone app” image in the header looks a bit blurry, which should be optimized. (Read How to Optimize Images for Mobile Emails¬†for tips). Or, the brand could use text instead of an image.

Bottom Line

Blue Apron’s emails are recognizable and well-designed. The combination of gorgeous photography¬†and illustration make these¬†messages appealing and friendly, while the brand’s blue reinforces a familiar look.


Chobani: Visual simplicity leads the way

Chobani, the Greek yogurt brand, has skyrocketed to the top of the healthy eating industry. They have a great product and are smart in their marketing. The visual brand identity is bright, cheerful,¬†and energetic. The company’s approach to email design involves letting high-quality photography lead the way. Here’s a recent example:

Chobani food industry email design

What Works

Chobani uses an inverted pyramid approach to organize its content. The email leads with a fantastic hero image, followed by a header, body text, and a call to action. They keep their email design simple and choose to include only one image, so that their readers don’t get¬†overwhelmed or fail to take action and get the recipe!

Here’s another similar¬†email, this time with an animated GIF as its hero image. The GIF is followed by plain text and a bulletproof CTA, which works to make the message well-balanced and effective.

Chobani food industry email design

And here’s the animation in action: ¬†Chobani food industry email design

What Could Be Improved

To help these emails maintain a light, playful feel, Chobani could skip the bold text. Opting for a thinner typeface‚ÄĒor even a more colorful CTA button‚ÄĒmight enhance the brand’s look and feel.

Bottom Line

We can’t argue with simplicity! Chobani’s emails are fun to look at and easy to read


Maple Kitchen: Grid design adds to a polished look

Even though Maple Kitchen recently stopped their daily food delivery service, we can still learn from how the brand approached their email design.

Maple Kitchen’s visual brand identity is polished and clean, with a consistent black-and-white color scheme that offsets¬†colorful images. Here’s a recent email from the brand:

Maple Kitchen food industry email design

What Works

Maple relies on¬†a set of templates, which means the brand doesn’t waste time reinventing the wheel when designing each message. The brand maintains a uniform look by always employing the same header, font and image style, and HTML background color pattern (white content blocks, on top of a light gray “border”).

Another example (trimmed) below shows that a photo collage is a smart way to display stunning images with text and avoid the pitfalls of a single-image email.

Maple Kitchen food industry email design

What Could Be Improved

Including live text and bulletproof buttons (instead of images) would be better. In the BEE editor, it’s easy to create a responsive photo collage¬†by juxtaposing text blocks with images. (Or, you could even have text and button overlays across images).

Bottom line

Templates are the way to go. Maple’s visual identity is reinforced every time a message is sent.


Wrap-up: Takeaways for food industry email design

These forward-thinking food brands get a lot of things right! Here’s what we can learn from their email designs:

  1. Streamline your header design‚ÄĒkeep it simple!
  2. Optimize images for mobile to avoid blur.
  3. Use borders and HTML background colors to create content organization.
  4. Use a background image with text and a CTA button, instead of uploading one single image section.
  5. Organize content with an inverted pyramid layout.
  6. Keep your email design focused.
  7. Send more animated GIFs!
  8. Consider using a template for design consistency.

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