Top tips

A design graduate’s guide to making a great first impression

by Sarah Ward on 30th April 2015

The creative world can be a tough cookie to crack, so when the opportunity comes along you want to make sure you leave a lasting impression. Use this handy guide to help get your foot in the door.

  • 1. Review your portfolio:

    Quality not quantity: Only your top eight to ten projects should make it – you won’t have time to talk about any more.
    Best piece first: First impressions count and if you leave the best till last, it might never get seen.
    Show additional skills: Creative Suite skills are a given. What other skills can you bring to the party?

  • 2. Do your research:

    Prepare your questions: Have something to say. Asking questions shows you’ve taken time to research them.
    Be prepared for criticism: Take on board constructive criticism. You need broad shoulders and a thick skin to survive.
    Think commercially: Be aware that what makes a good college solution, may not hack it in the real world.

  • 3. Interview etiquette:

    Don’t be late: Time is what we sell. If you get held up, call – we’re in the communication business.
    Dress sense: Be smart. It’s all about presentation, but don’t wear a suit if it makes you feel uncomfortable.
    Listen, consider, answer: Don’t rush your answers. Relate them to your experience and portfolio if you can.

  • 4. Internships:

    Make an impression: Doing good work isn’t enough. Make yourself available, ask to be involved in projects.
    Make yourself indispensable: Become part of the team. Talk to everyone – artworker to MD.
    Little things count: Make the tea, even if you don’t drink it. In on time and don’t leave on the dot.

Satellite is currently looking for a Web Designer. For more details, check out our careers page.

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Sarah WardA design graduate’s guide to making a great first impression

Email Marketing Top Tips

by Sarah Ward on 20th March 2015

So you’ve a new message to get out there or a fantastic new product to boast about. You might even be offering something special. You’ll need a good email to get the response you seek.

What marketing departments really want to know amongst many things is that you’ve got the message. One of the more important metrics used to establish the effectiveness of an email marketing campaign is one known as the open rate – expressed as a percentage, how many people “view” or “open” the message.

Here we bring you a few tips and tricks to maximize your email open rate.

Email Marketing design Top Tips
  • 1. Email setup

    An email from “” can look harsh, dismissive and easy to ignore. Why not credit the ‘from’ name to a real person or a department that is sending out the email.

  • 2. Subject lines

    Use this to your advantage. Your email ‘subject’ line should reflect your brand and engage your customers. Avoiding being bland and boring – unless that’s what you want to achieve!

  • 3. Personality

    Personalising an email is a great way to make the reader feel valued, and that the email has come from someone as opposed to a machine.

  • 4. Layout

    Good news. Your email has been opened. It now needs to do its job, which is to convey information and prompt a response. You may also have a journey set up that takes your reader to places of interest, even a purchase.

    This is where layout and design comes into play. One of the major advantages of using Satellite Creative is the years of design and layout experience we bring to good effective email designs.

  • 5. Be heard

    But don’t use SHOUTY CAPS. Get the message across without relying on the boldness of uppercase to drive the point home. We are seemingly increasingly more sensitive to such things these days.

  • 6. Be nice

    Sounds obvious. Send a welcome email to new customers. They’ve just registered with your company or submitted a request to join the newsletter. The reward from a nicely-crafted welcome email can be advantageous. Most customers will be expecting an instant response, with the likelihood of an opening rate of above 50%. You could simply say hello yet alternatively you could use the opportunity to engage with a relevant teaser such as an offer of something exclusive. As with everything, know your customers. Balance is the key.

  • 7. Click here

    Try to avoid CLICK HERE – these are bereft of any real thought. Your email will likely read better and get a better response if you use something more appealing, such as “OK, take me there” for example.

  • Keep going!

    Test test test. A/B Test. Litmus Test. Test again. Continuously. Try new things out to engage your readers. Make iterations gradually, refine your approach, get to know your audience and you’ll soon find it all coming together.

While we’ve only covered a small number of an otherwise exhaustive list of good practices (otherwise why would you need us?), bear in mind that there are many ways to increase your open-rates. Many of them are strategic yet most of them will be good old-fashioned common sense.

Email design is an art form and a skill and making one that works for you requires lots of care and judgement. And while making it look pretty (on as many devices as possible) is important, we never forget that it must also provide tangible results.

If you’d like a little help with your email marketing, give us a call on 01442 827768 or email us at

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Sarah WardEmail Marketing Top Tips