HTML Emails / Newsletters

Your HTML email or newsletter can be an effective strategy for keeping your audience up-to-date about your faculty or program, workshops and events, timely topics, and new research. This section provides information on best practices in email marketing, and links to template options along with a Guide for Using HTML Newsletter Templates (PDF).

Minimum Requirements

The minimum requirement for all UBC HTML email newsletters is to include the UBC HTML email wrapper as a frame for the content of the newsletter. The wrapper consists of:

  1. UBC Signature (logo, tagline, university wordmark) in white
  2. Background option of either:
    • UBC Blue, or
    • UBC Brand Cloud image (Please keep in mind that the UBC Brand image option works best for short announcements or newsletters, as the image will tile if the content is longer than the background image.)

The wrapper is 600 px wide (per the provided templates), in accordance with standard best practice for optimal display in various software programs such as Outlook, Gmail, Hotmail, etc.

If your unit has a pre-existing sub-branded newsletter, the existing newsletter would be contained within the UBC HTML email wrapper.

Content Options

Within the wrapper, there are three components to the HTML email templates:

  1. Unit header
  2. Feature image
  3. Content template

Unit Header

The unit header includes:

  • Unit title: Type in white (specific typography specifications are listed below under Font & Typography)
  • Background colour: Either UBC Grey or your unit colour

Feature Image

A feature image may be included following the unit header. Image selection is at the discretion of the unit. If possible, the image should click through to relevant content on the unit’s website. E.g.: Image of Chan Centre would click through to the Chan Centre website.

Content Templates

There are two content templates available; the one you use depends on the purpose of the newsletter. Each template also has multiple styling options depending on the style of wrapper you would like to use, as well as whether your unit has a sub-identity colour.

1. Announcement Template

  • A one-column template for announcing news, a feature story, or an event

2. News Article Template

  • A two-column template used to feature multiple articles / stories

Font & Typography

Unit title: Arial
Title: Arial bold or Helvetica bold
Body copy, contact information, and footer: Arial regular or Helvetica regular

Titles, Separation Lines, and Links
Note: If a unit does not have a sub-identity brand colour, we recommend UBC Grey be used instead in the below referenced applications.

  • Announcement version: Unit sub-identity colour should apply to the background of the unit title and the feature image.
  • Announcement and news story version: The separation line and “See more” link should use the unit brand colour.


Unit logo and program logo (if applicable) should be located at the bottom of the newsletter per the provided template. Black and white or greyscale versions of the logo(s) are the suggested options, but full colour is acceptable.

Social Media Icons

Icons that pertain to the specific unit’s social media presence may be represented in the unit’s sub-identity colour.


Some users may wish to create specifically worded disclaimers. E.g.: the Faculty of Medicine might want to caution its readers to always seek independent medical advice.


Will you be collecting personal information using the newsletter or email campaign? If so, you must link to a privacy policy; otherwise it’s not necessary and can be removed. If you aren’t sure, please contact the University Privacy Officer. When you collect personal information, in addition to the above consent language, it is also necessary to provide a privacy statement. Suggested Language and Disclaimers around privacy and consent is available for UBC communicators.

Other Mandatory Elements

Background Information about CASL

The CASL Legislation and Draft Regulations

For more information about the CASL and UBC contact: Access and Privacy Manager, Office of the University Counsel. Email:

Download guide (PDF) to using and sending UBC HTML newsletter templates with Industry Mailout, MailChimp, or Thunderbird.