I've been using CM for a few months now to gather email addresses, and I'm about to take a stab at creating a template for my newsletters. I have read a bunch of the help topics and here's what I've been able to gather so far:
Should I be creating my template with (gulp!) tables and style it with CSS using classes and ID's, or can I create a more standards-compliant template using div's and so on? From what I can see, alot of the help topics (and forum posts) seem to be talking about building the campaigns with tables... Before I get too into the development of a template, I'd like to know what I am "allowed" to do.
Check out our email design guidelines http://www.campaignmonitor.com/blog/archives/2008/05/2008_email_design_guidelines.html. Tables are going to be your best bet and you want to combine those with inline styles. It's scary and rather icky for a standards based designer but that's what will work best in the majority of major email clients. You can go standards based but you'd want to keep the design very very simple and no matter what include inline styles.
Perfect!!! I just printed that out, and it appears (at a glance) to answer all my questions. I'll give it a good read in a few minutes.
In the meantime... bring on the tables woot woot!