By Nerea Boada, on 4 December 2020
Email marketing has been and continues to be a central pillar of a strong digital marketing strategy. While some emails go unread and plague our inboxes until we finally unsubscribe, some cut through the noise and are actually enjoyed. The question is: how do you make your email marketing irresistible and compelling enough to be opened and read? For a healthy dose of inspiration we’ve compiled 9 examples of stellar email campaigns for you that knock it out of the park.
Before we dive into the inspiration, there are a handful of essentials you need to get started:
- An all in one email builder such as those offered by MailChimp or HubSpot that allow you to develop and execute your email campaigns with simple but powerful tools.
- Ensure your emails are optimized and responsive across all devices so your hard work is actually visible to your subscribers.
- Add personalized elements such as greetings by name and don’t bombard subscribers with blocks of text. Get to the point and sprinkle in some attractive imagery.
- Finally, a powerful call to action is absolutely essential to a successful email marketing campaign. Guide readers towards your offer in a logical and natural way, avoiding sales-y pitches that offer no real value.
9 Best Email Marketing Campaign Examples
Effective email marketing campaigns combine style, functionality and oftentimes humor to engage readers. Our examples below make use of these elements and more to drive subscriptions, sales and customer retention.
This annual music, arts and tech festival in Austin, Texas attracts over 400,000 people from all over the globe who come to experience the magic up close and personal. SXSW drives a savvy email campaign which utilizes segmentation to deliver focused content that’s of interest to specific groups of subscribers. This ensures their email list isn’t receiving irrelevant information which only lands as a nuisance. SXSW features a myriad of events and artistic mediums, and so it makes no sense to send out blanket emails; content is segmented to match what subscribers are specifically interested in.
Using photos posted on social channels and on mobile phones, Chatbooks creates affordable and fun photo albums which can be crafted and bought online. Chatbooks makes use of automated emailing workflows which send customers a series of emails every month for six months which reminds them to purchase again.
If and when abandoned carts occur, an email is sent three days later with a discount code to remind shoppers to complete their purchase. The email also contains additional products which shoppers might be interested in. A second email is sent three days later if needed.
Apparel company Chubbies is well known for their fun Black Friday email campaigns. A clever mix of outrageous subject lines, quirky sender names and fun email content has helped them gain a cult following for their sales. By not taking themselves too seriously Chubbies grabs readers attention and entices them to open emails. Once they click, the fun continues with more marketing twists like this teaser of new products:
Chubbies is a great example of how out of the box tactics and off-the-wall humor in email marketing create a fun experience for customers while also driving sales.
By winning the 2018 Boston Marathon Desiree Linden became the first woman to do so in over 30 years. To celebrate her accomplishment, long-running sponsor Brooks Sports created an email marketing campaign focusing on the runner’s’ historical win. A strong CTA reading, "See Desiree's go-to gear." prompted people to shop for the shoes and apparel worn by their star athlete.
Simplicity is key to Uber’s email communications. They get right to the point and pose their CTA upfront and with clear intentions. If readers want more detailed information they can find it but this simple and direct approach has obviously worked. Another nice touch is their calendar integration option which they promote creatively in this email below:
Poncho is a customizable weather forecast app that has made checking the weather, well, fun! Their emails continue this style with colorful design and witty copy that reemphasizes their branding. Poncho makes use of GIFs, fun imagery and easily digestible text to make their emails actually enjoyable.
Wouldn't you love to receive unsubscribe suggestions for email subscriptions that you never read? Well virtual job interview platform HireVue does just that, and keeps things light while doing so. Like many brands on this list their messaging is thoughtful and fun yet serves a practical purpose. It’s also smart from HireVue to clean up their subscriber lists as low open rates damage email deliverability.
Siege Media goes the plain text route but uses subtle tactics like single sentence paragraphs to keep content easily digestible. They also use brand colors and keep their message minimal and concise overall. Siege Media shows us that plain text emails can still be highly effective if done right.
Sometimes subscribers are interested in your offers but aren’t necessarily ready to act on them. Humble Bundle provides the option to be reminded about the offer at a later date creating options instead of a straight now or never approach. They use segmentation to then add these recipients to a reminder list which sends a follow up email before the offer expires.
Email marketing is alive and well. These brands use a blend of tactics to keep readers engaged and entertained while still maintaining marketing strategy and branding. Key takeaways overall are to focus on creative yet simple methods and maintain a sense of humor throughout. Unique and surprising content keeps open rates up and has readers coming back for more.