Chapter 6

Chapter 6: Email Marketing

Do you check your email every day? 

If so, then you might be comforted in knowing that 99% of consumers do too. Yes, 99%.

And get this, over half check their emails first thing in the morning. More people are fiending for emails than they are their coffee!

Don’t let anyone try to fool you into thinking email marketing is a dinosaur. Even with social media dominating the internet, email remains a fan favorite communication method. In fact, consumers and marketers prefer it.

Use this knowledge to your advantage to generate more leads and revenue online.

Why email marketing?

Email is one of the most cost-effective forms of marketing. For every dollar you spend on email marketing, you can potentially generate about $40. Not too shabby, huh?

It’s no wonder why 93% of B2B marketers distribute their content via email. 

Email marketing can be done weekly, monthly, quarterly. Heck, even daily. It really just depends on your content strategy and how frequently you’ve determined you need to keep your audience updated.

As we mentioned previously, acing email marketing can get you major results.

Some of the many benefits that come from email marketing include a targeted audience, measurable results and increased brand recognition.

We’ll cover how to create an email nurture series, how to design your emails and other tips on how you can create compelling emails your subscribers will actually want to read. AKA the absolute essentials for lead generation.

Now, let’s get to it.

Creating an email nurture series

When it comes to emailing your subscribers, you can’t just send out one email and think they’re going to convert. Same goes for blasting them with emails all at once. It’s just not going to work.

Instead, you need to craft a series of automated emails. Each email should have a specific purpose, build trust and nurture them down the sales funnel.

In case you need more convincing to set up an email nurture series, know that 87% of marketers use them to nurture their audiences. 

When someone opts in to your newsletter, the first email they should immediately get is a confirmation / welcome email along with whatever lead magnet you promised.

This email should also include instructions on how to make sure your emails are delivered to their inbox.

Advise new subscribers to:

  1. Check their spam folder
  2. Add your email to whitelist
  3. Expect emails from your domain name

From that point forward, each email should have one specific CTA to guide them along the buyer’s journey over time. These segmented emails will, of course, align with their actions. For example, someone who’s already converted shouldn’t be receiving the third email of your sequence that highlights the benefits of your product.

Your sequence could look something like this:

- Email 1 - Welcome / lead magnet
- Email 2 - Video - CTA schedule a call
- Email 3 - Highlight a portion of the guide
- Email 4 - New training / Invite to new webinar / Event
- Email 5 - New info
- Email 6 - Follow like social media

Adding value to each email will help build trust and let subscribers see why your product/service is worth their time and money.

Designing your emails

Ever find yourself checking your email and constantly deleting the same newsletter before you finally decide to opt-out?

Maybe there was an interest there at the beginning, but now, you just find the messages lackluster. They don’t catch your eye anymore. There’s nothing of value being offered. 

So, you unsubscribe.

You want to make sure that as you’re sending emails to your audience, that you design them so that they can’t help but click on them.

Design your emails for lead generation with:

  • A strong subject line
  • Concise copy
  • Images (but not too many!)
  • Social media sharing links / buttons
  • One call to action

Strong subject line 

Are your subject lines cutting through the noise?

A subject line is like a headline - it absolutely has to catch your readers’ attention so they read the rest of what you have to say!

As of 2016, it was reported that 47% of people open emails based on the subject line alone. We’re sure that number has increased since.

Not sure if your subject line is a hit or a miss? Test it using CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer tool. This will help you figure out how to craft a killer subject line.

Now, let’s say you have an awesome subject line, but what the? No one opened it!

You might wonder, ‘What happened?’

Well, if you’re encountering this problem, keep in mind that there are a list of words/phrases that automatically move your emails to the spam folder. 

An Email Tool Tester study showed that 16% of all emails never make it into the inbox. With the amount of spam that’s out there these days, inboxes flag anything they find suspicious of being spam.

Some words and phrases to avoid in subject lines include:

  • Win
  • Free
  • Congratulations
  • Act now
  • Make money

In addition, don’t use all caps or too much punctuation. And of course, try not to make any typos. Doing so will make your emails seem spammy. 

Concise copy

You never want your target audience to read your emails and think, ‘What’s the point?’

People’s time is precious. It’s important they don’t feel like you’re wasting it.

Get straight to the point with your message. No fluff. No marketing jargon. No big blocks of text.

When writing, be conversational. That makes you seem much more relatable in comparison to using the opportunity to cram big, smart words into your email. 

Similar to website copy, let readers know about the benefits, not the features, of your product/service. Again, you always want to answer the question of: ‘What’s in it for me?’ So naturally, you should be using more ‘you’ talk and less ‘we’ talk.

Same thing applies here as the subject line formatting. Steer clear of using all caps, too much punctuation and accidental typos.

And for the love of Pete, make sure you hit the enter button every now and again to break up your text.


According to a HubSpot report, 65% of users prefer image heavy emails compared to the 35% who prefer text heavy emails.

Incorporating imagery into your emails can undoubtedly strengthen the message you want to convey. These can be stock photos, infographics, or charts. 

Whatever they may be, they should serve a specific purpose.  

You can make your images work for you by making sure...

  • Your image isn’t too big or small
  • Your image is the right file type
  • Your image falls in line with your brand
  • You use the right amount of images
  • You set up the email display so your images aren’t hidden

Social media buttons

A GetResponse study showed that integrating these bad boys into your emails can increase email click-through rate by 158%. 

Whichever social media platforms your company is the most active on are the ones you should include. These can go in the header or footer.

Customize your social media buttons’ color, shape and size to align with your brand.

Call to action

What your email boils down to. Your call to action.

This is the one thing you want readers to do.

Do you want them to register for a webinar? Try a free trial of your product? Read your eBook?

Ensure readers do so by using compelling verbs i.e. download, register, read, attend.

Your CTA button should stand out in color and size. The text within the button should be short and sweet. 

Other tips on mastering email marketing

Want to add a few tricks up your sleeve for your email marketing endeavors? 

Of course you do!

Here are some ways you can create the most compelling emails so readers convert.


When you send what appears to be a mass email, there’s an emotional disconnect with the reader. Readers like feeling special. And personalizing your emails does just that. 

An Oberlo statistic reported that personalized email subject lines generate typically 50% higher open rates. 

It is also said that it generates a median ROI of 122%.


Mobile friendly

These days, more people are opening their emails on mobile than they are on desktop. According to a Google study, over 70% of people check their email in a mobile app.
Which is why we cannot stress the importance of optimizing your emails for mobile.

Disregarding mobile users means disregarding a large portion of your potential leads and customers.

Most email marketing services will have mobile responsive templates. Your emails will show up just fine as long as you put our email design suggestions to good use. 

Videos and animated content

Videos are dominating the internet. HubSpot reported that click rates can increase by 300% when you add videos to your email.

Videos are becoming an integral part of content strategy, and they should not be overlooked.

How to make your videos stand out in your email:

  • No autoplay
  • Include “video” in the subject line
  • Short duration (1-2 min)
  • Good quality (in content and video quality)
  • Customer testimonials
  • Clear call to action

Swipe files

Ever see an awesome subject line, email, or landing page? Use a swipe file! 

Swipe files let you save these to a folder to use as reference. That way, you can brainstorm with successful copy when it comes time for you to create content. 

You know how important it is for your emails to stand out, so why not take an approach that is proven to be a success?

Email tools we recommend

The help of the right tools can make the most mundane tasks easier.

For simple email marketing: MailChimp and Constant ContactBoth offer stunning email templates, easy navigation, detailed analytics and many integrations.

For advanced email marketing: ActiveCampaign

For ecommerce: Klaviyo

For a robust means of email marketing: HubSpot and Marketo

Email compliance

We’re a marketing company, so we know a thing or two about email compliance. And while we’re not lawyers by any means, we’re still going to remind you of the rules you should be mindful of while sending out emails. 

The last thing you want is to face any sort of consequences for failing to comply, whether that’s losing your audience’s trust or paying a hefty fine. (In case you’re curious, penalties could reach as high as $42,530 per email…) 


There are a few requirements that make up the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act. They are set in place to ensure senders are transparent, honest and accountability in their email marketing.

The U.S. CAN-SPAM Act requires senders to:

  • Be honest in their subject lines (AKA no clickbait)
  • Send from a real domain
  • Label emails as ads when applicable
  • Warn of explicit content
  • Include their company’s address
  • Allow users to opt-out
  • Accept responsibility for their company

For more details on what it means to be email complaint, click here

California GDPR

Data privacy


Email is a powerful and (still) relevant means of marketing. Setting up an email nurture sequence, designing emails for conversion and knowing how to optimize them can skyrocket your leads.

A Circle Research study stated that 42% of marketers believe email is one of their most effective lead generation channels.

Even after all these years, email has shown us how easily adaptable it is to whatever’s current. And one thing’s for sure: it’s not going anywhere.

If you’re new to email marketing, have no fear. Since email is here to stay, you have plenty of time to learn how to master it!

Note: Add a TS CTA: (“If you need help coming up with a better open rate for your email marketing, feel free to give one of our specialists a call”)


About the Author

Bernard Ablola

President, Think Strategy

Bernard Ablola is the founder of Think Strategy, where he helps clients formulate their online strategy and framework to ensure projects are kept on track. He is a frequent speaker on B2B lead generation and marketing automation. Prior to Think Strategy, Bernard earned his MBA in Entrepreneurship/International Studies from Seattle University and worked at Microsoft Corporation, managing multi-million search and display advertising campaigns for top tier clients. When he’s not embedding himself in learning, you can find him hiking or skateboarding throughout Southern California, walking his Pomsky (Google it) or finding THE spiciest Asian food in the city.