Complete guide to email marketing

Complete guide to email marketing

What is email marketing?

To promote your products and services through email is known as email marketing.

Email marketing is popular since it is the most personal form of marketing. In fact email marketing is said to be 70% more effective than other marketing mediums.

It is also the least invasive form of marketing as it is dependent upon permission. You can only send emails to a person after his gives you permission to send him emails. Hence, email marketing is also called permission marketing.

Vendors usually obtain email marketing permissions from customers whenever they buy something from them, during check out or through a simple pop up placed in their website that asks them to subscribe to their updates.

Once permission is obtained the vendor is free to interact with the customer through this very personal form of communication.

Since email has become an inseparable part of a person’s life, emails are generally opened and this in turn increases the effectiveness of email marketing.

The average industry acceptable open rate of email marketing falls between 20 to 25%, which is a pretty good metric looking at the fact that email marketing is an inexpensive form of marketing.

Why email marketing?

Be it a blog, a company an e-commerce store, each and every business cannot overlook the effectiveness of email marketing.

Companies need email marketing to connect with their customers, make sales and promote their products.

Email marketing is a very neat form of communication that almost every company uses to further their marketing efforts.

Types of email

1. ‘Welcome’ Email

Whenever you buy from a new website or subscribe to a new blog you get a welcome email. This welcome mail is a good point of marketing as it reassures the customer that his registration is confirmed, it sets ground for the new mails that he will be receiving from you and you can also put some little promotional material in this email highlighting next steps

2. Dedicated Emails

Dedicated emails contain one single communication. It could be a new product launch, webinar registration or any kind of communication.

It is characterized by a strong call to action with big shiny buttons that are designed to entice some action from the user.

Given above is a form of dedicated email.

Can you see the prominent call to action?

3. Newsletter Emails

This is a newsletter that I receive daily from brand equity. It covers their daily top news and love to read it. That’s a great thumbs up for brand equity for their brand-building efforts.

Newsletters as the name suggest give updates, latest news and tips to your email subscribers.

They are helpful in keeping you connected with your audience.

If done properly it can help you a lot in your brand building exercise.

4. Digest Emails

Digest emails may contain more information than a newsletter. For example, a newsletter may share the top daily news, whereas, a digest can show you the top viewed articles for the month for a blog.

They are also good as some readers may prefer digests to newsletters due to their low frequency and summarised curated information.

Digests and newsletters they look more or less the same, hence I do not feel the need to insert a picture here.

5. Lead Nurturing Emails

Lead nurturing emails are a well planned series of emails that you send to subscribers that have a single end goal.

Let me explain you this with an example:

  1. You go to an online health blog and you subscribe to its updates.
  2. The blog sends you welcome email.
  3. Next week the blog sends you, “Top 7 health articles you would not like to miss,” email to you.
  4. Next week following the blog sends you an email titled, “The best articles on women health care for the week,” email to you.
  5. This continues for two more weeks.
  6. In the week that follow the blog shows you pictures of its exclusive diet program taking people who have lost 10 kgs in 5 days following this diet with no side effects.
  7. The following week he shows you their stories through email.
  8. The following week he sends a dedicated email and asks you to buy that program that only costs 10 dollars.
  9. Would you go ahead and buy it?

Let us a take a simple scenario in which the blog has a list of 1 lakh people and used 10 weeks to nurture its prospects. Let us assume that only 5% of his loyal following bought that diet program. That brings the total income of that blog to 5000 X 10 = 50000 dollars and that too in just 10 weeks.

Thats a fine number ain’t it? Thats why I love lead nurturing emails and the best part about them is that you can automate the process so that you can just keep on counting the money while the email automation program does all the hard wor

6. Transactional Emails

A Simple Example of a Transactional Email

Transactional emails are triggered every time a customer completes a measurable outcome on your website. It could be a new product bought from your website or a subscription to a webinar.

Transactional email confirms your transaction with the customer and may contain receipts order number or a promotion to a similar product that can be bought by the customer.

Email marketing tools

There are a lot of email marketing tools out there and I would like to cover them in two parts.

Not so cost effective options:

Getresponse: Not so easy to use as MailChimp and does not come compatible with a lot of integrations. But still if you want to start with email marketing and take a taste of what is it, then I would recommend using this tool. Mailchimp is too harsh on new comers as it comes with a lot of validations before you can actually send and make some real email marketing campaigns.

MaiChimp: Extremely easy to use like applying butter on bread. Integrations are fab! It can be easily integrated with facebook too for marketing. But as I said before not recommended for new comers as it has a lot of validation issues before you can make some real email marketing campaigns.

Cost Effective (Self Hosted) and Long Term

I call these solutions long term because you can send unlimited emails through them by subscribing them just one time and the costs are also very less. Though they may lack in some features but cover all major functionalities of an email marketing tool.

Sendy uses Amazon SES to send emails.

It is a really very affordable email marketing tool that costs $59 one time fee and then amazon charges $1 for every 10000 emails that you send. That is really very cheap compared to all email marketing platforms.

Sendy Comparison With Other Marketing Tools- Credit

In the latest version of Sendy, they have introduced setting a custom domain for the brands and the following features.


MailWizz is another self hosted email marketing tool. It can be added and run on any web hosting platform.

Mailwhizz comes with a one time fee of $69 and after that you can send email through any SMTP server or you can use other well known service providers such as Amazon SES.


Mailtrain is a free self hosted email marketing tool.

It is also a great tool that is usually suited for big email lists. After installing you can use Amazon SES or any other SMTP server suitable to you.


Through NeuvoMailer you can manage unlimited subscribers and mailing lists. It also supports trigger and drip campaigns and also lead generation email campaigns.

Neuvomailer also has a landing page feature that helps you to build awesome landing pages for your email marketing campaigns.

The best part?

You can have the tool for a lifetime with just paying a one-time license fee.

Dada Mail

Dada Mail is free and open source and self hosted.

Through Dada Mail you send emails through sendmail, SMTP or Amazon SES. Dada mail also has a rich text editor that helps you to make beautiful emails. Email creation also has HTML support.

You can also access email analytics through Dada Mail such as click-throughs, unsubscribed, bounce rate, etc. Bulk emailing is also supported.


Mautic is a totally free self hosted email marketing platform.

It has an extremely active open source community. You can use mautic to create landing pages, forms, email marketing campaigns. Furthermore, it is very easy to install.

Email Lists

Creating email lists is one of the most fundamental part of creating email marketing campaigns. Before sending your emails you need to create a list of recipients who will then continue to receive your further email communications.

Growing Your Email List

Building your own email list is hard and to continuously keep adding emails to that list is harder. Hence, we need to continuously do something so that subscribers keep on increasing and so does your business.

Furthermore, it is also important to keep your current subscribers engaged so that they keep opening your emails and keep in touch with you and your promotional activities.

Given below are a few tips to increase your email database:

  1. If you are creating great email content every day then you can be rest assured that your current subscribers will forward your emails to their friends, family and acquaintances and keep growing your email list automatically. To accomplish this add a simple CTA button such as ” Email to a friend” in all your emails to encourage more and more email sharing.
  2. Give then something for free in return for their email ID’s. Create some highly sought for content such as ” Ten ways to self repair your car” or ” How to fall in love back again” sort of guide and give them for free in return for their email ID’s
  3. Start a contest and enroll them while taking their email ID’s. Lure more and more of them with a great price if they win, host a give away.
  4. If you can create a useful tool then you can let them use it for free in return for their email ID’s.
  5. Create a social media ad campaign and create lead generation offers. Promote your ebook, free course or any resource of value in exchange for their email ID’s. If you want to learn to advertise on Facebook, check out my complete guide for Facebook marketing.
  6. Use social media pages to promote your lead gen offers organically.
  7. Use your website to capture more and more visitors to subscribe to your emails. You can do this by embedding subscription forms on your website which the user can fill if he wants to receive emails from you.
  8. Partner with someone and have him sponsor your content on his emails. This will not only help drive more traffic to your blog but also help you get more subscribers.
  9. If you have a physical business then start collecting your customer feedbacks and make them fill their email IDs in the form.
  10. Use Google Ads to promote your lead generation campaigns. If you want to learn Google Ads then go to this complete tutorial on Google Ads that I have written.

Lead Nurturing

Once you’ve provided valuable content to your readers and converted some of them into leads, it’s time to nurture those leads so they can become opportunities and can be taken over by your sales team. After all, at least half of the new leads you generate are probably not ready to buy from you. Nurturing emails help you stay connected to the leads you collect that aren’t ready to buy from you yet, and build up trust until they’re ready. Follow the below tips to improve your lead nurturing campaigns.

Automate your welcome and thank-you emails.

To start nurturing your sales leads, automate that welcome message and thank you and then begin nurturing them with appropriate nurturing emails.

Let your new email subscribers know what they can expect from your site (a weekly or monthly update, for instance), and give them a clue as to what else is in the works, such as product discounts, new ebooks, and free tools.

Additionally, you can include a list of your most popular articles or pages in this email or mention that this list will be on its way tomorrow or within a few days. The idea is to keep your new subscribers interested and engaged from the get-go.

Send different emails to people in different stages

Another way to nurture your email list is by sending different messages to readers in different stages of the buyer’s journey.

Imagine you’ve created a five-email course using an automated workflow. After viewing your email metrics, you might notice a few readers drop off in engagement after the first few emails, while others breeze through the entire series eagerly.

Those in the latter group have progressed to the next stage in your funnel, which makes them a perfect segment to focus your attention on. These readers are more interested in what you have to offer, so they’ll be more inclined to pay attention when special incentives and discounts are sent their way.

Common Email Marketing Metrics

  • Bounce Rate
    • Hard Bounce: Invalid, closed and wrong email addresses.
    • Soft Bounce: Temporary problems with email such as inbox full, etc.
  • Delivery Rate: Percentage of emails delivered to the recipient inbox.
  • List growth rate: New emails added/ Original list size
  • Click Through Rate: No of clicks/ No. of email delivered.
  • Email Sharing: Percentage of people sharing your email.
  • Conversion Rate: No of conversions/ No of clicks.
  • Revenue Per Email Sent: Total revenue generated/ Total no of emails sent
  • Open Rate: Opened/ Sent
    • Gets reported only if images are opened. So sometimes wrong data is reported.
    • Not a good performance metric.

Overview of Campaign Statistics

  • Recipients
    Number of subscribers the campaign was sent to.
  • Delivered
    Date and time the campaign completed sending from MailChimp servers.
  • Open rate
    Percentage of successfully delivered campaigns that registered as an open.
  • Click rate
    Percentage of successfully delivered campaigns that registered a click.
  • List average for opens and clicks 
    Average percentage of opens or clicks on previous campaigns sent to this list.
  • Industry average for opens and clicks 
    Average percentage of opens or clicks for campaigns in the selected industry set for your account.
  • Opened
    Number of recipients that opened this campaign any number of times.
  • Clicked
    Number of recipients that clicked any tracked link any number of times in this campaign.
  • Bounced
    Number of recipients that registered as a hard or soft bounce.
    • Hard Bounce: Invalid, closed and wrong email addresses.
    • Soft Bounce: Temporary problems with email such as inbox full, etc.
  • Unsubscribed
    Number of subscribers that opted out of your list using the unsubscribe link in this campaign.
  • Total opens
    Total number of times the campaign was opened by recipients. This count includes multiple opens from individual recipients.
  • Successful deliveries
    The number of recipients that didn’t hard or soft bounce on this campaign.
  • Clicks per unique opens
    Percentage of recipients that registered as an open who also clicked a link in your campaign.
  • Total clicks
    Total number of times tracked links were clicked by recipients. This count includes multiple clicks from individual recipients
  • Forwarded
    Number of times the campaign was forwarded using the Forward to a Friend form. This stat considers forwards only through the Forward to a Friend form and is not able to detect when a subscriber uses the forwarding function in their email program.
  • Forward opens
    Number of times the campaign was opened by someone who was forwarded the campaign using a Forward to a Friend form.
  • Abuse reports
    Number of recipients that reported your email as spam. Subscribers that report a campaign as spam are automatically unsubscribed from your list.
  • Last opened
    The most recent instance of a recipient opening the campaign.
  • Last clicked
    The most recent instance of a recipient clicking a tracked link in the campaign.
  • 24-hour performance
    A graph detailing subscriber activity (opens and clicks) for the first 24 hours after the campaign was sent.
  • Top links clicked
    The URLs that were clicked the most in the campaign.
  • Subscribers with most opens
    Subscribers that opened the campaign the most times.
  • Social performance
    Provides a bird’s eye view of how well your campaign is doing across different social media outlets.
  • Top locations
    Displays where in the world your subscribers are opening your campaigns.

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