The 12 Best Practices for Email Marketing Campaigns That Drive Results

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Remember when direct mail marketing – physically sending brochures or advertising postcards to a person’s home – was the biggest game in the marketing world?

Seems like a lifetime ago. 

But, we do know that even as marketing strategies and technologies evolve and some fall by the wayside, email marketing remains one of the most effective tools for businesses to reach and engage their audience. 

Crafting a successful email marketing campaign for small businesses requires careful planning, strategic implementation, and continuous optimization. 

In this guide, we’ll delve into the best practices to help you develop a successful email marketing campaign that drives results which includes:

  • Understanding Your Audience & Building Your Email List
  • Crafting Compelling Subject Lines
  • Segmentation and Personalization
  • Create Valuable Content
  • Create Enticing Calls to Action
  • Subject Line Importance 
  • Design Mobile-Friendly Emails
  • Optimize Send Times
  • A/B Testing and Continuous Improvement
  • Ensuring Deliverability
  • Monitoring and Analyzing Metrics
  • Integrating Email with Other Channels

1 – Understanding Your Audience & Building Your Email List

Before diving into crafting emails, it’s crucial to understand your audience. 

Conduct thorough research to identify their preferences, behaviors, and pain points. 

Tailor your email content to resonate with your target audience, addressing their needs and interests directly.

To build your list, focus on organic growth by offering valuable opt-in incentives like discounts or exclusive content.

We’ve found that popping an email collection console on blog pages also helps organically build your list. Just make sure to offer some incentive in the pop-up console for a reason to join your list.

That could be offering discounts for ecommerce business or unique insights and inside information for services-based websites. Again, the user needs a reason to drop his email address into your collection console.

Whatever you do, avoid purchased lists, which often lead to spam complaints and low engagement. 

2 – Crafting Compelling Email Subject Lines

The subject line is the first thing recipients see, making it a critical component of your email campaign. Craft concise, compelling subject lines that pique curiosity and entice recipients to open your emails. 

Incorporate action words, personalization, and urgency to drive engagement. And don’t be afraid to use the many available AI writing tools like Gemini or Claude to help you make the subject lines clever and more prone to the user taking action.

customized email marketing

Making emails that are unique to your target audience will improve open rates and click through success

3 – Segmentation and Personalization

Not all subscribers are created equal.

Segmentation allows you to divide your email list into smaller, more targeted groups based on demographics, behavior, or preferences. 

This is also a good time to determine what type of audience your email is targeted to and understanding the difference between a marketing funnel vs customer journey.

Leverage segmentation to deliver highly personalized content that resonates with each segment of your audience. This allows you to send targeted emails that resonate with specific segments, boosting engagement and conversions.

Personalized emails have higher open and click-through rates compared to generic messages.

4 – Subject Line Importance 

The subject line is your email’s first impression. Craft clear, concise, and intriguing subject lines that pique your audience’s curiosity and entice them to open. 

Consider using questions, personalization, or a sense of urgency to stand out.

5 – Create Valuable Content

Deliver value to your subscribers by providing relevant, informative content in your emails. Whether it’s educational resources, exclusive offers, or product updates, ensure that your content adds value to the recipient’s inbox. 

Use a mix of text, images, and multimedia to keep your emails visually appealing and engaging.

People don’t want constant sales pitches.  

Provide valuable content that educates, entertains, or solves problems for your audience. This builds trust and establishes you as a thought leader in your industry. Aim for an 80/20 split, with 80% of emails offering value and 20% focused on promotions.

In our experience as a digital and email marketing agency, we often use the subject of a new blog post as a teaser in our clients’ monthly emails. This not only entices users to seek out new information on a topic they have opted in for, but shows your database that you are active and evolving in your expertise on your skillset.

6 – Create Enticing Calls to Action

Don’t leave your subscribers guessing. Include a clear call to action (CTA) in every email.  Whether you want them to visit your website, download a resource, or make a purchase, tell them exactly what you want them to do, and make it easy for them to take that action with a prominent CTA button.

At the same time, you never want an email to just be a blatant advertisement for a product or service. Hard sales will not only put many people off, but probably make them unsubscribe from your list.

The idea is to provide value whether monetarily with a coupon or discount code or intellectually with insights and info they haven’t seen a thousand times before.

7 – Design Mobile-Friendly Emails

With a significant portion of email opens happening on mobile devices, it’s imperative to design mobile-friendly emails. 

Optimize your email templates for mobile responsiveness, ensuring that they display properly across various screen sizes and devices. Use a single-column layout, large fonts, and clear CTAs to enhance the mobile user experience.

Mobile responsiveness is crucial. Design emails that render well on all devices. Keep your layout clean and easy to navigate. Use high-quality visuals, but don’t overload your email. Break up text with bullet points and clear headings for easy scanning.

8 – Optimize Send Times

Timing plays a crucial role in the success of your email campaigns. Experiment with different send times to determine when your audience is most active and engaged. 

Analyze metrics such as open rates, click-through rates, and conversions to identify the optimal send times for your emails.

Traditionally, it’s widely accepted that Monday (when people’s in boxes are packed from the weekend) and Fridays (when people are eager to get their weekend started) are the least effective times to send.

Historically, we’ve found that Tuesdays around 9-10am Pacific Time have produced the best results. Which is the plan we started with a current software expert witness client of ours.

Then one month, we were tight on a Tuesday deadline, so we decided to send on Thursday instead. We were (pleasantly) surprised to see the open rate increase by 2% and the click thru rate improve by nearly 1.3%.

Point is, don’t rely on the past – ABT should be the email marketing manifesto:

A – Always

B – Be

T – Testing

9 – A/B Testing and Continuous Improvement

And to that point, the testing continues in the concepts and presentation of your emails.

A/B testing allows you to compare different elements of your email campaigns, such as subject lines, content and Calls To Action. 

In layman’s terms, it’s basically testing two differently worded emails sent 50/50 to your total list

Experiment with various variables to identify what resonates best with your audience. Continuously analyze your results and iterate on your campaigns to improve performance over time.

10 – Ensuring Deliverability

To ensure that your emails reach your subscribers’ inboxes, focus on maintaining a good sender reputation. Follow best practices for email authentication, such as using Sender Policy Framework (SPF) protocols. 

Regularly clean your email list to remove inactive or invalid addresses and minimize the risk of being flagged as spam.

11 – Monitoring and Analyzing Metrics

Monitor key metrics to track the success of your email campaigns and gain insights into audience behavior. Track metrics such as open rates, click-through rates, conversion rates, and unsubscribe rates to gauge performance. Use this data to refine your strategies and optimize future campaigns for better results.

Don’t be afraid to experiment! 

A/B test different subject lines, CTAs, and design elements to see what resonates best with your audience. Track key metrics like open rates, click-through rates, and unsubscribe rates to identify areas for improvement and constantly refine your campaigns for maximum impact.

No matter what platform you use to send mail, all services like MailChimp or Constant Contact will offer plenty of analytical tools to improve your mail strategies with every send. 

12 – Integrating Email with Other Channels

Email marketing works best when integrated with other marketing channels such as social media, content marketing, and PPC advertising. Coordinate your messaging across channels to create a cohesive brand experience for your audience. 

Use email to drive traffic to your website, promote social engagement, and nurture leads through the sales and customer journey funnel.


Developing a successful email marketing campaign requires a strategic approach, creative execution, and continuous optimization. 

By following these best practices, you can create compelling email campaigns that resonate with your audience, drive engagement, and deliver measurable results.

Remember, successful email marketing is all about building relationships and providing value to your audience. 

So, craft compelling content, segment strategically, and prioritize permission-based growth. 

With a little planning and these best practices in mind, you can turn your email marketing efforts into a powerful tool for success.

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The Avita Group team boasts a collective experience of over 30 years in the industry led by Founder and CEO, Brad Weber, and has worked with a variety of multi-million dollar companies to help them improve their ROI, build better brand awareness, and mitigate negative online reviews.

Contact us for a free consultation to evaluate how we can transform and elevate your business.

People Also Ask

How often should I send marketing emails?

It’s essential to find the right balance between staying top-of-mind and avoiding inbox fatigue. Test different frequencies to see what works best for your audience, but aim to maintain consistency without overwhelming your subscribers.

What are some effective ways to grow my email list?

Offer incentives such as discounts, exclusive content, or giveaways to encourage sign-ups. Leverage social media, website pop-ups, and gated content to capture email addresses from interested prospects.

Should I use purchased email lists for my campaigns?

Avoid using purchased email lists, as they often contain outdated or low-quality contacts. Focus on growing your list organically through opt-in methods to ensure that your emails reach engaged and receptive recipients.

How can I improve email deliverability?

Focus on building a positive sender reputation by sending relevant, engaging content to an active and permission-based list. Monitor your email deliverability metrics regularly and address any issues promptly to maintain inbox placement.

What role does email automation play in successful campaigns?

Email automation allows you to streamline your workflows, deliver timely messages, and nurture leads effectively. Use automation to send welcome emails, follow-up sequences, abandoned cart reminders, and personalized drip campaigns.

How can I measure the ROI of my email marketing efforts?

Track key metrics such as conversion rate, revenue generated, and cost per acquisition to measure the ROI of your email campaigns. Calculate the lifetime value of email subscribers to understand their long-term impact on your business.