How many emails did you get today? Based on the latest email marketing statistics, the average person receives more than 120 emails every single day. And, if you’re like most people, you delete those emails without opening, reading, or even unsubscribing. If you’re an email marketer, you’re probably always looking for new ways to engage your audience that will actually draw them in and get them to engage or buy. That’s why we’ve pulled together this list of email marketing campaign examples that we just love.
Because, when it comes right down to it, despite all of the email duds we get every single day, we still love connecting with brands via email. If we didn’t, email wouldn’t have such a great return on investment (ROI). And return it does! According to HubSpot’s State of Marketing 2020, email marketing has an ROI of 4200%. That means for every $1 you spend on email marketing, marketers get back an average of $42.
But you can just send any old email and expect to get that same ROI. Your emails have to be eye-catching and creative, really inspiring your subscribers to take action. The email marketing campaign examples we’re going to share here are emails that do just that. Use these email marketing campaign examples to guide your own email marketing campaigns and you’ll be doing just fine.
Before we get into our email marketing campaign examples, there are a couple of terms it might be important to understand: email marketing campaign and email drip campaign.
What Is an Email Marketing Campaign?
An email marketing campaign is a single email or group of emails that you send to your subscribers. Email marketing campaigns can include special offers, discounts, and promotions, or useful content. The purpose of any email marketing campaign, though, is to nurture lasting relationships between your brand and your subscribers.
What Is an Email Drip Campaign?
An email drip campaign is a type of email marketing campaign that uses automated messages. The emails in drip campaigns are pre-written and then “dripped” out over days or weeks on a preset schedule. They’re most commonly used as welcome emails, customer onboarding, cart abandonment, and other series, but they can also be set up to send based on certain triggers like purchases or opt-ins.
Email drip campaigns make email marketing a lot easier since you just have to write the emails and set them up on a schedule instead of sending each email manually—the campaign essentially runs on its own.
15 Email Marketing Campaign Examples We Love
Now that you’re familiar with the different types of emails we’re going to be talking about, let’s get into our list of email marketing campaign examples you can use to inspire your own email campaigns. As always, you should consider your own audience and what they want to see from you before just adapting one of these email marketing campaign examples for your own email list. But these examples will give you a great starting point.
Did you know that the average open rate for welcome emails is 50%–60% (Constant Contact)? Welcome emails are your first chance to make a good impression on new subscribers so it’s important to take the time to get them right. We really love the idea of sending a welcome email series, sometimes called an indoctrination series, that brings new subscribers “into the fold,” providing them with manageable pieces of information about your brand over time instead of doing a huge info dump in a single email.
As far as welcome emails go, Headspace does a great job:
At the beginning of this email marketing campaign example, you can see that Headspace is reaffirming the subscriber’s decision to subscribe to Headspace, pointing out that subscribers are “well on their way to a happier and healthier life.” The email also includes links that will take subscribers to specific landing pages that are designed to increase the value to subscribers and could easily be used as just the first email in a welcome series that teaches subscribers about what Headspace has to offer them.
In this email marketing campaign example, Netflix is reaching out to subscribers who haven’t logged in for a while (probably just a few days to a week). Using dynamic content for email personalization, Netflix is able to send these emails to all visitors who haven’t logged in—the show and suggestions will change based on each subscriber’s account. So, while this email specifically references the series Marcella, an email to another user might instead be for The Great British Baking Show.
The email barely has any copy in it at all; Netflix lets the visuals do most of the communicating. This gives the email a sleek, streamlined appearance that’s quite appealing and doesn’t take anything away from what Netflix wants the recipient to do: come back and spend more time on Netflix.
Want to send dynamic content, too? Check out this list of email marketing services to find the right one for you!
ModCloth’s emails are always beautiful to look at, and this email marketing campaign example is no different. In this Halloween campaign, ModCloth has used some really fun wordplay in their email copy. This is a great indication that ModCloth knows what their email subscribers want to see from the brand.
With headlines like “Witch, please” and the fun changing on the word “boutique” to “boo-tique,” ModCloth is showing that they are a fun, frisky brand and even with the black and white colors dominating the images, the email still pops. Overall, it’s a super fun way to advertise the brand’s seasonal line.
Here is another email marketing campaign example for a welcome email, this time from the outdoor lifestyle brand Patagonia. This is the first email that new subscribers get after signing up for their email list.
Right away, Patagonia sets expectations for subscribers so they understand what subscribers will get in their emails from the brand, namely product highlights, sale announcements, store events, and environmental action alerts. In addition, subscribers get a warm “welcome to the family,” which goes a long way toward increasing brand affinity.
Patagonia also offers reassurances throughout their email, from letting subscribers know that the brand won’t share their email addresses to their “Ironclad Guarantee” that closes out the email.
In this email marketing campaign example from PayPal, subscribers are encouraged to use the “checkout with PayPal” feature and are shown the benefits of using that feature. It’s a simple email with minimal copy that focuses on the benefits rather than details about the feature itself. It’s all presented in an easily skimmable format with soothing colors.
You can always count on Birchbox to send great emails and this email marketing campaign example is no exception. The copy and image included work perfectly together and create a sense of playfulness. In case you’re not aware, the paper object featured here is a paper fortune teller game that many a pre-teen and teen have used in their lives. It’s an interesting, fun, and quirky way to engage subscribers and get them excited at the prospect of which free prize they could get with their first Birchbox order.
Who doesn’t love saving money? In this email marketing campaign example from Uniqlo, the brand is sharing a pricing change with subscribers who liked a specific item. This type of email can be automated based on website activity using cookies. In this case, the subscriber has clearly shown interest in the sweater in this email, either by going to the product page or even adding the item to their cart (but not completing the purchase). This is a great way to increase revenue!
8. Would You Rather
Surveys are a great way to get your subscribers involved and engaged in your email marketing. Would You Rather also uses fun graphics to add interest to their largely text-based emails. These emails are very niche and very on-brand for Would You Rather, but you can use interactive emails to ask your subscribers for feedback, testimonials, and reviews, too. And don’t be afraid to make it a little weird if that fits in with your brand!
It’s a great practice to send your subscribers anniversary or birthday emails to let them know that you’re thinking about them. These emails can be entirely automated, making them an easy way to increase brand affinity and keep your brand at the front of your subscribers’ minds. This email marketing campaign example from Mint by Intuit is fun and friendly. And, perhaps most importantly, doesn’t ask the subscriber to do anything or buy anything. They can just appreciate the gesture, enjoy their warm feelings about your brand, and move on with their day.
10. Artifact Uprising
Artifact Uprising is a printing service that lets users turn their photos into printed photo gifts, books, and more. With this email marketing campaign example, Artifact Uprising not only lets subscribers know where they stand on an important social issue, but they use this as an opportunity to put their money where their mouth is. This email campaign was designed as part of the Black Lives Matter movement and features a curated selection of photos to “uplift and invest in Black visibility.”
While this could have been used as a tactic by Artifact Uprising to simply generate more sales for their brand, they took a solid stand by committing to donating 100% of the profits from this campaign to organizations for Black advancement. If you’re planning a campaign around a social issue, this is the way to do it. Plus, the imagery included in the email is simply stunning.
11. The Hustle
If you’re not familiar with The Hustle’s email marketing, get familiar. They have some of the best email copywriting we’ve seen. In this email marketing campaign example, we’re sharing a welcome email from The Hustle. The email is text-based and quite long but the copy is so compelling that it’s not a drag to read all the way through. We love the way they let subscribers know that they’re honored to be trusted with the email address and the hilarious story of what happens in the office when you sign up not only shows off The Hustle’s brand personality but also serves the purpose of introducing you to some key players on their team.
The email ends with a subtle call to action asking subscribers to share on social media that carries on with the story in the main body of the email.
Harry’s is a fun brand and that comes through in their email marketing. The email marketing campaign example we’re looking at today is a promotional email in which they’re selling “mystery products” for $5. In this email, Harry’s is using an eye-catching GIF to pull subscribers’ attention and get them to read the email copy to find out what’s up.
We love GIF marketing! They’re incredibly effective and grabbing and holding attention but, oddly, more than 20% of brands never use GIFs in email marketing.
GIF aside, this type of email is a great promotion to use when you have surplus stock or a slow-moving product you want to get rid of without having to take a huge hit to your bottom line.
Milestone messages are another great way to keep your brand at the front of subscribers’ minds and nurture important relationships. The email marketing campaign example we’re using here is from the consumer electronics company, Withings. In these emails, Withings sends a note of congratulations to subscribers when they hit certain milestones like walking a certain number of steps, miles, or other goals and gives the subscriber a fun badge for their efforts.
These messages encourage users to continue using your products so they hit more milestones and are entirely automated, making them a ridiculously easy marketing tool.
14. Product Hunt
Product Hunt is an online platform used for discovering and sharing new products. With their email newsletter, subscribers get regular communication from the Product Hunt team. Regular communication with your subscribers is important to keep them engaged. No matter what frequency you choose to send emails—be it daily, weekly, monthly, or on another schedule entirely—it’s important to stick with your pattern.
But it’s not just enough to send promotion after promotion.
One of the reasons Product Hunt has made it onto our list of email marketing campaign examples is because their emails are filled with information that doesn’t just push Product Hunt but offers additional value to readers. Each of their daily emails includes their “top hunts” from the previous day as well as highlighting a specific topic—in this example, it’s podcasts.
15. Christy Harrison
Sometimes, you just have subscribers that aren’t engaging. While you’re constantly encouraged to grow your email list by just about every marketing expert out there, it’s important to know that inactive subscribers can actually hurt your email marketing strategy. If your email list is cluttered with people who aren’t opening, reading, and clicking your emails, your deliverability is going to suffer. That’s why it’s important to keep your email list clean and up-to-date.
Anti-diet registered dietitian, certified intuitive eating counselor, and journalist, Christy Harrison, does a great job of that with her re-engagement email drip campaign:
The email itself is a simple, text-based email. The email subject line grabs your attention with a question, “Is This Goodbye?” and the email body acknowledges that you as a subscriber haven’t been engaged in the last few emails. Importantly, Christy Harrison then gives you the option to simply click a link if you want to stay on the list.