This blog post is all about examples of great emails—emails that are so effective, inspiring, and compelling that readers couldn’t resist the urge to engage with them.
Each email is an opportunity to generate leads, further educate your prospects, close customers, and support your evangelists. It’s a chance to move the reader out of their inbox and onto a path to read more, subscribe, sign-up or buy.
Want learn more about how to send great emails? Register for our free Email Marketing Certification course.Email marketing can be an incredibly valuable communication channel for your business. To drive real results—results measured in dollars and cents—an email marketer has to send emails that add value to the readers and benefit their own business.
The three emails below were all sent by HubSpot customers and achieved OUTSTANDING results. There will be context on why each email was so successful individually, but it’s worth pointing out two things that all of them have in common:
They were sent to a high-segmented, targeted list:Inbound is all about the combination of content and context. It’s not enough to write a great email—it has to delivered to someone who cares about the message.
Sixty-three percent of customers surveyed strongly agreed with the statement: “Most of the marketing emails I receive include no content or offers that are of interest to me.” Your leads and customers are people, and people want to be marketed to AS PEOPLE, not as a nameless, faceless number.
Think about it this way: When is the last time you saw someone driving while talking on their phone? Or even worse, texting? People don’t even pay attention to the road when they are driving, anymore, even though it’s illegal in many states to be on your phone while driving. So with their life on the line, people are breaking the law by ignoring what is going on right in front of their faces. It’s a scary thought, but a true one.
To expect people to pay attention to your emails just because you spent a lot of time crafting them is naive at best, and detrimental to your business at worst.
There is a clear goal:People are busy. When an email appears in a reader’s inbox, they should know exactly why they received the email, how it can add value to their life, and what action they are supposed to take.
The foundation of any successful email send is a good goal. You can’t write a great email if you don’t know why you’re sending it. A great email promotes a clear action, like registering for a webinar, downloading a whitepaper or subscribing to your blog. Each part of your email should support the primary goal you select.
I know that sounds obvious, but I can’t tell you how many marketers I’ve talked with who send out emails because, “That’s just what their company does every month.” The email examples below add value, they don’t ask for it.
Example email no. 1
Company: Senior Housing News
- What they do: They publish news about the senior housing industry
- Purpose of the email: Deliver the link to a download after a form submission
- Subject line: 3 Major Senior Living Provider Trends Download
- Open Rate: 88%
- Click Rate: 84%
What makes this email great:
I chose this example to convey how little you need to create a successful email. Sometimes short and sweet is the answer. Someone requested a whitepaper and this email delivers it. No nonsense. Some thing this email does really well:
- It possesses a clear, simple subject line, suggesting something valuable within.
- It’s only sent when triggered by user activity, so the send automatically sends itself.
- Their logo isn’t distracting but provides enough context for the reader to remember who sent the email.
- It’s personalized. To quote Dale Carnegie, “Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language”
Example email no. 2
Company: Gig Masters
- What they do: Connect party planners & hosts with the perfect vendors to celebrate all of life's special moments.
- Purpose of the email: Encourage contacts to submit a survey about their experience using Gig Masters.
- Subject line: Hey , please tell us about your wedding bookings!
- Open Rate: 81%
- Click Rate: 44%
What makes this email great:
There are quite a few similarities between this email and the first example. Notable unique qualities contributing to its success include:
- The subject line explains why they are receiving the email. “Please tell us about your wedding bookings” leaves zero confusion about why the reader received the email.
- Gig Masters uses great copy to show that they care about their users input. They use the subject line, explain that they would “love to get input” and finish the email by saying “Thank you so much for your time.”
- It comes from a real person (I’ve blurred out the sender). By having it come from a real person and not a faceless company, you assure the reader that your feedback isn’t going into the virtual garbage can.
- They are providing real value. In return for the feedback, people who submit their survey responses will be entered into a raffle for a $50 Amazon gift card. The feedback they receive on that survey is no doubt worth 10x more than that gift card. It’s a smart investment and evens out the value proposition for both the company and the reader.
- The CTA enforces the goal of the email. Because the CTA uses such clear and descriptive language, it means that a reader could blink once and know exactly what they are supposed to do with this email. It’s a great example of what is called “Conversion-driven design,” which means that every part of the email should be designed to drive people towards converting on the goal of the email.
Example email no. 3
- What they do: Timeless apparel and accessories for the modern woman made with the most premium materials and finest craftsmanship.
- Purpose of the email: Give shoppers exclusive access to a new product
- Subject line: Exclusive Early Access. Fall 2015: Pebbled Leather Refresh
- Open Rate: 86%
- Click Rate: 63%
What makes this email great:
This email is a bit different because it’s an ecommerce email. That’s a good thing—it shows that regardless of the business model the best practices of sending an email remain the same. Crisp copy, a clear CTA, and a great subject line will always work. Here are some other things unique to this email that are well-executed:
- They use exclusivity to promote curiosity, which leads to opens and clicks. The subject line calls out the “exclusive, early access,” and the CTA copy says “shop early access.” Who wouldn’t want to at least take a peek?
- It’s descriptive. Don Draper would be proud.
- Pay attention to the extra work that images do in a product-focused email. The reader gets to see the full product as well as the texture. While images can be distracting in B2B emails, when advertising a consumer good images help to sell the product.
There you have it. Three great emails that delivered incredible value to both the business and the reader. If you’re looking for a recipe to cook up email marketing success, look no further than the principles that made these examples successful.