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The 3 email marketing areas most B Corps and impact-driving brands struggle with

Updated: Jun 10

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In the past two months, I got a peek under the hood of 8 brands (eCommerce, B Corps, and personal brands) with anywhere between a 2-digit to a 5-digit subscriber count.


And even though the challenges, objectives, and audiences of each brand are unique to them, all of them have one thing in common:


Email marketing really scares them. 


Yes, even the brands with a well-put-together front.


It doesn't feel like their other marketing channels. It feels heavier, more complex, too serious. Like the stakes are impossibly high. 


If you’re reading this and feel the same, I want to normalize the fear of email marketing. You’re not alone in this.


There are many ways to address this channel as a part of your marketing mix if it’s a priority - 


From putting together a few automations that serve your customers (low-hanging fruit) to doing that plusbuilding a network of email ops, including regular newsletters, automations, and integrations with other systems and teams.


(The latter is what I do with my clients, and will show you what it looks like and what it can achieve in a couple of weeks!)


But where do you even start rectifying your email program?


Here are 3 areas that I see a lot of brands struggling with and 10 questions I tend to ask the ones in charge:


Segmentation:

  • What do we want to learn about our subscribers, and what kind of zero/first-party data do we want to collect from them?

  • Does it make sense to use segments that are considered “best practices”, like most engaged andleast engaged (a very general example), or do we need a different approach?

  • How can we allow our subscribers to self-segment and/or jump between segments to provide them with the inbox experience they want and deserve?

Automated flows:

  • How do our subscribers get into the flow? What’s the entry point? (Pop-up on your website, a landing page they got to after seeing an ad, etc.)

  • What’s the goal of each particular sequence? 

  • Are there points where subscribers trigger another automation or “throw” themselves out of a sequence? (because they achieved a goal or clicked on something that indicated that.)

  • At which stage of awareness do most subscribers step into the flow? Are they familiar with their challenges/our brand/our solution?


Networking:

  • How do we collect feedback from our subscribers effortlessly and continuously?

  • How do we take that feedback and “feed” it back into our email strategy and ops?

  • What are we hearing the most from our subscribers (that could also come from a different team, like the customer experience), and how can we address those issues or even prevent them ahead of time with our emails?


Bear in mind that these questions only scratch the surface.


But that’s a good start.


Once you wrap your head around those areas, what you’re trying to achieve with your emails, and what you already know vs. what you want to know more about your audience - you can move on to other areas of your email strategy.

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