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Email Marketing Isn't Dead!


You’ve heard it before - email marketing is dead. Social media is the best way to reach your customers. Eblasts only end up in the trash folder, no one ever opens them.

Well, I’m here to tell you the opposite. Email marketing is alive and well, and, in fact, is crucial to any successful marketing plan! At noBul, we recommend all of our clients integrate email marketing into their customer outreach campaigns.  There’s a very good reason for this - they work. Check it out:

  • For every $1 spent on email marketing, the average return on investment is $44.25.
  • When marketed through email, consumers spend 138% more than people who don’t receive email offers.
  • A recent study concluded that email is almost 40 times better at acquiring new customers than Facebook and Twitter.  In fact, email conversion rates are on average three times higher than social media.
  • 44% of consumers made at least one purchase last year based on a promotional email they received.

Now, does this mean you should send daily emails with subject lines like DON’T WAIT - BUY TODAY!!!!!!!! Not at all. In fact (as you may have heard), the Canadian Anti-Spam Law (CASL) is trying to crack down on email blasts like these. This guide will show you how to create an effective email marketing campaign that complies with anti-spam legislation, and above all, builds and maintains a relationship with your customers.

Less is More

One of the leading reasons why contacts unsubscribe from an email list is because the emails are being sent too frequently. Although every brand wants to stay “top of mind” with their customer, this isn’t achieved by sending emails with little value. 

Ask yourself: what is the point of this eblast? What does our client take away from reading it? How will the client feel after reading it?

If you can’t answer those questions, chances are your reader will react with a click, drag, and drop to the trash folder. 

Instead, only send emails when you absolutely have something to offer. This can be a newsworthy company update (like a new CEO or a location change), a sale, a strong resource that you're providing for clients, or a contest.

Defining “newsworthy” is tricky business, so keep in mind, if it’s an update that doesn’t appeal to all of your stakeholders, it might be best to post it in the “News” section of your website, and give it a tweet or two.

Not only will this practice keep you on good terms with your customer, but it also increases the likelihood of compliance with CASL.

Become CASL Royalty

When CASL was first released, many of our clients called us with their questions. One of the more common things we were asked is whether sending emails for marketing purposes is even allowed after the legislation passed. The answer is YES...but with some very important exceptions.  Be sure to keep these tips in mind when creating your email campaign:

  • ALWAYS make unsubscribing easy for the reader.  This means having a clearly visible “unsubscribe” link in your email. You’ll also want to make the actual process simple to understand - no extra hoops to jump through.  You can have a few survey questions on your website to help you understand why the customer is unsubscribing, but I’d limit it there. 


  • ALWAYS keep a record of how you’ve obtained this customer’s contact info. Whether it’s a past transaction where they entered their email on your website, or a trade show where you obtained their business card. If you’re ever questioned how you obtained your contacts, you’ll need to be able to reasonably prove that this person has consented to receive communications from you.

Subject Lines Matter

So, what’s the first thing you see when you receive an email? The subject line (of course!) Creating a strong subject line is a deceptively tricky art to master. As a general rule of thumb: keep it short and sweet. Be concise, upbeat, and personal. Compare these two subject lines and think of which one you’d rather open:

  1. Hey David, Your 50% Off Promo Code is Inside!
  2. Up to 50% Selected Items

Unfortunately, there isn’t a magic formula to create subject lines that guarantee a 100% open rate. A great way to see what works best for your readers is through A/B testings in automation programs like MailChimp.

Measure, Report, Repeat

Like many marketing efforts, email campaigns often require lots of testing, analysis, and follow-up. Lucky for you, this doesn’t mean manually tracking every email sent out in an Excel sheet. There are so many fantastic programs out there (many of them with a free version) that can help you analyze this data. Here’s a list of our favourites:

1) MailChimp
Lets you design great looking email messages and track the success of all of your campaigns.  This is one of our favourites at noBul because it allows you to create different lists for subscribers and gives you easily digestible reports on the performance of different subject lines, sending times, etc.  

2) Google Analytics

A must for any web marketing campaign.  The amount of information Analytics provides is absolutely incredible.  This will give you great insight as to whether your email campaigns are sending customers to your website, how many conversions this has resulted in, and sales your campaign has generated. Google Analytics is one of the most full-featured platforms out there, and can integrate with many other applications (like MailChimp.)

3) CallTrackingMetrics

This tool allows you to track where your phone call leads are coming from, listen to recorded phone calls for customer service purposes, and track leads in CRM applications like SalesForce. We love CallTrackingMetrics because it gives us amazing insight as to how leads are handled with our clients and allows us to tweak our strategies where needed.

It’s important to remember that not all messaging needs to lead to an immediate conversion. Email marketing is a good way to let your customers and clients know what you’re up to, and more importantly, offer them something great. If the name of the game is building and maintaining relationships, then email marketing might be your new best friend.

As always, we love hearing about your experiences in web marketing. Share your thoughts, comments, or questions with us in the comments or on our social pages!

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