What is Email Marketing and How Does it Work? Definition and Best Practices

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With this guide, we will tell you what email marketing is and how it can be used to promote your company’s products. According to a DMA, 2019 survey, Email marketing gives companies a high return on investment, the average figure being $42 for every $1 spent. For every company with a digital presence, email marketing should definitely be a key component of its digital marketing strategy.

There’s a good possibility that you might have doubts regarding email marketing, and be confused as to where to begin from. This is understandable since email marketing is a vast topic, and it’s quite easy to get yourself lost searching and researching it. 

Since it’s better to take time and learn a concept well rather than rushing through it only to unlearn and relearn later, we recommend you to learn about email marketing before setting up your first email marketing campaign. This will not only ensure better results for you but also save you valuable time. So let’s start learning Email Marketing.

  • Understanding email marketing
  • Different types of marketing emails
  • Promoting products through email marketing
  • Importance of email in the 21st century

Understanding email marketing

When you send a business-related email message to your email subscribers who have consented to receive email messages from you, with an aim to promote your products or services, it is referred to as email marketing.

Email marketing aims to let people know your brand, generate leads, increase sales, and also build a community of followers around your brand through continual email engagement.

The focus of contemporary email marketing has shifted from one-size-fits-all bulk mails to customized, and consent-based emails. 

Different types of emails marketing 

Emails can either be categorized into 2 types- 

  • Promotional Email
  • Informational Email

Each of these email types fulfills a specific purpose in pursuit of the buyers.

Promotional emails

Email marketing campaigns that are launched with an aim to promote a product or service are called Promotional Emails. Promotional emails may promote a special bumper offer, a new product launch, or a webinar. Typically, an email campaign could comprise 3 – 10 emails dispatched over a period of a few days or weeks.  

Promotional emails consist of a clear and unambiguous call-to-action, which is also called CTA in short. The CTA is the specific action you want the reader of the email to take. This may be a visit to a page, signing up for a newsletter, or a product purchase. 

Usually, such emails are sent in tune with business requirements, which may be expanding reach, generating leads, or increasing sales. 

Companies use special marketing tools to send such targeted and personalized emails. You can search for more information about one of these services here. You can easily automate your email marketing campaign and track important data with such tools.

Informational emails

Informational emails are sent with an aim to inform your target audience regarding an event, some news, product use case, etc. Informational emails are of different types as discussed under.

Newsletters: As suggested by the name, a newsletter sends across any news related to your business to your target audience. This news may be about a new achievement of your business, new product features or to convey a survey result related to your business.

Newsletters are sent as per a pre-set schedule, and they help in creating and maintaining a regular connection with your followers. It also helps forge trust between the customers/subscribers and your brand. The periodicity of the newsletter may be weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly. 

Here’s a piece of interesting information regarding newsletters. Newsletters shouldn’t just focus on news. According to email guru Ann Handley, newsletters can be perceived as an opportunity to connect with your subscribers through a one-to-one letter. 

So, keep in mind to fill your newspaper with content that the subscriber finds interesting. In other words, a newsletter gives you an opportunity to bring to the reader’s notice insights, musings, suggestions– anything that does the highest value addition for your audience. 


Email marketing can also be deployed effectively to make announcements related to your business. Email is considered as the most effective way to let customers know of your company’s announcements, new product releases, modifications in terms of service, changes in your business details, etc.

Promoting your company’s products through Email marketing

Here are some tried and tested email writing strategies to promote your company’s products through email:

  • Decide beforehand your promotion goal, fix your objective, and zero in on your target audience.
  • Always write emails from a customer’s perspective. Dwell on how it benefits the reader.
  • Send a signed email (if possible) as this makes the reader feel important and increases chances of engagement and says something about the promotion in the starting subject line.
  • Write email headings that grab attention and spark curiosity.
  • Frame the email such that it contains multiple paragraphs.
  • Include images/graphics as far as possible.
  • Keep the email short and sweet.

Importance of email marketing in the 21st century 

As a marketing channel, it is true that an email possesses the required formality for sending important messages. This presents an explanation for the fact that brands preferred using email communication during the Covid19 crisis. 

Does email marketing still carry the same importance as earlier in 2020?

Email is quite an old technology and dates back to 1971. Still, Email marketing is about 50 years old, and its importance as an online marketing channel has gone up manifold. According to an international survey by Statista, in the year 2019, there were approximately 3.9 billion global email users.

Talking about the USA, about 8 out of every 10 Americans, check their inbox at least once a day. These figures tell the truth that Email marketing is important even today for businesses especially as the world digitalizes faster, and customers demand greater privacy and personalization. It is also a vitally important and effective channel in B2B marketing.

In conclusion, it has to be said that if you do not have an email marketing strategy, it might mean missing out on some easy sales, and the chance to forge stronger connections with your customer base.