7 email marketing campaign ideas that will increase your open rate

7 Email Marketing Campaign Ideas That Will Increase Your Open Rate

No modern digital marketing strategy is complete without email marketing. 

Over the years, email marketing has provided some of the highest returns on your advertising spend of any of the most popular content marketing strategies. It regularly outperforms other digital channels like social media, blog posts, videos, etc. 

But like any marketing strategy, getting the most out of your email marketing takes a bit of time and study. It’s not enough to bombard your customers with emails and expect them to open and take action. You must study the best practices for crafting your marketing emails to ensure the best results. After all, more businesses are embracing email marketing, so cutting through the competition gets more complex yearly. 

Thankfully, you don’t have to start from scratch. Digital marketing agencies have poured over the results of their email marketing campaigns for decades. After analyzing various campaigns, they’ve discovered email marketing campaign types that work best for most businesses. 

These seven email marketing campaigns will help you increase open rates and boost conversions. Let’s get started!

Discounts & Sales

Who hasn’t signed up for an email list at one point for a 25% off coupon code? Speaking for ourselves, one of the main reasons we sign up for marketing emails from companies is the hope for special access to deals and savings. 

Think of discounts and sales as a reward to your customers for the direct access they granted you when they signed up. Emails with deals and discounts frequently get high open rates, but you’d be surprised where the sweet spot is. 

You might assume a whopping 50% discount would get readers clicking, but you’d be wrong. The sweet spot seems to lie in the 10-25% discount range. Too much less or more than that, and people feel it’s either not worth their time or too good to be true. 

To get the most out of your offer, ensure you’ve included a clear call to action, or next steps, for your customers. It’s not enough to simply list a discount code. You need to push them to use it by encouraging a click to an item in their cart or a landing page designed around the promotion.

Contests & Giveaways

Contests are the popular sister to discounts. No one begrudges free. In fact, email marketing campaigns featuring contests and giveaways have a 3-5% higher open rate than other email types. 

But of course, you can’t run an effective business if all you’re doing is giving products away for free. So, even though contests and giveaways are effective, you must use them sparingly. Take a focused approach and spread out your giveaways throughout the year. If customers know that there’s a quarterly giveaway, for example, they’re more likely to stay subscribed to your email list. 

Also, be sure to get the most traction you can from your giveaways. Advertise on social media and other channels to increase your exposure. Giveaways are a great way to grow the number of people signed up for your email list.

Bonus tip: ensure the follow-up email after a contest closes is a doozy. You will have several new sign-ups on your list, and you’ll want to keep them around after the contest ends. Show them there’s plenty of extra value to be had from your list besides giveaways. 

Engagement Emails

You’re no longer blasting out marketing messages that customers consume in a vacuum these days. It’s expected that communication is a two-way street between brands and their customers. You don’t just want people signed up on your various channels. You want active and engaged members.  

Engagement is a more important metric for digital marketing activities than simple clicks. Anyone can buy “likes.” But are these customers who “liked” your page converting to customers? Customers who get engaged and talk with your business and other customers are likelier to stay loyal. 

So don’t be afraid to use email marketing to drive your engagement across all your digital channels. You could ask them to visit a newly created social channel to like and comment or ask loyal customers to come to give you a review online. Suppose there’s an active discussion in one of your posts. In that case, you can simply ask other customers to weigh in with their opinions. 

If you have a low engagement at the moment, you’ll probably want to offer them something for their time, like a discount code or special shout-out online. This will help encourage them to click through and engage where you’re suggesting. But if you stay active, you’ll find they’ll come back around on their own without incentives in the future. 

Customer Satisfaction Surveys

People love speaking their minds and, even more importantly, being heard. 

While question emails might not push through the numbers of a contest, they can provide valuable insights into your customer’s motivations, wants, and general satisfaction level. Used correctly, this data can prove invaluable. 

You can schedule these at regular intervals to touch base with your customers. Many businesses will also set up triggered emails sent out to customers after they’ve contacted support or interacted with the company. These automated emails speed up the process and will ensure they get in front of the customer while the interaction is still fresh in their minds. 

Don’t just hoard the results once you get them. Share what you’ve learned with your customers so they know you’re listening. Do a follow-up email after people have responded to your invite for feedback – even if it’s terrible. You can gain more support by embracing something your customers feel you need to work on than by ignoring it and pretending the issue doesn’t exist. 


Use announcement emails to update your subscribers about new developments within your company. Have a new product or service? Blast out an email to let your customers know. 

But don’t just stop at announcing the new thing. Help your audience understand why this new development matters to them. Will this new product or service save them time or money somehow? Does it improve on something they’ve already been enjoying? Don’t assume the customer will connect the dots on their own. Make the announcement clear, easy to understand, and fun to read. 

Don’t just end it with the announcement. As with all emails, you’ll want a clear call to action at the end of the announcement. So, develop a custom landing page for the new product or service to direct them to or a news section of your website with further information for them to check out. You always want to drive activity while you’re top of mind. You can’t count on customers remembering a new product or service weeks from today. 

Educational Emails

People love learning about how to use and do things differently. But if left to their own devices, they could inadvertently discover a competitor while looking up a how-to video. By sending instructional information to your email lists, you can get ahead of any questions before they come up, ensuring they’re not on Google looking at your competitor’s website. 

Most people read emails on mobile devices, so you’ll want to keep things clear, short, and focused. You can also direct them to videos or special landing pages with more information. 

Educational emails help your customers, but they also set you up as an authority in their minds and your field. Don’t underestimate the value of being a trusted industry leader. So, instead of holding back your most valuable information, share it freely and openly with your audience. Teach them helpful information, and they’ll keep coming back to you for years. 


Last but not least are reactivation emails. These serve as a gentle nudge or reminder to folks that haven’t been engaging with your email marketing. Think of these like house cleaning. 

It can be humbling to send out these types of emails, as you might lose some subscribers. But it’s better to stop paying to send emails to people who aren’t opening or reading things. The last thing you want is an email campaign setting off spam filters (something that can happen when too many emails are sent directly to the trash bin). 

You’ll want to send these reactivation emails to a specific segment of your email marketing list. Focus on those members who have been inactive for a set amount of time and target these messages directly to them. You could entice them to stay subscribed with a discount offer. Or you can ask them directly why they’re not opening things, so maybe you have a chance to fix it with them. 

Good Luck With Your Email Marketing Campaigns!

We hope these points stimulate your thinking about how you can revamp, repurpose, and renew your email marketing campaigns. 

As with all marketing advice, it’s essential to use this information as a starting point. Every business and audience is different; what works for some might not work for you. Scrutinize your data while using these campaign ideas to determine what works best for your business. 

Seek out professional digital marketing assistance if you feel stuck. It’s better to ask for help before making a blunder than try to repair it after a mistake. Often, you only get one chance with a subscriber. So, you want to ensure you’re ready to make a great impression the first time. 

Digital marketing is what we do. If you have any questions about email marketing, SEO strategies, or anything else, please reach out to us today

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