85 EMAIL IDEAS TO SEND YOUR SUBSCRIBERS (without being spammy)

I’ve said it many times before but it bears repeating – email is one of the most powerful marketing tools for your small business.

It provides direct correspondence to a warm audience of people who have said “Yes, I want to hear from you”. And, even better, a big chunk of it can be done on autopilot (see this blog post for more).

But, still, I see so many businesses not do it. Why?

Well, it typically comes down to two excuses:

  1. I have no idea what to send in my emails; or
  2. I don’t want to be spammy

Let’s bust those two excuses right here as I share you with 85 email ideas to send your subscribers (without being spammy).

email ideas for your welcome sequence

A welcome sequence is a series of emails you send immediately after someone joins your list.

The premise is simple: once someone signs up they are at their most excited about your business. The numbers prove it with statistical reports showing average open rates of 50 – 70% for that first “welcome” email.  Mine currently sits at 71.2%.

This is your opening to share the best, most important things about your business and how you can help. Then you can automate a number of emails to go out over a series of time, eventually leading to an offer. The idea here is to be helpful and/or inspirational – not just sales offer after sales offer.

Here are some ideas (these can be separate emails or you can combine a few into one):

  1. Introduce yourself and your business (save them having to go to that About Page)
  2. Why you do what you do
  3. Why you do it better
  4.  A roundup of your top blogs or videos
  5.  A list of your favourite resources or equipment
  6. Provide an extra free training, download or resource
  7. Share your top  / most crucial tips
  8.  Share the basic or foundational information they need to know
  9.  Repurpose a previous newsletter email or blog post that has done really well
  10. Provide them with a choice of what to learn more about (e.g. “Here are 4 topics I can help you with, click on which one you want help with” which then leads to another email on that topic).
  11. Follow me on…
  12. Join my group
  13. Top products

Extra Note: Some businesses avoid email because they provide a product or service where the purchasing window is short – for example weddings. These are the perfect scenarios for welcome sequences as you can provide that information along the way when they are really in the frame of mind to buy – even if you don’t plan on sending newsletter updates.

email ideas for an event

If someone signs up for an event like a Webinar or Challenge, you want to keep them interested, especially if there is a long wait. But how can you do this without feeling like you are repeating the same information over and over?

  1. Provide a worksheet or workbook
  2. Provide recommended reading / listening / watching until then
  3. Share a story or testimonial from someone who has  loved a previous version
  4. Send a reminder of what they will learn and what outcomes they can expect
  5. Send a replay after the fact

email ideas for your newsletter

I really dislike the term newsletter as it seems such an old school way of thinking about the regular emails you send your list. Yes, your regular updates can include a roundup of the latest news but more often than not they will have one central focus. And, statistics show that more personalised, plain text emails do better than all those fancy, graphics-laden ones anyway.

That said, here are some ideas to focus on in your regular updates:

  1. A mistake I made
  2. X things I wish I had known about / before
  3. X things you can learn about from ______________ (e.g. TV show, current event)
  4. Behind the scenes creation (especially great for product businesses)
  5. Behind the scenes “general life” (especially if you are your brand)
  6. A soapbox moment / opinion / rant
  7. A funny story
  8. Top tips for X
  9. How to X
  10. X myths about_____________
  11. X signs you are _____________
  12. X mistakes businesses / people make when it comes to ____________
  13. The <insert adjective> truth about ______________
  14. X things you didn’t know about _____________
  15. Favourite experts / influencers / websites
  16. Expert opinion roundup
  17. Top blogs / videos / podcasts about _____________ (sharing others content)
  18. The evolution of your business
  19. A trip down memory lane
  20. Predictions for the future
  21. Set a challenge
  22. X shortcuts to _____________
  23. X ideas for _____________
  24. X hacks to _____________
  25. A review or comparison of products, services or software
  26. Creative ways to use _____________
  27. Why you should stop _____________
  28. Latest blog post, video or podcast episode
  29. An extract from a blog post, video or podcast episode
  30. An old blog post (repurposed or not) – chances are poople haven’t gone all the way through your archives and if they had read that thing from 2 years ago they have probably forgotten
  31. Latest social media happenings
  32. Client or customer story
  33. Ask a question or conduct a survey

Or any of the ideas from the welcome sequence.

Note: Some of these ideas make for great blog posts too – win win.

 email marketing step by step guide download

email ideas for making a sales pitch

This is the part people really freak out about because we don’t want to be “spammy”. But if you have done your email right in your welcome sequence or your newsletters you have provided great value along the way so making a sales pitch is just that last step in the process.

A great way to reframe this is to think about that you are providing an opportunity for your subscribers – to better themselves in some way or to solve a problem.

Here are some ways to do it without always being so direct:

  1. Share your story
  2. Share a customers story
  3. Answer some FAQ’s
  4. Answer objections
  5. Eliminate excuses
  6. Give an inspirational pep talk
  7. Share a case study
  8. Share some testimonials

And here are some more direct options:

  1. Play on fear of mission out (FOMO)
  2. Give a final deadline
  3. Percentage off
  4. Free shipping
  5. Buy one, get one
  6. Product of the week / month
  7. Or just a straight out here’s an amazing thing that will help you

As part of your regular newsletter updates, you can also place a small graphic or testimonial at the bottom.

email ideas for retargeting

Email is also a powerful tool to help increase those conversion rates!! You can send emails in response to:

  1. Abandoned carts
  2. Looking at certain pages of your website (with some email providers, assuming they are subscribed to your list)
  3. A downsell
  4. An upsell

email ideas for post-purchase

One area we often forget about are for those that have already purchased from us. This is an amazing opportunity to provide amazing customer service and to develop loyalty – whether it’s for repeat business or a referral. Bonus is much of this can be automated.

  1. How to use ________
  2. How to style __________
  3. How to look after __________
  4. Top tips for getting the most out of __________
  5. Inspiration ideas
  6. How the process works / what you can expect (for service-based)
  7. Regular client check-in’s
  8. Loyalty offers
  9. Birthday offers
  10. Upsells
  11. You might also like ___________
  12. Repeat purchase reminders
  13. Request for a testimonial or review
  14. Request for feedback
  15. Request for user generated content (e.g. pictures for Instagram)

now, go, write that email!

Writers block and spam-concerns have been conquered. Now it’s time for you to take action and start sending those emails.

Even if you only have 3 subscribers and 1of them is your mum… (they are still important and it’s good practice)

Even if you haven’t emailed them in a year… (this is a great opportunity to re-introduce yourself!)

Even if you have nothing to sell right at the moment…

At least you now have something to say!

Which one are you going to try? Let me know in the comments.

want more help with email? you might like these other blog posts:

 

4 Ways Email Marketing can Increase your Sales (on Autopilot)

The Ultimate Guide to Email List Building   

MailChimp vs ConvertKit vs ActiveCampaign

How to Automate Emails but Still Keep it Personal

Does Email List Size Matter? The Quantity vs Quality Debate

5 List Building Mistakes that Small Businesses Make

Author: Yael

Yael is an experienced marketer, mum of 2 and passionate about helping guide small business owners through the confusing world of online marketing and finding the best solutions for their unique business. Like a matchmaker but for marketing!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *