Why Email Marketing Fails & What are the challenges of email marketing ?

Email marketing has been the cornerstone of marketing for almost two decades. It’s the channel where businesses can share their most valuable content with their audiences at scale, without having to worry about distribution. It’s the channel where you can nurture your leads and turn them into customers. It’s also the channel where you can reach your customers when they’re ready to buy—in other words, when they’re most ready to purchase.

It has been one of the most effective ways to reach an audience over the past decade. But as we know, nothing in life is permanent. In 2022, email marketing fails. The platform is no longer a viable channel for marketers, and instead they are forced to find new, innovative ways to reach their audience.

Email marketing has been around for over 40 years. It has evolved to become one of the most powerful marketing channels. Yet, in spite of its proven track record, email marketing has been criticized for being outdated and ineffective. Some have even predicted its imminent demise.

It has been touted as a powerful way to connect with customers, build brand awareness, and increase sales. But what happens when email marketing stops working? What if the strategies that have worked for years suddenly fail?

The email channel is known for multiple advantages. It is convenient to implement practically, offers many options, and has a fantastic. 

But we also face problems, the most disappointing of which is people ignore emails, not performing the desired action, or worst of all unsubscribing. Why does it happen?

The web is constantly progressing. It offers many tools like modern HTML template builders, ESP services, and other digital assistants that help us at all stages. But even the best tools are not enough; the secret of success still rests with us.

In this post we’ll cover the 7 cardinal sins of email marketing, to help you avoid them.

1. Being Too Late

I can define this mistake as probably the worst. It’s worse than broken links, incorrect dates, or prices. Even more harmful than ugly design.

We lose a lot when postponing email strategy implementation. Beginners often focus all their attention on the content, social media activities, SEO issues… All that is important, right. But ignoring email campaigns is a hard fail.

Thousands of visitors never come again to your website. In other words, they leave the very first levels of the marketing funnel. While regular emailing keeps them engaged and prevents churn.

So delays here are only profitable for competitors. Don’t wait until you collect “enough” contacts. Start as soon as possible. 

Frequency matters too. Don’t bomb people with emails; it annoys and causes unsubscribes. Email frequency is an individual parameter depending on many factors.

2. Disregarding Clients’ Expectations

A fundamental axiom: people unsubscribe when emails are irrelevant. The same goes for neglected expectations. Even the best content with next-gen features won’t save the situation.

I mentioned the email frequency a bit above. Notice that if you announce the weekly emails but send them every day, this is an example of ignoring expectations. Be honest with readers.

Another typical issue is off-topic. If your subscribers are waiting for content related to smartphones, send them newsletters about smartphones, not dresses or domestic turtles 🙂

But in some cases, getting off-topic can be good. It all depends on the target audience, actual situation, and communication style. 

3. Bad Segmentation 

Once again, relevance is vital. So we must avoid generic emails. Instead, especially if your contact list is extensive enough, apply all the possible parameters: age, gender, location, customers history, etc.

Where to get the respective data? A typical solution is to use update preferences forms in emails or on the website. Let clients choose the topics that are interesting for them.

Use surveys, sign-in forms, AI-based techniques of segmentation… Smart algorithms are great helpers that track clients’ behavior and then process the data for segmentation purposes. 

The better we know our subscribers, the deeper we segment the contact list. It allows sending precisely targeted newsletters to respective segments.

4. Insufficient Personalization 

As Hubspot stats say, personalized emails’ open rate is 26% higher, and their click-through rate is 14% better. But even besides index data, poor personalization is just nonsense today.

Clients are looking for content that matches their preferences, so marketers have to consider these expectations. Segmentation and dynamic range are essential here, but they are not the only techniques.

Everything is much more sophisticated here, in addition to personalized subjects and content. Another solution is to generate recommendations that include the previously browsed products.

AI-powered automation comes to help. Machines will upgrade the classical personalization to the next level called hyper-personalization.

5. Underestimating Mobile-Friendliness 

It’s simply unacceptable to send non-responsive emails today. With so many people opening email on different devices, this is a huge fail.

The modern world is full of gadgets and devices. Email has been opened on smartphones more frequently than on desktop PCs and notebooks in recent years. Up to 70% of readers will read messages on mobiles very soon. No wonder that responsivity turned into a mobile priority.

Regarding layout and design, there are no problems: modern template editors are featured with automated responsivity. But mobile-first means not only layout/design adjustment for mobiles, full-width buttons, or larger fonts. We have to work with content too. Don’t overwrite text remember that recipients read inbox emails on the run. 

Just imagine yourself reading emails in the cafe or cab. And ask yourself: is everything convenient? Would you take the desired action on the run?

6. Non-Professional Approach 

People are quite skeptical of new brands. We need to do our best to attract them. So everything must be done professionally.

The best solution: be a perfectionist. If newsletters look amateurish, they are likely to repel.  

Being amateurish will also ruin your brand identity and reduce customers’ trust. Pay close attention to design, stick to your corporate style, analyze each detail in the context of overall harmony.

7. Overlooking Tests and Improvements 

Testing is vital. Before sending an email campaign, check it via Litmus or Email on Acid to be sure that message looks just as planned. These tools allow testing email rendering by +90 combinations of email clients, devices, and OS.

Knowledge is power. Always try and test your marketing strategies. Are you satisfied with your actual performance? Run A/B tests and focus on the most significant wins and failures. 

Email marketing has been one of the most effective marketing strategies out there. It provides a platform to build relationships with your customers, and can offer the opportunity to nurture those relationships over time. It’s also a great way to reach a large number of people in a short space of time. But email marketing isn’t without its challenges.

What are the challenges of email marketing in 2022 ?

The biggest challenge of email marketing is to get subscribers. There’s no magic formula to achieve this; it just requires a lot of time and effort. You need to connect with people who are interested in your topic and who would benefit from reading your emails. This often involves sending emails to people who haven’t purchased from you before or who have previously shown no interest in doing so.

Another biggest challenge is learning how to send emails that are actually useful to your subscribers. This might sound like an easy thing to do, but in reality, you need to figure out what your audience actually wants and needs, and deliver that to them in your email campaigns.

Email marketing has been a boon to small businesses and marketers, allowing them to connect with new customers and build relationships that would have been impossible before. But email marketing comes with its fair share of challenges. For starters, email marketing is time-consuming, which means you have to make it a priority. And since most consumers don’t check their inbox when they’re supposed to, you have to be consistent in sending your messages in order to maximize their effectiveness.


The biggest challenge of email marketing is the time required for it to be effective. You have to be consistent in your messaging and provide valuable content in order to build a subscriber base. It’s also difficult to measure the success of email campaigns because there’s no direct correlation between clicks and opens. That makes it difficult to know if you’re sending your message to the right people or if you should be spending more time developing your email strategy.

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