Here’s a thought starter: people don’t hate receiving emails; they just hate receiving bad ones.

The misconception is that email marketing is intrusive and annoying. In fact, it’s not email marketing that’s the problem; it’s the outdated practices that out-of-touch marketers use to try to get people to buy.

Email marketing has evolved. It has moved on from sending email blasts when there’s something to sell and is more about using it strategically to deepen customer relationships, build loyalty and revenue.

If you’re interested in making email marketing work better for you this year and beyond, then saying goodbye to outdated email practices is your first step.


Email marketing is evolving. Are you?

Like other types of marketing, email marketing practices change over time.

Whereas the mid-2000’s were about bulk sending to your list when you wanted to boost sales, 2024 is about delivering personalised, tailored customer experiences before, during and after the sale.

That’s because shopping habits have shifted towards buying fewer, more intentional products, making the demand for top-notch customer service greater than ever before. And guess what? Trusty old email marketing is still the number one delivery method to make this happen!

One study found that 62% of consumers say a brand will lose their loyalty if it delivers an unpersonalised experience (that’s up from 45%). Welcome to the new normal!


Here are 5 outdated email practices that belong in the archives:


1 — Engage first, then sell

Bombarding your list with endless sales pitches makes about as much sense as a chocolate teapot.

Instead, start nurturing your list year-round with meaningful content. Share insights, tips, and stories that resonate with your audience. By building a relationship beyond transactional exchanges, you create a more engaged and loyal customer base.

STOP the routine of only reaching out when you need to make a sale. No more flooding inboxes solely with product pushes and discounts.

START transforming your emails into becoming a welcomed part of someone’s inbox, not just another marketing intrusion. Share insightful content, practical tips, and compelling stories that genuinely resonate with your audience.

2 — Segment, don’t mass mail

Email marketing may be a one-to-many marketing channel, but taking a one-size-fits-all approach to sending emails is an outdated email practice. Each message should feel highly relevant to subscribers instead of a mass mailer with generic content.

Outdated email practice from a client audit - Sending indiscriminate email blasts to your entire list results in high bounce rates and can harm your sender reputation.

STOP sending indiscriminate email blasts to your entire list. Not only does it reduce your overall engagement, but it can also increase your bounce rate and harm your sender reputation (see above).

START embracing segmentation. Create a personalised approach around how customers interact with your business. By segmenting your audience based on their preferences, behaviours, or purchase history, you can deliver more targeted messaging to drive engagement.

To get started with segmentation, read our Quick Beginners Guide to Email Marketing Segmentation here >


3 — Adopt holistic marketing practices

Approaching email marketing as a standalone channel is an outdated practice. A marketing strategy builds a holistic approach to engaging your audience, encouraging them to buy and then remain loyal. Email marketing is a channel to make that happen, alongside social media, SEO, affiliate marketing, and more.

STOP neglecting the broader picture that makes up your marketing strategy.

START by connecting the dots between email and other marketing channels to create a seamless and integrated marketing strategy. Every channel should all work together to drive engagement and revenue. It’s a team effort!


4 — Master email template design

Overloading emails with heavy images, Gifs, links and headers is a quick way to making your email look outdated and having it land in the marketing dumpster known as the spam folder. If that happens too often, it can negatively affect your sender reputation.

STOP overwhelming inboxes with bulky image-heavy emails.

START understanding how to craft ‘lighter’ emails, including a well-organised content hierarchy for easy reading.

FREE DOWNLOAD: 10 Ticks For Your Email Template >

Learn the 10 ticks you need to build the foundations for your email marketing template.

5 — Balance campaigns with automations (flows)

Relying solely on sporadic email campaigns as a primary revenue source is no longer an option.

One-off emails are great for sharing news, educational content and offers, whereas an automated email sequence delivers the right message to the right person at the right time.

STOP the misconception that your primary email income source should come solely from campaigns.

START changing your approach by creating strategic flows that work tirelessly to boost your bottom line, nurture leads and guide customers through their journey.


Show the door to outdated email practices that no longer serve your customers or business

Email marketing is a long way from being dead, but it’s important to remember that using outdated email practices will only hold your business back from growing and succeeding.

So, make it your mission to move away from outdated email practices, here’s your 2024 to-do list:

1 — Don’t bombard people with endless sales pitches year-round, instead create a content calendar that engages, educates and sells.
2 — Segment your list based on preferences, behaviours, or purchase history, to deliver more targeted campaigns that drive engagement.
3 — Stop treating email as a standalone marketing channel. Focus on content that works across all of your marketing channels to amplify your message.
4 — Create easy to read (scannable) emails with organised content. Ensure emails are ‘lite’ and not overloaded with heavy images or Gifs.
5 — Stop relying solely on emails campaigns and start building a bank of hard-working automations (flows) that help towards driving revenue while you get on with other things.

Want to see your Shopify customers returning predictable revenue, consistent growth and customer loyalty? Book a no-obligation call to see how we use Klaviyo to help clients do just that!  Book here >