Respect the Inbox: Marketing with Email

Real talk when it comes to marketing with email? 

#1) Email marketing is a powerful tool for reaching customers and potential customers.

#2) It’s by far the most popular marketing channel, even surpassing social media. 

People are registering new email addresses every single day. The opportunity is growing faster than we can deliver. But beware! Marketing with email can only work for you when you focus on a respectful approach to hitting send. Don’t just spam people with sales emails. 

Focusing on the fundamentals of relationship marketing within your emails is going to make your marketing efforts really lucrative.

What gives marketing with email such a high ROI?

Email marketing is such a freaking powerful way to stay in touch with your existing customers and build relationships with potential customers. But it’s more than just sending out promotional emails about your products + services. And it’s more than a once-a-month newsletter with a thousand links.

There’s a much bigger picture that I think many marketing gurus miss. It’s about growing a community on a more intimate level. 

You see, when we go on social media…we act very passively. The algorithm shows us what it thinks we want to see. We get a dopamine hit for interacting. That’s our incentive to interact with the app and its users, right?

It’s way different with your email app. Inside email, we are actively engaged. Our emails sit there and it’s up to us to decipher what we want to see and what we don’t. There’s not really a dopamine hit like on social media. But we need emails. And we’re looking for something specifically created for us….something we need.

Like our power bill. Or that coupon we asked for. Or our favorite newsletter that reminds us every week that we’re interested in learning how to draw better. 

It’s a cozier side of the internet. Some might use the word intimate when comparing it to social media.

That’s why your email marketing strategy should be about conversations. Getting to know people so they actively search for you/your company’s name in the inbox. Remember–they are looking for what they need and want in their inbox! 

If you can use that to your advantage and write emails that 

  • facilitate conversation
  • connect with your ideal potential customers
  • get your readers to look for your next email

…then marketing with email is really going to pay off for you, baby!

I’m sure you’ve heard of the “know, like, and trust” factor. Writing emails that connect with ideal clients builds that KLT quick! 

Think of marketing with email this way:  You’re taking them from follower to friend to customer!

From your welcome sequence to your sales emails, email marketing is all about developing a relationship with your subscribers.

Respect the Inbox - Permission Marketing

Some forms of marketing can be really intrusive, right? You know…like the pop-up live chats to push you through the sales process. Or the multiple spam calls after filling out a form for a quote. We didn’t provide permission in those instances. Gross!

What gives marketing with email such an incredible ROI? If they’re on your email list, you have their direct consent. Someone clicked that checkbox confirming that you can email them. Don’t take this lightly, my email friend. Respect the permission they’ve granted. Suddenly sending sales pitches after sales pitches is one of the quickest ways for someone to hit that unsubscribe button and it’s game over from there.

Now, I’m not saying don’t send lots of sales emails. I do! I’m just saying there’s a right way and a wrong way to go about things. But it’s all about getting their permission to market. Let me explain…

The Welcome Sequence

Yes, email marketing has a 36x return on every dollar you invest in it, but like Spiderman’s uncle once said, “With great power comes great responsibility.” People are trusting you with their information; be a valuable addition to their inbox. Walk them through a welcome sequence to set expectations (like when + how you will be emailing them, but also that you will be sending them sales emails!!) and transition them into the nurture emails. These are often called newsletters.

This is your opportunity to move them through the Email Staircase, from follower to friend to customer!

Educate and Guide Email Subscribers

Ya gotta engage subscribers for email marketing to work. But how can you do that in a way that is respectful and effective? It feels complicated, but it actually leans to the simple side of things: educate and guide your email subscribers.

The best way to guide your readers is to provide them with useful information that helps them solve their problems. Ya know, the problems they came searching for you to solve! 

Guiding  could include

  • tips
  • tutorials
  • case studies
  • a simple overview of what you’re offering and why it’s beneficial for them

Make sure your content is written in an easy-to-understand format so readers don’t feel overwhelmed. Or better yet! Include visuals like images or make videos. People love learning with their eyeballs.

But take note! Value isn’t just information spewing! You can provide value in so many different ways.

  • exclusive discounts 
  • promotions for subscribers only
  • surveys or polls to get feedback to guide your next move

Varying your content and the way you provide value will ensure they keep coming back for more! AKA: Opening your emails, clicking, and buying. #booyah

Send Value in Each Email

When it comes to email marketing, sending value should always be the focus. But remember, value can look like a lot of different things (helpful advice, industry updates, exclusive offers, etc.) 

Each email sent out should have a purpose and provide something of worth to your subscribers. Each email should leave your subscriber thinking “I’m glad I opened that.”

The key to gaining the attention of your readers is to make sure your emails are informative and engaging. Then, make sure your emails provide some form of benefit or insight for them. Last, segue the email so that your readers are encouraged to take action or interact with your business. 

You want your email content to be relevant (“I needed this”) BUT ALSO interesting (“This is cool!”). Then tie it all together by sharing how you and your business can help them take things to the next level.

With this strategy, you can maximize the effectiveness of your email marketing campaigns and increase customer engagement over time.

She shoots, she scores!… type of thing. 

Last note to help make sure your emails are valuable: make sure to maintain a consistent brand voice with each email you send out. You don’t want to sound like you’re running for United States President last week and Dennis Rodman in the 90s this week. 

By just writing the way you want to write, you’re going to connect with the right people and communicate value so much more easily.

Just remember that at the end of the day, email marketing works because it’s permission marketing. People opt-in and give their consent to hear more from you. So make it worth their while.

Create relationships in the inbox by thinking of your emails as a way to engage your community. It’s all about understanding their needs and providing them with value-added content to encourage them to get help by way of becoming more involved in your brand. 

With an effective email strategy in place, you can increase brand awareness while keeping your customers happily engaged over time.

Create Space for Your Community

Let subscribers know that email is a two-way street. If they have a question, they should be able to reply and get an actual answer from you. Yes! This takes up time in your already-packed schedule. But yo! Email marketing has a 30-40x return on investment. I say that it’s worth it to make space in your calendar or create systems and processes so you have time to answer them.

Don’t you?


You send out an email once or twice a week. Somebody replies to one and you never reply back. That somebody is like…

“Well, you’re allowed into my inbox, but I’m not allowed into yours? Okay. Bye.”

When you’re trying to cultivate a community…and get email to work for you…an open line of communication is essential.

Make it a Personalized Experience

I mentioned this in Email Marketing for Beginners, but don’t treat your subscribers like a number. Use personalization like their first name in your emails. It is a great way to stand out in the inbox. 

Writing stories, giving updates, and sharing articles that people on your email list actually care about creates a sense of belonging. You’re creating an experience that allows your subscribers to feel seen and heard.


Look boo. The reality is marketing with emails does NOT have to feel icky. 

When you treat your subscribers (and their inboxes) with respect? Something amazing happens. You create a whole ecosystem. A place where you can share ideas and push your business forward. A place where your potential customers can get real help and feel safe. A place where that safety translates into sales and bookings. 

The conversations you create with emails and the sense of community you cultivate is powerful. Treat it with care and you will go far. I can’t wait to see it.

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