To maximize the value of an email relationship, you need to cater to your subscribers’ needs and wants throughout their entire subscriber lifecycle. My presentation at Connections today talked about the six stages of the subscriber lifestyle and shared research, advice, and examples pertaining to each stage.

Here’s my slide deck, followed by links to the resources that I refer to in it.


Email Marketing Rules (2nd Ed.)

>> Get details about the book on


The Swipe File

>> View the pinboards on Pinterest


Retail Touchpoints Optimized

>> Download the report via


Zillow acquisition example: mobile app

>> View in the Audience Growth Swipe File


Krispy Kreme acquisition example: Product packaging

>> View in the Audience Growth Swipe File


Olive Garden acquisition examples: Signup opportunities in restaurants

>> View example #1 in the Audience Growth Swipe File

>> View example #2 in the Audience Growth Swipe File


Home Depot acquisition example: Opt-in via e-receipt

>> View in the Audience Growth Swipe File


Noun Project acquisition example: Opt-in confirmation email

>> View in the Email Swipe File


State of Marketing 2014

>> Download the report via


Pinterest onboarding example: Welcome series

>> View in the Email Swipe File


Walmart onboarding example: Holiday-themed welcome email

>> View in the Email Swipe File


At the Tipping Point for Mobile-Friendly Email Design

>> Read on the ExactTarget blog


The Growing Adoption of Mobile-Friendly Email Design #Infographic

>> Read on the ExactTarget blog


Reliant engagement example: Personalized weekly summary email

>> View in the Email Swipe File


Hipmunk engagement example: Infographic email

>> View in the Email Swipe File


2014 Email Marketing Holiday Calendar

>> Download the guide via


American Apparel reengagement example: Reengagement email

>> View in the Email Swipe File


Pinkberry reengagement example: Mobile app reengagement email

>> View in the Email Swipe File


Lowe’s super-engagement example: Progressive profiling email

>> View in the Email Swipe File


ModCloth super-engagement example: Signup anniversary email

>> View in the Email Swipe File


Crate & Barrel super-engagement example: Post-purchase care instructions email

>> View in the Email Swipe File


Starbucks super-engagement example: Loyalty program milestone email

>> View in the Email Swipe File


Staples transition example: Unsubscribe page

>> View in the Email Swipe File


Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee transition example: Opt-out confirmation page

>> View in the Audience Growth Swipe File


Mini USA transition example: Re-permission email

>> View in the Email Swipe File

Getting Email Out of the Friend Zone

Direct Marketing NewsEmail may be a fairly mature channel, but it still outshines other newer, sexier channels like mobile and social. In the fact, the emergence of those channels has only strengthened email, cementing it as the power retention marketing channel.

In this interview with Elyse Dupre of DM News, I make the case that email marketing has lost none of its luster and share some advice on how to get the most out of your program.

>> Read the article on

5 New Email Marketing Terms

Read Chad White's Convince & Convert blog postsAs a former journalist, I love how email marketing is always changing. As an English major, I love language. At the intersection of those is the creation of new terms to describe emerging and existing practices, tactics, and tools in email marketing.

Over the past decade, I was in the right place at the right time to coin the terms share with your network (SWYN) and video gif, among others. Giving things a name is extremely powerful, as it facilitates conversations and raises awareness. For instance, the explosion of activity around content marketing is due in large part to it being giving the name content marketing, as this practice has certainly been around for a very long time.

In my first guest post for the Convince & Convert blog, I introduce five new email marketing terms you should know…

  • Granted Media
  • Super-Engagement
  • Opt Up
  • Real List Growth
  • Confirmed Opt-In Lite (COIL)

>> Read the full article on the Convince & Convert blog

>> Also check out the Email Marketing Dictionary

Email Marketing Rules (2nd Edition)On the Acknowledgments page of my book, I tip my hat to some of the folks that have influenced me most. And throughout my book, I quote people—many of them authors—who are great sources of additional information.

I highly recommend that you follow these people and learn from them. To make it easier, I’ve created a richer Acknowledgments page on my website that includes links to Twitter accounts, LinkedIn profiles, books published, and articles and posts written.

There’s also a slide deck on that page that highlights the epigraphs throughout Email Marketing Rules. These are profound and poignant quotes that provide additional perspective on various email marketing topics. I hope you find them as inspiring as I do.

Thanks again to everyone who has shaped, confirmed, and challenged my views over the years.

>> Visit the Acknowledgements & Quotes page

Crowd Favorites from the Swipe File: August 2014

Crowd Favorites from the Swipe FileWe pin tons of inspiring digital marketing examples to our Swipe File pinboards on Pinterest every month. And each month you tell which ones most inspired you by repinning and liking them.

Here are your favorite pins among the ones we uploaded last month:

The Email Swipe File’s crowd favorite was…

Fab apologizes for cat-filled test email with cat-filled apology email >> View the pin

>> Browse the Email Swipe File

The Mobile Swipe File’s crowd favorite was…

Vine push message is aware of its context >> View the pin

>> Browse the pinboard

The Social Swipe File’s crowd favorite was…

NBA Cares attracts followers with charity event pictures and details >> View the pin

>> Browse the pinboard

The Audience Growth Swipe File’s crowd favorite was…

The Eiteljorg Museum turns a business card into a social calling card >> View the pin

>> Browse the pinboard

Help determine this month’s crowd favorites by repinning and liking the pins that inspire you most.

The Email Marketing Rules for Measuring Success

View all of Chad's MediaPost columnIn my latest Email Insider column for MediaPost, I discuss three poor email marketing success metrics and explain what a better alternative metric is in each case.

Instead of unqualified list growth, where every new subscriber is viewed as equally valuable, I recommend using “real list growth.” This metric adjusts for subscriber productivity, just like real GDP adjusts for inflation.

Instead of optimizing campaign metrics, I recommend optimizing subscriber lifetime value. If we do our jobs well, subscribers buy often and stay subscribed for a long time because we’ve engaged them in between purchases. If we do our jobs poorly, subscribers’ purchases and engagement fall off quickly.

Instead of writing subject lines that maximize open rates, I recommend writing them so that they maximize conversions. That’s because a good, descriptive subject line pre-selects openers who are likely to convert.

>> Read the entire column on

ETMC-HEMC-Blog-Sidebar-370x370Every month through January, we’ll be reviewing our predictions from the 2014 Email Marketing Holiday Calendar for last month and discussing what to expect this month in terms of holiday messaging trends.

In August, we predicted that major retailers would send their active subscribers 18 promotional emails during July—and we were once again right on target. Our panel of more than 100 retailers sent their subscribers 18.1 emails on average last month.

In September, we’re expecting retailers to again send their active subscribers around 18 promotional emails each. The amount of holiday messaging will continue to be very low.

>> Read the entire post on the ExactTarget Blog

Internet_Retailer_logoFollowing the release of the 2nd Edition of Email Marketing Rules this week, I spoke with Internet Retailer Editor in Chief Don Davis about what’s changed since the 1st Edition was published and how email marketing will be different this holiday season and in the more distant future.

Here are the questions that Don asked me:

  1. What are the most important changes in email marketing since the 1st Edition of “Email Marketing Rules”?
  2. Email inbox providers are making it easier for consumers to divert marketing e-mail to a separate folder, which they may rarely if ever view. What can a retailer or brand do to maximize the number of consumers who see its messages?
  3. How is email marketing likely to be different this holiday season from last?
  4. Consumers now view most marketing emails on smartphones or tablets. How much marketers adapt their tactics to this shift?
  5. What’s likely to be the next big change in email marketing?

To read my answers, check out the entire interview on

Email Marketing Rules (2nd Edition)I’m thrilled to announce that the 2nd Edition of Email Marketing Rules is now available! This is the book for you if…

  • You loved the 1st Edition and want more solid advice
  • You’re relatively new to email marketing and want to gain a firm foundation
  • You’re an experienced email marketer and want a tool to help you systematically review your email program to find improvements
  • You work for an email team, agency, or vendor company and need a tool to help train new hires
  • You’re an executive and you want to better understand what your email team is always talking about
  • You’re an email marketer and you want to give your executives a book that will explain what you’re always talking about

>> Buy print edition

>> Buy Kindle edition (which is readable on any device with the free Kindle Reader app)

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who helped make the 2nd Edition of Email Marketing Rules a reality: my wonderful editors, Mark Brownlow and Aaron Smith; Jay Baer, who wrote a fantastic Foreword; Andrea Smith, who designed an awesome cover; my copy editor, Brian Walls; Kyle Lacy, Jeff Rohrs, and all the other great folks at the Salesforce ExactTarget Marketing Cloud; and most of all, my wife Kate, who put up with a moody, obsessive, and distracted husband all summer. Thanks, everyone!

The Last Word on August 2014

The Last WordA roundup of email marketing articles, posts, tweets and examples you might have missed last month…

Must-read articles, posts & whitepapers

7 experts on why building your email list is so important (Campaign Monitor)

The New School Marketer’s Guide to Email Deliverability (Oracle)

Video in Email (StyleCampaign)

Insightful & entertaining tweets

@matty_caldwell: Love this patagonia email. now responsive and totally bulletproof: #emaildesign @Yesmail

@meladorri: “When I see ‘having trouble’ in the preheader, I just automatically delete the email.” — @ttaulli on mobile (un)friendly emails.

@BlakeMcCreary: I love this responsive idea! Resize your browser to see the logos respond. #design #branding

@becskr: I have been in Outlook 1800px height limit hell all week

@mparkerbyrd: It would be difficult to overstate how much I love preheader text, and how often I think people get it wrong. #emailmarketing

@minethatdata: Always interesting to have social media gurus use pop-ups to ask us to follow them via email. Didn’t they tell us email was dead?

@meladorri: OH at #TEDC14 “Google has built a driverless car, I have faith that they’ll support CSS in email someday” @flcarneiro @KEVINgotbounce

@briangraves: Couple of my resources mentioned by @KEVINgotbounce & @RodriguezCommaJ & #TEDC14

@iamelliot: 18,796!!! #emaildesign RT @TheNextWeb: There are at least 18,796 distinct Android devices, says new report

Great additions to the Swipe File pinboards

Fab sends a cat-filled apology email on 8/3/14 >> View the pin

Zillow sends a trivia-filled email about famous TV and movie homes on the market in a 7/10/14 email >> View the pin

Gerber wishes the subscriber’s son a happy birthday in an 8/2014 email >> View the pin

Twitter wishes a user a happy 5-year Twitterversary in a 5/2014 email >> View the pin

Noteworthy subject lines

Horchow, 8/20 —  the holidays? Our NEW collections have just arrived
Tiny Prints, 8/17 — Shhh… It’s the Holiday Collection Preview
Lowe’s, 8/20 — No Need to Wait. Labor Day Deals Start Now!
Vera Bradley, 8/14 — Show a little love. 20% off with ID.‏
Vera Bradley, 8/10 — Hey, night owls. 75% off is up late.
Target, 8/20 — Your home called. It wants new furniture.
Levi’s, 8/9 — Well plaid.
GOP, 8/20 — What’s your t-shirt size?
Ninety Nine Restaurant, 8/20 — Thanks for Being Awesome: You Helped Us Raise Over $550K for Cancer Research!
The Home Depot, 8/4 —Unlock Savings, Product Reviews & More—Download our App Today!
The Container Store, 8/3 — Top Pinned Bin!
J.Crew, 8/1 — Woman vs. AC
Under Armour, 8/4 — Meet The Women Of Will | #IWillWhatIWant

New posts on

Smoothing Out the Mobile Email Journey

Praise for the 2nd Edition of Email Marketing Rules

Click-Baiting Is Bad on Facebook and in the Inbox

The Summer of Mobile Email Love

Glossary of Common Email Marketing Terms from Email Marketing Rules

Sneak Peek at the 2nd Edition Cover for Email Marketing Rules

4 Keys to Improving the Subscriber Journey with Progressive Profiling

Summer Edition of the Email Marketer’s Holiday Planning Checklist

Crowd Favorites from the Swipe File: July 2014

Gmail’s Native Unsubscribe Link: The Upside and Downside

July Review & August Preview for the 2014 Email Marketing Holiday Calendar

The Last Word on July 2014


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