5 Fundamental Practices to Improve Email Marketing ROI: Takeaways from the recent Neil Patel Webinar

Email is not dead...it's the driver behind your sales. For those looking to increase the ROI of their email marketing Neil Patel's latest webinar provides a roadmap. Here a 5 essential takeaways from the webinar.


Denis Logan

8/12/20236 min read

Full disclosure…I need a flashlight when navigating this digital world. A flashlight and a guide…and like a good guide because I'm neither classically nor technically trained when it comes to this stuff.

So, I seek out the best guides, and the best flashlights, to make my way through the digital landscape because it's necessary. The gig is up, if we don't up-skill ourselves to not only make sense of the internets many kaleidoscopic worlds, much less learn how to excel within its ecosystems, we'll get left in the dust.

A.I. says so.

Now that the “Blade Runner”, futuristic sense of urgency has been plugged into this post, let's dial it down a notch…I want to understand as much as possible about digital business because I'm a husband and a father (and a person) that just always feels like there isn't enough time. Not enough time for my wife, not enough time for my son, not enough time for myself (in no particular order because they are all equally important.) I've spent the better part of my working life in some form of service industry (15 years as a sports coach and the last 3 as the owner/operator of a pest control franchise).

I'm a Gen-Xer…which means my working cultural heritage centers around simple concept: I learned to make money linearly School, Job, Retirement…and a job was a place that you went to in order to make money.

I remember life without computers, or smartphones, or the internet…and I'm not “that” old…I'm 43…there's, technically, still a lot of time on my “working watch”.

I'm at that age where there's time to make a shift if I want to build an income stream that provides me with the time (and finances) to design the kind of life that I want…which I do.

I'm not a control freak, I just want control of my time.

To take back my time I'm building a digital business (cue the flashlights and guides for help.) Affiliate marketing is my channel of choice, but there are some fundamentals concepts necessary to all online business's…one of which is the importance of a sound email marketing strategy.

In the shuffle of building your business (websites, marketplaces, niches, social media posting cadences, etc.) connecting with your customers (or followers/email subscribers) is of extreme importance, and it's been validated that email remains the king in that area. As much as we think that email is dead, categorically it's not and the benefits of email marketing have to take center stage in conversations regarding marketing strategies.

It's crucial to your success in any digital business of your choice.

Neil Patel is a digital marketer (and master email marketer) well known for his strategies around digital marketing. He recently hosted a webinar on how to improve email marketing ROI (return on investment) and here are my top 5 takeaways from his webinar.

#1- Embrace the reality that “Email is not dead”

While the intent of this article is to highlight the “actionable” insights to improve the ROI of email marketing (and provide keys to establishing a framework around your email program) the number 1 takeaway from his webinar centers around a mindset shift. Repeatedly the message was driven home that “email is not dead” and it is imperative that we invest our time in our email marketing efforts.

On the topic of email marketing statistics Neil highlighted the projection of a 64% increase in revenues connected to email marketing campaigns between now and 2027. 64%!

While social media (Like TikTik, Instagram and other digital marketing channels) continue to be the brand establishing king, purchasing decisions happen at the email level. If social media is “personal”, email is “intimate” and it allows for you to express yourself (ironically) in ways that social media doesn't. When people provide you with their email address they're "letting you in".

Your email list is where transactions happen because it is where you can build the most trust.

#2- Personalization Personalize your Emails

Putting it simply, improving email ROI comes down to your emails being opened in the first place (#5 on this list will go through the “Open Rates Formula”). Of all the metrics that you should track regarding the effectiveness of your email campaign, Open Rates is high on the list, and it's been shown that 74% of people expect to see some form of personalization in the emails they receive. Dale Carnegie once said, “The sweetest word in the world to a person is their own name”. Following that sage advice, include people's names, both in the subject line and in the body of the email where it seems most appropriate. Most email marketing software contains a “personalization” function that will auto-populate a person's name based on the prompt in your template.

#3- Segment Your Lists If you drop “List Segmentation” into ChatGPT and ask for the definition, this is what it spits out:

“List segmentation refers to the practice of dividing a larger group of contacts or subscribers into smaller, more targeted segments based on specific characteristics, behaviors, or preferences. These segments are created to allow marketers to deliver more personalized and relevant content, offers, and communications to different groups within their audience.

Segmentation can be based on a variety of factors, including:

1. Demographics: Characteristics such as age, gender, location, income level, education, etc.

2. Psychographics: Attitudes, values, interests, and lifestyles of individuals.

3. Behavioral Data: How individuals interact with your brand, including their purchase history, website activity, engagement with emails, etc.

4. Purchase History: Previous buying behavior, types of products purchased, frequency of purchases, etc.

5. Engagement Level: How active or engaged subscribers are with your content and communications.

6. Preferences: Specific interests, product preferences, content format preferences (e.g., videos, articles), etc.

7. Lifecycle Stage: Where a subscriber or customer is in their relationship with your brand (e.g., new subscriber, loyal customer, inactive).” List Segmentation takes Personalization to another level as it isn't just about including a name. Now, you're applying context. It enables you to focus your message and round out the “Avatar” of the person, deepening your understanding of their persona and therefore providing to solutions to their specific challenges and pain points.

#4- Optimize Email Campaign Automation

Email deliverability and the consistency of delivery of a certain set of marketing emails is essentially what a campaign is, usually revolving around a certain product or launch. Nurture campaigns are utilized to develop a relationship with the recipient.

Most leads are “cold leads”, which generally means that the person has shown an interest in what you're presenting but is not familiar enough with “you” to make a purchasing decision. Email marketing campaigns will move them through the process of getting to know you.


Utilizing a form of email automation becomes critical to streamlining this process which is vital. Which automation software the cadence of delivery, the times at which emails are sent, and the capture of metrics all come into play.

#5- Master the “Open Rates Formula” If “Email is not dead” was the number one take home message, then personalizing both your emails and your whole approach was number two.

There are four main elements that influence email open rates, listed in order of importance:

1. Sender Name (them knowing who you are)

2. Email Subject Line

3. Offer

4. Info Paragraph

The top 2 elements that lead to someone opening your email have nothing to do with your offer! They have to do with their comfort and familiarity with who you are (46%) and if you've captured their attention with your subject line (34%). The offer and the body of the email combine for only 20% of whether they will open the email and act, or click, on what's being presented.

The old adage of “Know you, Like you, Trust you” rings true.

Neil's Formula for Opens and Clicks is:

Who x Relationship Level x Trust/Interest= Success Rate (conversion rate)

Get to know your customers, allow them to get to know you, learn to write killer email subject lines.

At times I feel crazy because so much of this seems like common sense…get to know the people you're communicating with (and present who you are) before progressing to promotional emails.

On the other hand, it's also good to know that communicating is not just happening on Facebook, or Instagram, or TikTok. Social media is incredibly important (and just might be a topic for another post) but the influence of email can't be emphasized enough.

Email is not dead.

It just needs a little light shone on it to get the most out of it.

Cue the flashlight.

Thanks for reading! If you're interested in affiliate marketing and utilizing it as a way to build an online business and create time freedom you should definitely check out the The Anti-Affiliate Model Free Masterclass. Click the link below for Access.

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