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What’s great email content look like, anyway?

As an email marketer, it’s easy to get bogged down in the nitty-gritty, day-to-day aspect of it all: segmenting your list, checking mailings for deliverability issues, optimizing for plain text and HTML… the list goes on.

But if you’re anything like me, you think this whole email thing can be pretty fun, too. Sure, those little details are what make for great response and conversion rates. But sometimes, you see a mailing that captures your attention for no reason other than the fact that it’s innovative, or interesting, or jaw-droppingly beautiful.

So here’s a tribute to a few of those campaigns that helped remind me why I love email. Check ‘em out!


Normally, I wouldn’t advocate for including this many paths in a single email… but here, it makes total sense: Recipients can quickly scan through, lock in on, and click the logo of their favorite team. I was taken by the timeliness, simplicity, and clean design of this NFL-themed send from Nike. (Plus, that image of Russell Wilson is endlessly cool.)

Uncommon Goods

To be fair, this grown-up take on the Lite-Brite is an awesome product in its own right. But Uncommon Goods did a fantastic job bringing it to light (eh?) in this dedicated email campaign. I absolutely loved the GIF in the header and the numbered list explaining how it works.


Birchbox is one of my biggest email marketing crushes, and for good reason: Everything they send is absolutely stunning, and they know how to stir up interest by including only the most essential details about whatever they’re promoting. A great example? This recent send for “Customer Appreciation Day,” with its bold “YOU” and single, focused CTA.


I just recently joined Keurig’s email list, but they’ve continued to impress me more and more with each mailing I receive. Their welcome email definitely set our relationship off on the right foot with a friendly greeting, a concise explanation of what to expect, and a link to their customer service portal in case I had any issues or questions about my first order.

Pei Wei

To be honest, the name “My Wei Rewards” tickled me more than it probably should have. But punny rewards programs aside, this is another fantastic welcome email. The sense of exclusivity “You’re in” denotes is amplified by a sweet reward: A free drink on them!

The Dessy Group

I absolutely ADORE seeing this sort of email out in the wild, and I haven’t seen anyone do it better than The Dessy Group. After noting my lack of engagement with previous mailings, they sent this one in the hope of doing better targeting and boosting their response rates. It’s an incredibly savvy move, and they did it so stylishly I couldn’t help but oblige.


I didn’t get this one in my personal inbox – I saw it after #emailgeek Eric Lepetit shared it on Twitter (Thanks, Eric!). But this is next-level stuff, even for a brand like Burberry, who consistently nails it with their email marketing. I absolutely love the engaging GIF in the header, and Eric’s initials add a nice, personalized touch to the experience.


I’m a sucker for a black email – probably because I don’t see them all that often. This one stood out when I was perusing the killer selections over at Really Good Emails (be sure to check them out if you haven’t before!). Even though there’s something fundamentally wrong about a $999 skateboard, there’s also something fundamentally right about this simple-but-bold teaser of an email.

The Black Tux

Another RGE find, I’m digging everything about this. First of all, the subject line was “Oh, S***” – which I find pretty clever for an email all about Snapchat. Plus, how can you resist CTAs like “Snap to it” and “Come on get snappy”? The whole mailing showcases a fantastic example of seamlessly integrating your presence on social and in the inbox.

Seen any gems in your own inbox recently? Share away in the comments!