Is Email Marketing Worth It?

Incoming message laptop person with a letter

While there are countless new apps and platforms for marketers to use, email marketing remains an irreplaceable tactic when it comes to reaching and engaging an audience effectively. Email marketing continues to thrive, outlasting much of the competition or trending apps due to its relevance, high success rate, and various strategies. Here, we will discuss the various aspects of email marketing and examine how it has evolved, as well as its benefits, challenges, and key components, to answer the question: Is email marketing worth it? 

The Evolution of Email Marketing

Email marketing was created in 1978 as a simple, text-based message. Over time, it has evolved into a sophisticated tool aimed at targeted communication. Email marketing allows marketing companies to send personalized, visually appealing emails optimized for tablets, desktops, and mobile devices. The email marketing revolution has been fueled by data analytics, automation technologies, and technological advancements that allow messages to be more customized and personal. No other major digital marketing tactic has been so relevant for so long, making the question is email marketing worth it easy to answer. Email marketing is definitely worth it for businesses in any industry to communicate with your audience, add an additional touchpoint, personalize your messages, and remain top of mind. 

Is Email Marketing Worth It: The Benefits and Challenges

Like all platforms, nothing is perfect. Email marketing does have its benefits and challenges. Keep reading to learn more. 


There are numerous benefits associated with email marketing. While we’ve discussed some above, here we will break them down even further. 


Email marketing is known for its high return on investment (ROI). In fact, for every $1 spent on email marketing, markets make $42, which is an ROI of 4,200%. This ROI makes email marketing one of the most effective marketing channels currently available to marketers. The ROI is so high due to the low cost of sending emails and utilizing email platforms compared to other marketing methods with higher upfront costs, like direct mail or paid advertising. 

Targeting and Personalization

As discussed above, one of the greatest strengths of email marketing is the ability to address the individual. You can personalize the email and create drip funnels so specific emails only go to the users who need them, and you can send them at times when engagement is the highest. Email marketing allows marketers to create messages that resonate with different demographics and customer personas rather than trying to fit everyone’s psychographics and demographics into one or two ads. This significantly improves engagement rates and builds a stronger customer relationship. 

Measurability and Analytics

Email marketing offers unique insights into how your messages are interacted with once the user opens them. The most popular metrics are click-through rate, unique open rate, and conversion rate, which allow marketers to measure what did and didn’t work and make data-driven decisions moving forward. Open rates used to be one of the most important metrics for email marketing; however, in recent years, it has become less meaningful regarding long-term success. Now, marketers focus more on their organization’s unique open rates and other essential metrics. 

Customer Retention

Beyond the ability to send more tailored messages, email marketing also has a high customer retention rate since they are an ideal message type for nurturing leads after initial contact. Your business can send follow-up emails, loyalty programs, birthday specials, or monthly newsletters to keep the brand top of mind and encourage repeat business. 

Wide Reach

Most people have an email and check it at least once daily, making it an integral part of daily life. With billions of email users worldwide, email marketing offers a vast platform for a business to expand its reach, visibility, and customer base. 


Now that we’ve discussed some of the top benefits of email marketing, it’s time to discuss the challenges and determine is email marketing worth it for your organization. 

Deliverability Issues

Getting your emails to land successfully in the recipient’s inbox and not spam can be challenging due to robust filters and constantly updated algorithms. This year’s DomainKeys Identified Mail update (DKIM) was the most recent significant change that impacted email marketers. If your organization uses email marketing, keeping audience lists clean and engagement high across sendings is essential to avoid being flagged as spam. 

Overcrowded Inboxes

With the average person receiving 121 emails daily, finding ways to make your content unique enough to stand out can be challenging. Email marketing teams must be creative and deliver value to ensure emails are opened and read. A great way to do this is to A/B test subject lines, sending times, or even the content itself to see what works best with your audience and use that data moving forward. Also, emails are not just about the content; no one wants to open an email that isn’t visually appealing or takes too long to load. Be sure to work with a designer to create a template that has your branding, is optimized for various platforms, and is easy to navigate. 

Regulations and Compliance

Email marketers must also navigate the landscape of increasing regulation, such as GDPR in Europe and CAN-SPAM in the U.S., which dictate how businesses can collect, store, and use a user’s email address. Ensuring your organization is compliant is vital to avoid fines and maintain customer trust. 

Essential Components of a Successful Email Marketing Campaign

Before designing an email campaign, it’s essential to understand the critical components. 

Effective Email Design

Good design is crucial, as we touched upon above. Emails must be visually appealing, easy to read, not too text-heavy, and be readable across devices and platforms. The use of responsive design ensures that your emails look good on any screen. 

Strong Content Strategy

Despite the importance of the visual aspects of an email marketing campaign, content is still king. Ensure you provide high-value content that educates, entertains, or informs. No matter how pretty your email is, it won’t be opened again if you’re not providing quality content. 

Opt-In Strategies

Building a list of subscribers who have opted in to receive your emails is the foundation of a strong strategy. This not only ensures compliance with the above regulations but also improves engagement rates since the people who receive the emails are excited to read them. Having an extensive list of subscribers but with low engagement serves no purpose; you only send emails to those who want to engage. 

It’s also best to clean those lists periodically. Many platforms can do it for you based on various factors, such as users who haven’t engaged in the last five campaigns, users who haven’t clicked any campaign, etc. 

Testing and Optimization

Continuously test different aspects of your campaign. Not just subject lines and things of that nature but also in your test emails to make sure everything is populating correctly. Once your template is in a good place and you are ready for your campaign set-up, you can determine what you want to test. Testing is crucial since it will allow you to better understand your audience and improve performance over time to avoid stagnant results. 


Emails shouldn’t be alone as a strategy. The best marketing utilizes integration, so be sure to connect blogs, social media posts, TikTok videos, webinars, and more to your content to amplify your reach and reinforce your message. 

Optimize Your Email Marketing with Online Optimism

Have you answered the question, is email marketing worth it yet? Considering its adaptability, cost-effectiveness, and powerful targeting capabilities, it is an integral tool for any digital marketer. Whether you’re a small business owner or a marketing professional, investing in email marketing is definitely worth it. If you want to optimize your email marketing strategy or want to build one from the ground up, contact Online Optimism! Our team is well-versed across platforms with regular campaigns, A/B testing, and drip funnels. 

Start reaping the benefits of email marketing today and partner with Online Optimism!