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Email Marketing Part 1: Email Marketing for Total Beginners

An introduction and thorough foundation to one of the world's most powerful and cost-effective marketing channels.
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Last updated 2/2015
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  • 5 hours on-demand video
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
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What Will I Learn?
Create effective marketing emails that get delivered, opened, read, and convert well
Understand the uses of various types of emails used in Email Marketing
Decide on the style, tone, format, and length of emails for your company
Choose the right Email Service Provider (ESP) for your small-medium business or enterprise
Build a marketing email list from scratch or add to an existing house list
Understand the best days and times to send emails, as well as how often to send emails
Avoid problems and thoroughly understand the legal and ethical issues associated with Email Marketing
Comply with CAN-SPAM laws
View Curriculum
  • This course assumes no prior knowledge of Email Marketing.
  • General business and marketing savvy is helpful but not required.

For Beginners Who Seek a SOLID FOUNDATION in Email Marketing

5 hrs, 12 min

Email Marketing is one of the most cost-effective and powerful marketing channels that has ever existed. Yet few businesses take full advantage of Email Marketing's full potential, which creates a huge opportunity for you and your business.

The first of a two-part series, this course (Part 1) is designed for anybody with zero to medium experience who wishes to develop a very strong foundation in Email Marketing, for uses including:

  • Self-employed, business owners, entrepreneurs, startups
  • Small to medium-sized businesses
  • Corporate marketing departments & enterprises
  • Agencies
  • Marketing consultants
  • E-commerce, SaaS & Web pure-play businesses
  • B2C & B2B companies
  • Bloggers & self-publishers

In today's world of social media-fueled online marketing, Email Marketing has become an often overlooked and underutilized channel for:

  • Customer acquisition
  • Lead generation & nurture marketing
  • Customer retention
  • Up-selling, cross-selling, and winning back lost customers
  • Connecting with your customers at a deeper level and staying "top of mind"

Modern Email Marketing is much more than building a list and firing off occasional batch-and-blast emails. Yet because many companies fail to take advantage of email's full potential, or fail to use even the full set of tools they're already paying for, there exists an opportunity to seize low-hanging fruit for any marketing professional who makes the decision to learn the basics of Email Marketing. This course lays the foundation for you to become an expert.

In this course, we start at the very beginning and quickly build up your knowledge of the "why" and "how-to" of Email Marketing, going deep into tactical detail in the areas that you need to know to become an expert, hands-on practitioner.

We also touch on more advanced topics so that you'll "know what you don't know," understand the full potential of Email Marketing, and provide a context for the more advanced topics covered in this course's sequel, Email Marketing Part 2: Advanced Email Marketing Mastery.

Intro music: Adam Lathrum "Digital Moon" (used with permission)

Who is the target audience?
  • This course is designed for individuals with anywhere from zero to intermediate experience with Email Marketing, who would like to develop a very strong foundation in this highly effective and often overlooked marketing channel. No technical skills are required.
  • Marketing professionals in organizations ranging from small businesses to enterprises will be able to apply the knowledge, skills, tactics, and industry best practices taught in this course.
  • The course material, examples, and tips cover all varieties of Email Marketing use cases, including B2C, B2B, e-commerce sites, offline businesses, bloggers, Fortune 500, startups, and other businesses in virtually any industry.
  • Anybody interested in learning the techniques, tips, and tricks used by two 20-year industry veterans and best-selling authors who've helped top national brands build their house email lists to over a million subscribers.
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Curriculum For This Course
Expand All 40 Lectures Collapse All 40 Lectures 05:07:55
Course Introduction
1 Lecture 08:02

In this introduction, we explain why Email Marketing can give you a competitive edge and we describe the topics that will be covered in the course.

Preview 08:02
Types of Email Marketing
6 Lectures 39:55

This lecture explains what email marketing is and categorizes the different types of emails that are used.

Preview 04:14

This lecture goes into detail describing three important types of marketing emails:

  • Promotional emails
  • Newsletters & content-heavy emails
  • Event announcements & invitations
Email Types: Promotional, Newsletters/Content, Event Invitation & Announcements

This lecture explains what transactional event-triggered emails are and provides examples.

Automated Emails: Transactional

This lecture explains what non-transactional event-triggered emails and provides examples of how such emails can be used for:

  • Cross-selling
  • Up-selling
  • Winning back lost customers
Automated Emails: Non-transactional

This lecture defines and explains the differences between:

  • Nurture marketing
  • Drip campaigns
  • Auto-responders

We provide an example of a 4-email drip campaign.

Nurture & Drip Marketing Emails (Auto-Responders)

This lecture describes additional terminology related to Email Marketing:

  • Batch-and-blast
  • Targeted emails
  • One-to-one marketing
Additional Terminology
How to Choose the Right Email Service Provider
4 Lectures 32:26

This lecture explains what Email Service Providers (ESPs) are, how they work, and the reasons that most serious Email Marketers use them, broken into the following categories:

  • Workflow & efficiency
  • Capabilities
  • Deliverability
What Is an ESP, and Why You Probably Need One

This lecture briefly surveys some of the more common features available in many Email Service Providers, including:

  • Subscriber management features
  • Email creation features
  • Social media tools
  • Campaign scheduling
  • List segmenting
  • A/B testing
  • Analytics
  • CRM integration
How to Choose an ESP: Features

This lecture frames the issue of selecting an Email Service Provider in terms of:

  • Features
  • Cost
  • Deliverability
  • Reputation
How to Choose an ESP: Continued

This lecture goes into depth explaining the various tiers and methods of pricing used by Email Service Providers, including:

  • Low cost options
  • Flat rate pricing
  • CPM & per-email pricing
  • Recommendations for small businesses
  • Recommendations for larger businesses/enterprises
  • Tips for negotiating to get the best price

Additional ESP Recommendations (PDF)

We also provide an updated list of specific names and descriptions of our recommended ESPs for:

  • Entry level
  • Standard businesses
  • Enterprise & high-volume email senders
ESP Costs
Building Your Email List
4 Lectures 22:33

This list explains the steps and provides tips for maximizing the effectiveness of email address captures forms on your Web site.

Email Signup Forms

This lecture briefly summarizes some of the more common tactics for driving traffic to your email signup forms and goes into depth in two low-cost tactics in particular:

  • Free giveaways
  • Guest blogging

Resource: Free Tools for Checking Any Web Site's PageRank

This lecture, in the context of securing guest blogging opportunities, mentions the need to ascertain a target blog's importance using PageRank.

Here are just a few options (Google "pagerank checker" for many more options):

Web sites:

Chrome plugins:

Firefox add-ons:

If you find any broken links above, please notify us (the course instructors).

Driving Traffic to Your Site - Common Tactics

This lecture suggests additional ways to build your email list using:

  • Social media & sharing
  • Offline venues
Driving Traffic to Your Site - Social Media & Offline Venues

This lecture describes what to do if you already have an email list to start with, as well as what to do if you haven't emailed to your list in a while.

Already Have an Email List?
Opting In, Spam, Third-Party Lists, and Other Legal Concerns
4 Lectures 29:59

This lecture defines spam and explains opting in, including:

  • Implied permission
  • Explicit permission
  • Confirmed permission (double opt-in)
  • Relationship & transactional emails
Opting In & Spam: Definitions

This lecture explains how to comply with the 2003 U.S. federal CAN-SPAM law, including:

  • Unsubscribe compliance
  • Content compliance
  • Sending behavior compliance

This lecture explains the problems and high risks associated with emailing to third-party lists (i.e., sending to people who have not opted in to receive emails from you directly).

Third-Party Lists

This lecture discusses other legal concerns that all Email Marketers should be aware of, including:

  • Emailing to children
  • Emailing outside the U.S.
  • Privacy
  • Security
  • Intellectual property
Other Legal Concerns
How to Create Great Emails - Part 1
11 Lectures 01:32:06

In this lecture, we'll discuss the using your emails' tone to enhance and extend your company's brand, while also connecting more closely with customers.

Overview, Branding & Tone

In this lecture, we'll discuss the different email format options and the advantages and disadvantages of short versus long-form emails, with suggestions for discovering your emails' optimal length.

Email Style & Format

In this lecture, we'll explain the pros and cons of sending HTML versus simple text emails.

Emails: HTML vs. Simple Text

In this lecture, we introduce the subject of the next several lectures: Anatomy of an Email. We briefly define important terminology related to the parts of an email and we dive deep into effective use of the "from" line.

Anatomy of an Email

A continuation of Anatomy of an Email, we begin the first of three lectures on writing effective subject lines.

Subject Lines - Part 1 - Length & Guidelines

A continuation of Anatomy of an Email, the second of three lectures on writing effective subject lines.

Subject Lines - Part 2 - Email Type, Brand & Tone

A continuation of Anatomy of an Email, the last of three lectures on writing effective subject lines, with examples from twelve categories to help you generate creative ideas.

Subject Lines - Part 3 - Creative Ideas & Examples

This lecture is the final installment of Anatomy of an Email, with coverage of your emails':

  • Salutation
  • Body
  • Closing
  • Signature
  • Footer
Salutation, Body, Closing, Signature, and Footer

This lecture provides guidelines for ensuring that your HTML emails are constructed properly to display in different email clients and on different devices.

HTML Email Guidelines

This lecture provides real-world examples of HTML emails of several email types:

  • Transactional email
  • Announcement/invitation email
  • Drip email
  • Newsletter - simple text
  • Newsletter - blogger, graphics, using ESP template
HTML Email Examples - Transactional, Announcement, Drip & Newsletters

A continuation of real-world HTML email examples:

  • E-commerce, personalized data
  • Light use of graphics
  • Light use of graphics - multiple products
  • Light use of graphics - dramatic design
  • E-commerce, long-form
HTML Email Examples - E-commerce & Light Use of Graphics
How to Create Great Emails - Part 2
4 Lectures 32:26

In this lecture, we explain how to avoid having your emails get stuck in ISPs' spam filters, including:

  • Spam checker tools
  • Text-to-image ratio
  • Multi-part email guidelines
  • Subject line spam filter triggers
  • Spam filter trigger words
Avoiding Spam Filters: Designing for Deliverability

This is the first of two lectures that explain how to create compelling emails that encourage your subscribers to click through. In this lecture, we cover:

  • How to create value
  • How to generate a desire to click through
  • Teasers
  • Effective promotions
Clickthrough: Designing Emails That Convert - Value, Teasers & Promotions

This is the second of two lectures that explain how to create compelling emails that encourage your subscribers to click through. In this lecture, we dive deep into:

  • Creating effective calls-to-action (CTAs)
Clickthrough: Designing Emails That Convert - Effective Calls-to-Action

In this lecture, we discuss the role of writing ability in Email Marketing and explain how you can be an effective Email Marketer even if you're not a great writer.

What If You Can't Write?
The Best Times to Send Emails
5 Lectures 45:28

In this lecture, we discuss the best days to send emails, including:

  • Industry averages
    • Email volume
    • Open rates
    • Clickthrough rates
  • Hints from your analytics
  • Special case: B2B
  • Different days for different email types
  • Timing emails for promoting events
  • Special days to avoid
The Best Days to Send Emails

In this lecture, we discuss the best (and worst) times of day to send emails, including discussion of:

  • Mornings
  • Afternoon
  • Evening/night
  • Industry averages
    • Open rates
    • Transaction (conversion) rates
  • Special case: B2B
  • Special case: Mobile users
The Best Times of Day to Send Emails

The first of three lectures, we discuss how often to send emails, including consideration of:

  • Frequency vs. relevance
  • Setting expectations
How Often to Send Emails - Relevance and Expectations

The second of three lectures, we discuss how often to send emails, including consideration of:

  • Newsletters & content emails
  • Quarterly
  • Monthly
  • Weekly
  • Daily
  • Alert emails
  • Multiple emails per week
How Often to Send Emails - Newsletters & Content Emails

The third of three lectures, we discuss how often to send emails, including consideration of:

  • Hints from analytics
  • Consistency
  • When to break the pattern
  • Advanced techniques
How Often to Send Emails - Optimizing Frequency
1 Lecture 05:00

In this lecture, we list the topics that will be covered in the sequel to this course, Email Marketing Part 2: Advanced Email Marketing Mastery.

Conclusion & Preview of Email Marketing Part 2

Now let's test your knowledge about email marketing.

Email Marketing for Total Beginners
16 questions
About the Instructor
5.0 Average rating
2 Reviews
46 Students
1 Course
Strategy consultant

Greg Helmstetter is the author of two best-selling books: "Increasing Hits & Selling More on Your Web Site" (1997) and "Affiliate Selling: Building Revenue on the Web" (co-author, 2000). He co-founded two Silicon Valley startups: CrossCommerce and myGoals[dot]com, featured internationally by hundreds of media outlets. Greg has been interviewed by CNN, CNNfn, the New York Times, Time, Newsweek, USA Today, Wall St. Journal, CBS Early Show, NPR, BBC, and Rolling Stone. He has served on Cold Stone Creamery's Brand Advisory Board and Amazon's patent defense team, advises numerous technology startups, and currently sits on a USA Today panel of business leaders who provide insights into trends for the newspaper.

Greg is a partner at Monsoon Strategy, whose clients range from startups to Global Fortune 100 in industries including e-commerce/Internet, software, retail, consumer packaged goods, financial services, healthcare, aerospace, scientific/industrial, defense, and higher education.

He received his MBA in Marketing from the Wharton School in 1995.

5.0 Average rating
2 Reviews
46 Students
1 Course
Partner, Monsoon University

Pamela began her career developing product design specifications for hospitality management, banking, and enterprise CRM systems. In 1998, she co-founded and helped build one of the world's first social bookmarking sites (in Silicon Valley) five years before del[dot]icio[dot]us was founded. Prior to that, she developed one of the world's first online banking applications. Pamela was a co-founder of myGoals[dot]com and the lead author of the Amazon bestseller "Affiliate Selling: Building Revenue on the Web" (John Wiley & Sons, 2000). This book has been published in four languages and used as a textbook in the Stanford MBA program.

Pamela has extensive experience in affiliate marketing, strategic partnerships, search marketing, e-commerce conversion optimization, social media, and product marketing. She learned the ropes while looking for ways to monetize her own startups, by directing marketing channels at drugstore[dot]com, and by launching and optimizing online channels for Monsoon Strategy clients for over 20 years.

Pamela has developed numerous business and marketing courses for universities and is now excited about focusing on creating courses that help others achieve their business and career goals.

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