How to Build Your First Email Marketing Machine?

So you are a start up or just got introduced to email marketing and you want to dive deep.

Listen up. Pay close attention. If there is one thing you want to take with you, then let this be it.  This will make it or break it for you.

There are mainly two types of emails:

  • Transactional
  • Marketing Emails.

Transactional Emails

These are emails that are sent out after certain actions trigger them. When a customer signs up, changes the password, etc., emails are sent out confirming that transaction.

Transactional emails often also contain new sales messages. Studies have shown that transactional emails are opened 51.3% of the time, while newsletters are only opened 36.6% of the time.

Knowing that they have a captive audience, marketers will often try to insert new sales pitches into emails that are not explicitly for selling. For example, airline reservation emails often ask if you would like to upgrade your seat for a fee.

These are easy to create and most companies send transactional emails. What comes next though is a game changer.

Marketing Emails

For every $1 spent, email marketing generates $38 with an ROI of 3800%.


There are many reason for this high ROI. I will give you at least three:

  • Pull vs Push
  • Journey vs Event
  • Signal vs Noise.

Pull vs Push

Most of advertising forms push ads on people’s faces left and right. Most of the time, it is irrelevant. This is why we have developed ad blindness.

On the other hand, Inbound / Email Marketing pulls attention and attracts only interested audience first then communicated a relevant message towards a specific goal.

It is like the right message to the right people at the right time.

Image credit: Hubspot


Journey vs Event
Do you remember how you Moreover, Email Marketing looks

Most websites and their owners treat site visitors as one time events. Are you one of them?

It is like going on a date and asking for a marriage right away. This would sound creepy, wouldn’t?

You want to sell your product now. You want to offer your service today. We get it.

It is totally fine that we should generate revenue and earn a profit to keep doing what we do. However, just focusing on the money today is a short term approach.

There is a better way. Before we jump on to it, let’s put ourselves into the shoes of your visitors.

When was the last time you purchased something online? Did you go to an online shop and ordered right away? Unless, you already know the product and this online shop in advance, this rarely happens. Hence, the 2% conversion rate.

Besides, depending on the product or service, it may take a short or long time to make a decision.

Email Marketing takes this into account. Instead of trying to persuade the visitor to buy today, you can educate and guide your buyer thru the journey.

Image credit: Hubspot


Signal vs Noise

Last but not the least, it is signal vs noise. While your ads are consumed among all the noise on the web and social networks, email could be quite personal one to one experience.

Successful email marketing has the following 3 components work hand in hand:



It is your Free Trial offer for your service, your whitepaper, ebook with valuable content or anything offers a great value for your potential clients. They will provide their email address in exchange for your hook.



This is the second and most important step in a successful email marketing campaign. Instead of selling your product, educate and guide them thru the buyer’s journey. It is not about you, your product or service. Remember people don’t need a drill, they need a hole in the wall.

It is all about your buyer and their journey. What concerns do they have? Where are they in the journey? How can you help them move forward from awareness to consideration then to decision stage?



This may be the last, but the most important stage. Many entrepreneurs are not very fond of this stage. I was not either to be honest. There is good news!

If you did your homework properly in attracting the right people to your funnel and educating them with the right message, at this point all you have to do is offer your product.


This is all nice and dandy. But how does it work?

Glad you asked 🙂 We are sharing a case study so you can see how we put all we learnt into practice. Ready?


Case Study: Cloudy.Email
We think the best way to demonstrate it to share what we did with our own startup. It is like tasting your own medicine or walking the walk.

In our case, we offer our free trial with 100.000 free emails as a hook. We sincerely believe 100K Free Emails combined with no monthly fees and unlimited contacts as well as pay as you starting at $1 for 1.000 emails is the best deal you can get out there for email marketing. We checked it 🙂

After a potential customer signs up, we start the education process. We will send 1 email each day for 7 days. After 7 days, they will get our weekly blog articles about email marketing tips and tricks.

Below you will find more about the specific purpose of each email in detail.

Day 1: Why: Story & Vision
The first email is sent right after they sign up.


100.000 Free Emails Inside



  • Thank, welcome and acknowledge
    We thank for joining Cloudy.Email and welcome them in 1-2 sentences.
  • Acknowledge
    We acknowledge our 100.000 Free Emails and how to start using the free credits.
  • Set Expectations
    We let them know that we will be sending daily emails for the next 7 days to get to know each other and help them get on board on Cloudy.
  • Tell Your Story
    We briefly share our story how it all got started and about our team.
  • What is your story?
    Last, but not the least, we asked them to share their story as well. Not only to be nice, but we really want to know who our customers so we can serve them better.


Day 2. How: Features & Benefits

The second email is sent after 1 day. In this email we share more about Cloudy.Email features and benefits.


Just In Case You Missed



  • Share features and benefits of Cloudy
  • Share how we are different: low cost, high open rates & live customer support
  • Ask for a feedback for improvement


Day 3. What: Problem & Solution
On Day 3, we send an email on one of the most challenging issues of sending email at large scale and how we are solving it with Cloudy.

In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.


  • Outline the issue: most email software companies charge monthly fees based on email list size
  • It can get very expensive quickly based on your list size
  • How Cloudy is tackling this challenge by disruptive pricing


Day 4. Account Setup with Amazon Web Services
On Day 4, we guide the customer via video tutorial how they can sign up for a free AWS account since Cloudy is built on Amazon infrastructure..


Every great journey starts with a single step


  • Guide the customer to setup the free AWS Account


Day 5. Upload List

On day 5, we focus on helping the customer to upload their email contacts on Cloudy.

This is The Beginning of a Beautiful Friendship 🙂



  • Guide the customer to upload their first list of emails
  • Show how they can upload email lists manually or via CSV files


Day 6. Create Campaign

On day 6, our main focus is to help the customer create their first email campaign and send it.

How to choose a cheap email marketing software?

You have got mail!


  • Guide the customer to create the first email campaign
  • Introduce email templates and how they can use them to create campaigns
  • Help them Send campaigns at once or schedule them for a later date and time


Day 7. Follow Up

On the last day of the onboarding emails, we will follow up with the customer and offer help if they are stuck at any stage.

It is a date.


  • Follow up with the customer and ask for their experience
  • Offer help via one to one meeting
  • Offer a link where they can book a time with Cloudy team member


Day 8 and onwards

By this time, most of our customers who are interested in Cloudy and have time and resources, will be on board. At the same time, we understand that there will be still some potential customers who could benefit from Cloudy.

From Day 8 and onwards, we will keep sending them our weekly blog updates by sharing valuable content about email marketing and how they can utilize it and grow their business.

I hope you found this article useful. Not any startup is the same. Each company will have a unique set of challenges. Your job is to outline them and find a solution that fits.

We entrepreneurs are pretty good at this. Please, let me know how you benefited from this article and most important how you are using this to grow your startup.

About the author

Co-founder of Cloudy.Email

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