8 Powerful B2B Email Marketing Ideas

B2B email marketing is one of the most effective tools around. Nearly nine in ten say they use email as a content distribution channel and eight in ten say email newsletters are their top choice for nurturing leads, per Content Marketing Institute surveys.

However, it’s still one of the most underutilized forms of B2B marketing. Below, I’ll go over some business-to-business email marketing tips and ideas, so you can begin amplifying your campaigns right away.

What is B2B Email Marketing and Why is it Important?

Email marketing has an average ROI of $36 for every $1 spent per Litmus research. It’s also one of the most affordable tools for B2B marketers, often costing pennies for each person reached. It’s also versatile and offers the opportunity to engage your audience, boost loyalty, and increase sales. This is why I refer to it as “Ground Fruit” in the “Climbing the Digital Marketing Tree,” meaning it’s an initiative that brands should integrate into their digital marketing strategies early on.

8 Powerful Ideas to Boost Your B2B Email Marketing Strategy

Even if you understand the value of B2B email marketing, coming up with inventive ways to reach your audience and finding effective email marketing examples can be a challenge. Use these eight ideas as inspiration as you establish your strategy.

1. Welcome Emails

Welcome emails are usually part of an automated series that’s sent whenever people sign up for your mailing list. For example, the first one is usually triggered by the subscribe or double opt-in. The second may arrive a day or two later. After that, they tend to be spread out a bit more. The total number of emails in your series is up to you. Experiment with what works best for your subscribers both in terms of total emails and timeframe, and be aware that different types of subscribers will respond in unique ways, so it’s ideal to segment them right away whenever possible.

Each letter in your welcome series should focus on a different topic, and you may want to consider sending them from different people in your organization. For example, the first may be a general welcome to build excitement and come from your CEO.

Use your welcome series to:

  • Thank the subscriber for opting in or congratulate them for taking the first step.
  • Remind them why they signed up. Provide them with a sense of community or belonging.
  • Give them their next steps. Include an offer or freebie they can claim right away if possible.
  • Showcase what makes your brand different and reinforce your branding/ core messaging.
  • Introduce them to other ways they can engage with your brand, such as social media or your app.
  • Provide general company details, such as contact information, location, and hours of operation.

2. Survey Emails

Surveys are a great way to engage your audience and keep them engaged. Your email platform or CRM may already have a survey program included. If not, you can easily run one through Google Forms or a similar free program.

Consider using survey emails for:

  • Opinions on upcoming products or features.
  • Topics your audience would like covered in webinars or other content.
  • Feedback on the customer experience.

3. Reengagement Campaigns

Some people on your lists will eventually go dormant. You must remove the inactive subscribers to keep your lists clean. If you aren’t doing this, it can impact whether your active subscribers receive your emails. That doesn’t necessarily mean you should just wordlessly remove the inactive ones though. This is where reengagement campaigns come in. Use them as an opportunity to get inactive subscribers to engage with you again before you remove them from your lists.

Most reengagement campaigns consist of a series of four emails, but you can experiment with what works best for your audience.

  • Email 1: Remind your subscriber why they signed up, let them know they’re inactive, and tell them that you’re still here to help them.
  • Email 2: Incentivize your subscriber to return. Consider giving a discount, free delivery, access to something exclusive, or whatever works best for you and your audience. Be sure to set a hard deadline for the promotion.
  • Email 3: Just before the deadline hits, send a reminder that their promotional offer is about to expire. You can create more urgency with a countdown timer or imagery to showcase how much time they have left.
  • Email 4: Say goodbye. Let them know that you’ve unsubscribed them due to inactivity and don’t want to send unwanted emails. Include a link for them to resubscribe if they choose to do so in the future.

4. Announcement Emails

Have fresh information to share with your audience that can help build hype and excitement for your brand? Send out some announcement emails.

A few reasons to send announcement emails include:

  • New product releases.
  • New feature additions.
  • Pre-order availability and back-in-stock notices.
  • Company updates, such as new hours or location openings.

5. Webinar Invitations and Event Planning Emails 

Most brands send out invites by default when they’re the ones hosting an event, but few will leverage third-party events as an opportunity to network. Let your audience know when you’re participating in a conference or similar and tell them how to get in touch with you there.

6. Event Newsletters

Particularly if you have strong list segmentation, or your list contains only people interested in the events you attend and host, consider sharing newsletter recaps. Your audience will appreciate getting the inside scoop, and it will build you up as a thought leader or authority on the topics covered.

7. Cross-Promotion

Cross-promotion emails are all about spreading awareness for your brand’s channels and deepening engagement with your audience. If you’ve ever shopped for clothing online while you were logged in, you’ve probably received an email that said something akin to, “Still looking at this?” At the bottom of the email, there was likely a selection of similar items or items that coordinate with it. This approach works for all brands, not just retailers, but the type of content featured varies.

For example, you can include links to your website, blogs, and social media accounts. If you have segmentation by interest, job role, or similar, you can create curated emails with content to suit the segment. If you have more sophisticated tracking in place, you can tailor the content to something the person has already engaged with too.

8. Case Study and Whitepaper Emails

Case studies and whitepapers are longer pieces that often include research and showcase a brand as an authority on the subject. They’re often used as top-of-funnel content to encourage people to sign up for mailing lists, but you can get much more mileage from them by sending them to select audiences too. For example, if someone has not purchased from your company or has not done so in some time, a case study or whitepaper may remind them why they should. Depending on the content, your current clients may also appreciate the info.

Get Help Amplifying Your Digital Marketing Results

As a digital marketing consultant with a background in business, I understand how important it is for brands to get ROI from their marketing initiatives. That’s why email marketing is something I integrate at the start of each project. I also finetune campaigns to improve their effectiveness and ensure that technical aspects, such as clean lists to ensure deliverability, are addressed. If you’re not getting the results you deserve from your digital marketing efforts or want to amplify the results you’re receiving, contact me for a complimentary consultation.

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Husam Jandal

Husam Jandal is an internationally renowned business and marketing consultant and public speaker with a background that includes training Google Partners, teaching e-business at a master's level, receiving multiple Web Marketing Association Awards, and earning a plethora of rave reviews from businesses of all sizes.

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