The Art of Community Building With Email Marketing


Email marketing is unparalleled in its value for maintaining close customer relationships. That’s why, even in the age of social media, businesses still invest in it. But is it all about sending promotions and newsletters? And is a boilerplate approach to email marketing enough? It isn’t if your goal is to build a sustainable brand. That requires a group of loyalists and meaningful connections with customers. That’s why you must map an email marketing community building strategy. That way, you can: 

  • Differentiate your brand with something that goes beyond a mere customer-business relationship.
  • Keep them engaged with personalized content and offers to build loyalty
  • Target the right people to enrich your community
  • Enhance trust with consistent email communication 

So, today, we decode the art of community building with effective email marketing. 

Importance of Community in Building Brand Loyalty

To give you more perspective into why community building is crucial for long-term business strategy, here are some benefits it yields: 

Foster Emotional Connection

There are likely tens of alternatives for every product you offer. Vouchers and offers aren’t enough to make customers choose you over others. You must forge powerful emotional connections that keep them hooked on your brand. 

That’s what community building does. It creates memorable and shared experiences and offers a sense of belonging, which leads to brand loyalty. 

Encourage Brand Advocacy

Gimmicky commercials don’t build customer appeal. Today’s savvy buyers want a brand with a proven track record of exceptional customer experience. 

Building a community can move them from customers to advocates. They get excited sharing this experience with peers, improving brand advocacy. It acts as a social proof and makes it much easier to increase consumer trust.

Enhance Customer Satisfaction

Community building creates opportunities for customers to connect with like-minded people through shared experiences and become a part of your brand’s story. This elevates their shopping experience and satisfaction. You also get a peek into what the customers need and implement that to elevate customer satisfaction further.

Provide Personalized Experiences

A thriving community lets you stay in touch with evolving customer needs, demands, and challenges without spending much of your startup budget. You get valuable insights into what attracts each customer segment to your brand, refine buyer profiles, and personalize their experiences in more detail. 

Increase Trust and Credibility

Community building generates an organic buzz and enhances your credibility as a brand. Seeing the love your community members have for you makes it easier for new customers to trust your services. 

But how do you build a community with email marketing? Let’s find out:

6 Ways To Build A Community With Email Marketing

1. Define What Community Means to You

A strategy only works when it has a definite purpose. So, start your community-building journey by understanding what community means to you and what you want to achieve through it. Here are some questions you must answer: 

  • What value will your community add to your members? 
  • What are their needs and interests? 
  • What are the key demographics that are most likely to join your community? 

These insights will guide your plan and keep email marketing aligned with community-building goals. 

You must set SMART goals for your community-building email activities. How many subscribers are you hoping to target initially? How much growth are you expecting in a specific period? This will keep your efforts focused on tangible results. Your community-building objectives also depend on your business’s type and industry. 

For content creators, the ideal purpose of community building through email marketing could be sending timely updates about their process or everyday experiences with fans. However, a B2B SaaS company can use it to share feature updates, resources, and exclusive offers with community members. 

2. Create a Welcome Email Campaign 

A strong community is defined by the belongingness it creates. You can achieve it via email marketing. 

Create a welcome email campaign that makes the recipient feel included from the start. Segment your email list and create customer personas. This will help you create welcome pitches enticing individual categories to engage with your community. 

Address the recipient by their first name and mention your community name in the headline. Express gratitude for joining the community to make them feel valued early on.

The welcome email should outline what members can expect from the community. Communicate your goal and the engagement opportunities you will offer the members. 

The above welcome email from Frase is a perfect example of how to make new members feel appreciated. The subject line addresses the recipient, and the email copy expresses gratitude immediately and communicates how users can get started.

Offering new members a reward with the welcome email is also a good start towards building loyalty. It could be a discount code (like above), free resources, or exclusive access to special features as a token of appreciation.

3. Promote Your Business

Community-building emails are excellent tools for promoting events, products, and other initiatives without being too sales-y.

You can broadcast meet-up plans and exclusive webinars for community members. This way, they won’t miss any opportunity to engage with fellow fans, and you will maximize event participation. 

Since they already have enough interest in your brand to join the community, use these emails as upselling and cross-selling opportunities. 

For example, Moments uses emails to promote new product lines and generate more interest. These are typically accompanied by a discount to trigger an action further.

Moments email to promote new product

You can also share information on your upcoming events and offer early-bird access to your members. Offering discounts on the next purchase or a free upgrade to new versions can also enhance engagement within the community. 

Content creators can monetize your community by starting a print-on-demand business for member-exclusive merch. Showcase the swag in emails and add clear CTA buttons that direct readers to the product page. 

4. Give Your Community a Shoutout

Acknowledge your community members in your emails. It shows you value their contribution. Such recognition can validate their efforts and encourage further engagement.

Run a dedicated section about individual members in your weekly or monthly community newsletters. Seeing their names highlighted will strengthen their sense of belonging to the community. It’s a clever way to showcase how you value members and let them get to know each other better, fostering camaraderie within the community.

You can also ask members to submit and answer questions in your next email.

For example, Brooklin Nash answers freelancing questions in his “Dear Freelancer” newsletter and shares his experiences to guide freelancers. This creates a two-way conversation while building a dedicated audience for himself and Peak Freelance. 

Brooklin Nash Dear Freelancer newsletter

5. Maintain an Email Frequency

The secret to successful email campaigns is regularity. Regularity establishes expectations among your members and keeps the engagement flowing. Members know when to anticipate your messages, reducing their chances of missing emails. The result? Increased engagement. 

Consistent email frequency also keeps your brand on top of their mind and keeps them from disengaging from the community. 

However, the tricky part is perfecting the frequency. Overdoing it can feel spammy and frustrate members. But not sending enough emails won’t help with community building either. 

There is no fixed recipe to it. Different frequencies work for different communities. For example, RevGenius sends 1-2 emails daily to engage their large community of 36,000+ people in B2B sales, marketing, and customer success.

RevGenius community emailsHowever, start with weekly or monthly emails and monitor engagement metrics. A/B test various frequencies to see what works best for your community.

6. Finally, Personalize Your Emails

Personalization is key to consistent engagement. That’s why 69% of business leaders invest more in personalization, even when facing challenging economic headwinds. 

Community emails tailored to individual members can:

  • Generate higher open and click-through rates
  • Improve member engagement with relevant and targeted communication
  • Enhance brand loyalty and trust
  • Increase conversion rates

Tap into hyper-personalization to create one-of-a-kind experiences. Monitor even the slightest changes and track member activities. What type of content do they engage with the most? Which community activities generate the most excitement in individual segments? 

To hit the bullseye with personalized emails every time, constantly refine your email segments with the most up-to-date customer data and personalized communication accordingly. 

For example, Netflix has built a community of loyalists with extremely personalized emails tailored to users’ tastes. These emails usually recommend movies or series subscribers may like with a percentage of how much it matches their unique watching preferences.

Netflix has personalized emailsCollect feedback from each member and implement their suggestions in your personalization strategies. Feeling heard by their favorite brands will enhance loyalty further. 

In Conclusion: Email Marketing Community  Building

Building an email community takes patience. It requires consistent, personalized communication and dedication to making the members feel seen. Community building should have a clear purpose. Make the members feel included with appreciative welcome messages. Send email updates on upcoming product launches, events, and meet-ups. Give members a shoutout when possible. Of course, find a frequency that works for your community and keep at it. However, you can’t manually send emails to each member. This leaves a lot of room for error and may disrupt your frequency.  And last but not least – when you communicate with your followers, remember that it is your brand family! Remember to convey your message to them from the heart and make each message valuable to your readers. We wish you fun email marketing experiences!