Email Marketing still is one of the most powerful tools businesses have to bring profits, but still causes a few problems here and there.

Even with everything that is said about it in 2020, it represents a big chunk of the market value. It’s capable of bringing 4400% ROI = $44 for every $1 spent.

But you must know that already. You are probably here today, because you actively use it, and still suffer from the 9 most common problems I’m going to mention in this list.

Without further adieu… Let’s get started.

Email Marketing Problem #1 – Not using Email Marketing Or Starting Late

Probably the most costly and common mistake is simply not starting with email soon enough. 

Are you investing in SEO and Social Media?

You probably feel that email marketing is too old-fashioned. Which you’re probably right.


But even if you aren’t planning to start or just keep overthinking it, maybe the following stats will change your mind:

  1. 61% of consumers prefer to be contacted by brands through email.

  2. 90% of email gets delivered to the intended recipient’s inbox, whereas only 2% of your Facebook fans see your posts in their News Feed.

  3. You are 6x more likely to get a click-through from an email campaign than you are from a tweet.

  4. Email is 40 times more effective at acquiring new customers than Facebook or Twitter.

So you know now that it keeps working very well – when done correctly.

Doing it correctly is to immediately send a welcome email to your new subscribers (either manually or automatically).

Doing it correctly is to avoid all of the most common problems that you will read on this list.

Each one that you avoid or correct, adds to the odds of having a profitable business.

Email Marketing Problem #2 – Not Meeting Expectations (Sales-Heavy, Unprofessional, Generic)

Awesome. You take the next step and start using a Secure Email Marketing platform to connect with your subscribers. 

What’s next? Keeping up with the expectation and excitement they hold up to.

Now, to do so, it’s important to get the “subject” and “sender” right from the start.

The success of your email campaign depends entirely on these two elements. This will make the difference between “open” or “spam.”

a) Sender: your subscribers need to recognize who they are reading. So add the name of your company or personal brand, and do not change it; keep it congruent.

b) Subject: Copywriters follow a simple but powerful rule (make them read the headline, then the text below, then the next one below…). If they don’t get any interest in your headline, then the rest of that email is completely worthless.

Avoid sales-heavy language. And make it look unique and professional.

Being said, there’s one easy way to secure them into place, and continuing with readable information inside the email: Make it personal.

You don’t like to read stories that don’t relate to your own…And you don’t like to receive offers of products/services that don’t solve your problems, right?

You’re their friend. Not a salesperson. 

Don’t talk about your product, service, or company. Instead, talk about them.


And when the right time has come, m̶e̶n̶t̶i̶o̶n̶ show the benefits they can get from it.

If all of it sounds like too much work, that you can’t handle, there are many professionals that you can hire to create impactful emails for you. 

I can tell you for sure that either doing it yourself or along with a copywriter, you’ll see results. Even if your list only has 100 subscribers

Email Marketing Problem #3 – Waiting for the List to Grow Enough 

How much are “enough” subscribers for you to start?

I understand that you want to have a big audience, but please do not wait for a magical number to start talking to them. 

There’s a reason why: if they expect to hear from you, but they don’t get anything back… It lowers the engagement – harming the open rate for when you find the right time.

You might also lose the momentum that’s built even with the smallest email lists, where readers share what you send with other ideal prospects (if they find it interesting enough).  

Just approach that “small list” in a way you learn what they like and dislike, so you can have greater results when it grows big enough.

You will grow this list very soon… Right?

Email Marketing Problem #4 – Email List Not Growing

You will see it grow very soon, but isn’t happening yet.  What can you do about it?

More than you think.

Let’s say that you started to use email marketing, that you got your first subscribers, and that you have written a compelling “welcome” email.

Besides all of that which is controllable, there are other strategies you can use to guarantee a consistent list growth: 

  • Make it easy for them. Your subscription form/widget should be easy to detect and to quickly fill in.  If possible, add them to every website page that makes sense adding it, but also avoid spamming with infinite, intrusive pop-ups.

  • Discounts and Giveaways: These free incentives are smart leverages that can bring exponential results to your business’ email list, quickly. But do not over-promise. Make sure to deliver what they’re anticipating.

  • Social Media: These platforms are only worth it when done correctly. Its personalization can get you high-value leads, but just be aware that people go there to “socialize” and not to “subscribe” into your business’s email list. Play smart.

  • Online and Offline cross-pollination: Not every marketing channel will contain your ideal customers, but I do combine those that have them. 

Email Marketing Problem #5 – Too Many Email Subscribers 

This might seem contradictory, but managing a big email database it’s pretty difficult.

Are you having this email marketing problem as well? Take the following tips!

  • Detect and eliminate those inactive users that do not open or interact with your campaigns.

  • Set-up an Email Confirmation” to your sequence for those new subscribers. It will clear ideal prospects from tire-kickers.

  • Divide your subscribers into sublists: source, interest level, or specific product/service they want.

Up to this point, you should be seeing a higher ROI than when you just started. Still, up to this point, unexpected problems appear.

Email Marketing Problem #6 – Only Taking Haters Into Account 

When you reach a certain success level, it’s when you’ll notice haters coming.

While I’m not saying you should ignore them completely (because you can get good insights with their “feedback”), I do recommend to not strategize completely on their opinions.

If you receive 1 message (from 1,000 subscribers) saying to “stop selling your products/services”, would you listen to it? You could stop. But you shouldn’t.

At least not if you’re selling something genuinely valuable.

Marketing and Sales run similarly: You’ll find a lot of rejection if you want to make it big with it.

The best way to overcome this problem? Segment your audience, so you only talk with the right people. 

That solution also fits the subscribers that do want to hear from you.

Email Marketing Problem #7 – Annoying your Subscribers

Not segmenting and other mistakes can annoy your subscribers.

In the first place: are you sure you have their consent to email them? 

If you have it, great. If you don’t, stop emailing them. Sending commercial messages to “customers” that haven’t subscribed is spam, is illegal, and won’t provide good ROI.

While you may have the temptation to do so, believe me when I say it’s better to avoid it completely.

Funny enough, the same “annoyance” applies as well for those who agreed to receive them… Because sending too many emails overwhelms your subscribers. 

So, instead of forcing yourself to talk with them every X days, do it only when there’s something important to say. Considering their behavioral responses as a factor of “do I send this or not?”

And if for any reason they want to unsubscribe, you have to make it easy for them as well.

Doing the opposite will only get you flagged as spam and blocked (your entire sender account). This is the fastest way to not getting your message delivered at all.

Although, there’s another way that so many marketers ignore.

Email Marketing Problem #8 – Forgetting That Not Everyone Reads You From the Same Place 

Sure, mobile devices probably aren’t your #1 source of email readers, but they still represent a big part of it (and will keep growing.

The very least you can do to ensure someone opens your emails from other places (countries and devices), it’s to optimize your format for it. 

If your company runs internationally, it’s clear you’ll have to make your emails multi-language. At least, written specifically on the language of the country you promote to.

The same goes for a clean format for all possible devices: desktop, tablets, mobile devices, and Smart TVs.

Multimedia content is often what represents the most issues when you start optimizing to other devices. Make sure it’s eye-catching to your entire email list. 

How do you make sure it is? Testing.

Email Marketing Problem #9 – Not Testing. Avoiding Stats

Basically, confirming both links and images/videos are loading correctly.

Proofreading so there are no grammar or spelling mistakes. 

And last, but not least: Check your email marketing platform is running as it should.

Once you have all of that in place, it’s possible to practice A/B testing to measure the campaign’s results. 

Once you have the stats back, take the time to review:

  • Open Rate: Mostly affected by how interesting your subject is, and how much do your subscribers trust you.
  • Click Rate: Checking how many clicked within the opened emails indicates how good and relevant your content is.

  • Delivery Rate: How many emails got into the subscriber’s box.

  • Unsubscribe Rate: Often overlooked. How many list members are unsubscribing?

Are you having an eye over your statistics? They will snitch what you’ve got to do, to serve best your subscriber list, serving best your company’s pipelines. 

Want to Fix Your Email Marketing Problems?

This is not as easy as it sounds. 

But don’t worry. Because you aren’t alone.

As we shared these 9 common email marketing problems with you (and they’re solutions)…

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