Below you can find details about how to create, test, launch and schedule your email campaigns.
For details on how to create the email message itself, see: Email Content.
This guide describes the functionality found in the Email Campaign module of the Emarsys Marketing Cloud. If you are using an email as part of an Automation Center program, please refer to the Automation Center documentation where appropriate.
There are three main types of email campaign, each of which can be triggered in a number of ways, depending on your workflow.
Ad hoc email campaigns
Ad hoc campaigns are batch campaigns, which means that one email campaign is sent to many recipients. This happens at a fixed time and only once. They can be launched immediately or scheduled for a future date.
The content of these campaigns is usually standard for all contacts, but Emarsys offers a number of features to tailor this, including personalization, conditional text and block targeting.
Ad hoc campaigns can be triggered as part of an Automation Center campaign, via the API, or launched directly from the Email Campaigns module.
Recurring email campaigns
Recurring campaigns are also batch campaigns, which are set up to launch at the same time at regular intervals. Content can be added manually or automatically via RSS feeds. A child campaign is generated 30 minutes before launch to let you check the content and make any last-minute alterations.
Note: Recurring campaigns must be set up in cooperation with Emarsys Support. Please contact us for more information.
On-event emails are triggered by recipient action. The following on-event emails can be triggered from the Email Campaigns module:
- On registration – The email is sent after a recipient registered via a form of your choice. Example: an email confirming registration.
- On birthday – The email launch is linked to the “date of birth” field in the contact database. The system looks for available date-of-birth entries and sends “on birthday” emails as appropriate.
On tell-a-friend – The email is sent after a designated email has been forwarded via the Emarsys tell-a-friend page; addressee is the forwarding contact.
Important note: Due to ever more stringent data protection legislation, the use of this feature might be inadmissible and might trigger legal proceedings in some countries. Please obtain legal advice in your country before activating this feature. Emarsys does not take any responsibility for the legality of usage of this feature in your country.
- On change profile – The email launch is linked to a change in a contact profile and sent to the contact after they made the change.
- On contact us – The email launch is linked to a contact-us form and sent to a contact after they have submitted the form.
- On date – The email is sent on a specific date. Once a date field has been created, you can select it from the drop-down box.
- On abandon shopping cart – The email launch is linked to a session in a web shop which has been started via another email. If a customer opens a shopping cart and fails to make a purchase, a reminder email can be sent. You can choose between sessions that have been accessed via a particular email or by any email in a category.
On import – The email is sent after an import has been performed. Example: You want to send a welcome or confirmation email to contacts who registered for your newsletter from outside Emarsys (i.e. an offline campaign, your own database).
Note: To trigger an email you must enter the import identifier from an Auto-Import on the Settings page of the campaign. This identifier will then be available for selection on the Import page and the email will launch as soon as that Auto-import is complete.
- On program event – These emails are part of Automation Center programs and can only be launched by the program.
- On external event – These emails are used by the API as part of an external integration.
All on-event emails can be sent a defined number of days after the event has occurred or, in the case of date-based campaigns, a defined number of days before.
On date (including on-birthday) emails are sent each day at the same time in the account default time zone. This setting is not affected by changes to the time zone in your My Profile page.
All the email campaigns that have been created in your account are listed on the Email Campaigns page (Campaigns menu, Email Campaigns).
Emails are listed with their Email name, Recipient source and Status, as well as the user who created them (Admin), the Template they were based on and the date they were Created and last Changed. The list can be sorted by clicking the respective column title. By default the last 200 emails are shown (and can be searched for). To access older emails you can change this setting in the advanced filters (see below).
In the standard account setup, only the user who created the email campaigns can edit or delete it. If you wish to share editing rights among all account users, please contact Emarsys Support.
To view only a certain type of email, you can filter the list. Initially only the Filter free-text search box and the Email category are visible. Click Show filters to use the advanced filter options.
- Emails – Select All to display all emails in the system; this is the default setting. Select Mine to display only emails which were created by you.
- Status – The status of an email is defined by a) it being active or inactive (i.e. deleted), and b) its current workflow phase. From the first drop-down box, select Current (last 200) or All to display your active emails or Deleted to display all emails which have been deleted. From the second drop-down menu, select a workflow phase.
If your account has a large number of active campaigns, you may want to keep the Current (last 200) option selected to improve the speed with which the page loads.
- Language – Displays only emails which were created with the selected language setting.
- Show child emails – Shows the child campaigns for on-event and recurring emails.
- Save settings – Saves the current settings for later use.
When you delete an email, it is not fully deleted but moved to a different folder internally. If the deleted email has already been launched, very little changes; the images in the email will still be downloaded and the links will still work and be tracked, including the online version and unsubscribe. The email will not be listed on the Email Campaigns or Email Analysis pages but can still be found if you use the advanced filter options and change the status to Deleted.
To create a campaign from a template, go to the Campaigns menu, Email Campaigns and click Create Campaign.
On the Your Templates page you can choose from any of the available templates. Just hover your cursor over the template and click Create Campaign.
If you want to use one of the prebuilt templates, you will first have to make a copy so that it appears in the Templates section and is available for selection.
We recommend all our users to take advantage of our new Visual Content Editor, but we recognize that there are some features that are still only available in the old campaign editor. For a full comparison between the two editors, please check here.
To create an email using the old editor, choose the Template-Based Email option for campaign creation.
This will take you to the old editor where you can create an email using the old structure of sections and groups.
You can refer to the documentation for this editor here:
This editor will not be supported indefinitely. As soon as all our features are available in the new Visual Content Editor, we will switch this editor off. Emarsys Support will then help you convert your old Emarsys templates into the new block-based templates.
To create an email using your own HTML code, choose the Custom HTML Email option for campaign creation.
Many of our customers send to recipients all over the world and in different languages. There are two ways to handle this.
1. Send a separate campaign for each language
The simplest and most flexible solution is to create a master campaign in one language, and then copy it for each additional language, replacing the content as appropriate.
As long as you have no included any content in the Frame, you will be able to use the same template for all languages.
Make sure that the right language is selected in the Email Settings (see below), so that the correct forms and landing pages are displayed, and make sure that you have correctly segmented your launch list according to their preferred language.
This method is quick and easy to do, but it does mean that each campaign will have its own reporting. However, you can view some aggregated reporting and the response metrics side by side in the Trends page,
2. Send one campaign for all languages
It is possible to duplicate all the blocks in your email and create a specific one in each language, and then use block targeting to display each one to a different segment of the same launch list.
This method will ensure that all reporting for this campaign is displayed together, but it will make your campaign extremely large and unwieldy to work with.
The first step of the campaign creation workflow is to define the Email Settings. These are divided into two parts.
Here you define the following settings:
- Email name - The internal name for the email campaign
- Language - Used for automatic texts such as unsubscribe landing pages, as well as the fields used for personalization.
- Email category - Used for behavior segmentation.
- Additional tracking parameters - These will be added to every link in your email, if you are using an external tool such as Google Analytics, for example.
- Send text-only - If you want to send only a text version of this email, activate this checkbox.
Here you define the following settings:
- Recipient source - The type of source defines how launch list is generated - either from a list or segment, a form submission, an API call or via an event.
- Segment - This changes dynamically with the Recipient source; here you select the actual source.
- Exclude - If you have chosen a simple segment or list as source, you can also choose to exclude contacts in a different list or segment from the launch list.
- Do not send to duplicate email addresses - If this is activated, Emarsys will ignore email addresses that occur more than once in the launch list, and send only to the first contact in the list.
- CC - Activate this if you want to send a copy of the mail to another email address, e.g. for archive or reference purposes. Copies can only be sent to contact lists, not segments.
- Frequency - If you have chosen a segment or list as source, you can define if this is a one-off or a recurring campaign.
Recurring campaigns launched via the email campaign editor must be set up by Emarsys Support. It is quicker and easier to create them yourself in the Automation Center using a Recurring filter entry point.
Prior to launching an email campaign, we recommend sending a test email. These test emails are not recorded as part of the launch and no contact responses (opens, clicks etc.) are displayed in the Email Analysis. Scheduling, launch list or A/B version tests are not affected by testmails.
- To send a test mail, open the Content Creation page and click Testmail.
- In the pop-up, set the Subject line and the Recipient source. This can be either a Contact list, a Segment or you can Enter email addresses manually.
- Click Send to launch the testmail.
Please note that you cannot send a test mail to more than 50 recipients at a time.
A/B testing your content is a great way to try out different strategies and continually optimize your marketing efforts. There are different ways to do this, depending on the type of campaign you are sending.
To A/B Test an ad hoc, batch campaign in the email editor, proceed as follows:
1. Create your versions
On the Content Creation page, open the Versions tab. Your email will be shown as Version #a.
Make your changes to the new version and save them. You can change anything you like in the version, but the version name (<i>Version #b</i>) is internal and cannot be changed.
Repeat this for every version you want to create.
You can edit, copy and delete versions on the Versions tab. The original version (Vesion #a) cannot be deleted.
2. Launching the test versions
When you are finished with your versions, open the Scheduling page.
Under Select launch type, add the percentage of contacts who will receive the first version, and give that version a name. This name will be added to the campaign name to differentiate between the versions.
Select the version you want to send for this test.
Check the personalization for the version and set the launch date. You can choose to Launch Now or Launch Later. If you choose to Launch Now, the campaign will be launched when you have activated the Final mailing option.
As you schedule versions for launch, they are listed in the Scheduling page:
There is no limit to the number of versions you can create and test but you cannot send tests to more than 90% of the launch list.
When you have launched all your versions, select the criteria for the Final mailing. You can set the toggle to Manually and decide which version to send yourself, or set it to Automatically and let Emarsys choose the version based on these possible criteria:
If you choose the automated version, Emarsys will send the best-performing version as soon as enough time has passed to collect some sample responses. The default time for this is one hour but it can be specified per account.
For recurring and event-triggered emails, you will need to use the Automation Center A/B splitter node to test your email content.
This node lets you create multiple paths in your program and assign a percentage of incoming contacts to each one.
For more information on how this feature works, see: Testing Programs.
The Deliverability Advisor is a tool that analyzes your email campaigns and provides highly targeted guidance on how to optimize your content to keep great deliverability at the front of your email marketing strategy. It provides all the information you need to feel confident that you are doing everything you can to uphold the high Emarsys standards of permission-based email marketing.
The Deliverability Advisor is the next step in the email creation wizard after Content Creation, and you can also access it from the Deliverability Reporting page.
The most important parts of this feature are Preventive Check, which analyzes the content of your email campaigns, and your Deliverability Engagement Score, which ranks your campaign performance against the Emarsys global averages.
A guide to interpreting this report, and advice on how to correct any issues, can be found here: Fixing Your Deliverability Issues.
Emarsys runs a number of checks on your email campaigns which are designed to highlight how well you are following our Email Best Practices. With the help of these checks, you can avoid sending email campaigns with obvious deliverability issues. This results in higher engagement and fewer negative metrics (i.e. bounces, unsubscribes, spams).
These checks cover both email content and issues related to email authentication. Any errors or anomalies are flagged so you can immediately take action to correct them.
Email Content Checks
These cover all aspects of your email content. Errors or anomalies are flagged with a red triangle suggestions for action are provided.
- Multi-part message - Checks the different parts of your message.
- Mail message size - Checks fort the ideal size of 100KB. The recommended email size range is between 15KB and 110KB.
- Phishing links - Checks whether your email contains unsecure links.
- Image URLs - Checks whether your image URLs are valid.
- Alternative text for images - Checks the alternative texts for your images.
- Responsiveness - Checks mobile responsiveness of your message.
- Phishing images - Checks whether your email contains suspicious image links.
Email Basics Checks
These are email authentication, domain and IP checks. When you want to send an email from a specific domain (e.g. emarsys.com), different checks show whether the email can be authenticated or not. These help to differentiate your emails from spoof emails which pretend to come from legitimate domains.
- Subject line wording - Checks the length and the proper wording of the subject line.
- DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail) - Checks the domain key configuration of your sender domain.
- DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance) - Checks your DMARC record configuration. Emarsys determines the DMARC settings for your complete protection, so you must make sure that you follow these.
- DNS records (Domain Name System) - Checks the DNS record configuration of your sender domain.
- SPF records (Sender Policy Framework) - Checks the authorization of your sender domain.
This tab is a reminder to keep checking your email performance over time to identify trends that can either be corrected or optimized further.
On this tab you can preview your mail in different formats.
You can view your message in Text preview, HTML preview and Mobile preview.
The DES summarizes the engagement levels of your contacts and presents this in a series of metrics, allowing you to check your deliverability based on real facts and not gut feeling. It compares your open, click and unsubscribe rates by domain against what we expect from our other clients, and uses these to award you a numeric score.
For more information on how the DES is calculated, please see: Your Deliverability Engagement Score.
Once you have created your campaign, you can either launch it immediately or schedule it to launch at a specific date and time in the future. The options available depend on the type of email campaign and the recipient source.
- Generated through a multi opt-in form, Generated through an event or Using the API - if you are using these recipient sources, or if you are using A/B Testing, you will automatically see the Advanced Scheduling options.
- Generated through an event / On Program Event - you will not see the Scheduling page at all, since this is managed by the program settings.
- Generated through an event / any other event - you will see the Event scheduling page.
- Frequency / Recurring email - you will see the Recurring schedule page.
For all other campaign types, you will see the Simple Scheduling page, and will have the option to switch to Advanced Scheduling if you so wish.
When you create a simple ad hoc email campaign, you will see the default Scheduling page of the campaign editor.
Your launch list will be generated every time you open this page so you always see an up-to-date summary of your recipients and their opt-in status.
The number of recipients shown here is just an approximation, as some of the checks that are performed at launch, such as email syntax, blacklist and frequency cap control, are not performed at this stage. Also, please bear in mind that these numbers are valid at the time when the page was opened. The number of contacts in the launch list may be different at the time of launch, especially if you schedule the launch for a later date.
If you are sending your campaign to a segment, the Launch Details overview will show the number of contacts the segment contained the last time it was run. If the segment has since been modified, no figures will be displayed. In this case, you can refresh the table manually by clicking the Update button. All segments are refreshed again at the moment of sending the campaign.
You can launch a campaign straight away by clicking Launch Now. You will be asked to confirm your action and then the launch process will begin immediately.
To schedule the launch for a later date, proceed as follows:
- Click the date and time picker at the bottom of the page to select the date and time you want your email to be delivered.
- Select the time zone if necessary.
- Click Launch Later.
- Confirm your action in the pop-up dialog.
If you are using Send Time Optimization (STO), Emarsys needs to analyze the launch list and calculate when to send to each recipient. This can delay the launch by 15-30 minutes in some cases. If you switch to Advanced scheduling, STO will be switched off for that campaign. For more information on STO, click here.
If you want to use the advanced launch options, such as testing different versions of your email on a small percentage of recipients before sending the final mailing, click Advanced Scheduling.
Before you can take advantage of any of the features here, you will have to generate the launch list manually. Once this is displayed in the table, you can proceed with your launch.
Click the Invalid address column to open your Bounce Settings page, and click Estimated recipients to view the launch list
Once you have switched to Advanced Scheduling and performed any actions there (such as generating the launch list), you will not be able to switch back to Simple Scheduling.
Furthermore, if you are using Send Time Optimization this will be deactivated if you switch to Advanced Scheduling.
If your email campaign is set to be triggered by an event, the Scheduling page simply lets you decide whether to send the emails exactly on the event or a certain time before or after.
In this way you can send an email one day before an anniversary event, for example, or a day after a registration.
After you have set the schedule, click Activate to enable the campaign. From this moment it will send an email every time the trigger event occurs.
On-date (including on-birthday) emails are sent each day at the same time in the account default time zone. This setting is not affected by changes to the time zone on the profile page of the logged-in user.
In most cases, recurring campaigns are created using the Automation Center Recurring filter entry node. However, you can set one up in the Email Campaign module, but you must ask Emarsys Support to set the actual launch time.
If you have set up such a recurring campaign, the scheduling page is replaced by controls asking you to define when the child campaign is created and who should receive an alert. This is designed to give you time to check the child campaign and correct any errors in time for the launch.
While your email campaign is being prepared and being sent out to all the recipients, you can still halt the email sending process by clicking Pause. To continue with the launch, click Resume.
If you pause a campaign after some emails have been sent out, these contacts will still be listed in the Analysis pages. Once all the email have been sent, you can no longer stop or recall any of them.
To pause an on-event campaign, open the Scheduling page and click Deactivate at any time.