How to Choose and Hire an Email Marketing Agency

How to Choose and Hire an Email Marketing Agency

Email Marketing Living Online

  • Email marketing is a saviour when it's done right. It can help you skyrocket sales and boost engagement from customers who initially said 'no'.
  • As an entrepreneur, you might not have time to focus on creating robust campaigns that will get you the results you want. That's where an email marketing agency comes in.
  • But how do you find the right email marketing agency that aligns with your business and goals? Keep reading to get top tips and what to look out for.

Do you need to hire an email marketer? How do you choose an email specialist that’s going to drive results for your business?

If you’ve created a successful business or you’re a budding entrepreneur, you know that your sole focus is on creating sales opportunities that create profit for your business – be it from product sales, services or an experience. Your goal is to turn prospects into paying customers that say yes to what you have to offer.

But one question that almost always gets left on the table is ‘How do I make sales from people who say no to me?’ That is, people that have made an enquiry, they’re sitting on my database but they haven’t become a sale yet.

There aren’t too many businesses that truly know how to extract the sales from their database because we spend so much of our attention on generating brand new cold leads from traffic sources like Google and Social Media. Whilst advertising is crucial to any business, the problem is that most businesses solely focus on this.

It’s a problem because the vast majority of people aren’t going to buy from us at first sight but we’re so focused on the small percentage of people who want to buy today…not tomorrow.

If you’ve got prospects checking out your website, seeing your offers and enquiring but they still say ‘no’ when you contact them. Well, it’s almost always for one of these reasons:

  1. Lack of interest: Sometimes people aren't interested or don’t have the urgency to buy right now.
  2. Pocrastination: They’re interested and want the outcome, but they’re distracted by something telling them to go and do it later (have you experienced this?).
  3. More information needed: They’re almost ready to buy but they have questioned un-answered or a concern, or maybe they’re just researching and just need more time to make the decision.

The above reasons are why I want to highlight the importance of follow up through customer-centric email marketing by deep diving into. One of the best ways to do this is by hiring an email marketing expert or agency that can help you turn those “no’s” into sales opportunities.. 

But how do you choose and hire an email marketer?

I have had the privilege of working with some fantastic email marketers that have delivered incredible value for our brands and drove highly effective email strategies designed to provide value and increase sales conversions.

In addition to working with some great individuals, I’ve also learnt how to qualify a great email marketing specialist and I want to share those tips with you so that you know what to look for when you hire your next email marketing superstar!

How to Hire an Email Marketing Agency 

There are six things to consider to help you find the best email marketing agency:

  1. They know how to measure success
  2. They’re open to being wrong
  3. They love data
  4. They’re ‘on the go’ thinkers
  5. Paying attention to the details
  6. They know how to write good copy

1. They know how to measure success

One of several key factors in e-mail marketing success is knowing what success looks like. That may seem obvious but you’d be surprised how many people don’t know what to analyse, therefore, they don’t know what worked and what didn’t.

Whether it’s button placement, call to actions or content, there are small details often overlooked that can derail a campaign. Additionally, remember that what worked before will not necessarily work now.

An email marketing specialist will grind until they know that all their tracking is perfect. That’s why in an interview, considering asking about situations where they’ve had to report back on their success. If their response doesn’t directly include or allude to “how they measured their campaigns,” they may have difficulty driving meaningful results for your business.

2. They’re open to being wrong

Another key to email success is continually testing. If you’re not then perhaps you’re afraid to push the boundaries and in many cases, this is driven by a fear of being wrong. Whilst we’re taught that being wrong is something to avoid, the essence of email marketing is always challenging the status quo and learning from everything you’re testing, even if it didn’t work.

Hiring people who love to push the boundaries and finding new ways of doing things – and aren’t afraid of being wrong – is critical for success. Consider asking about situations where they’ve been wrong – what they did, what they learnt and what they implemented from the learning. If they can’t communicate any learnings, it may be a sign that they wear ‘wrong’ too heavily and may be unable to deep dive into ‘why it went wrong’

3. They love data

Great email marketing comes down to two factors – understanding the consumer by analysing meaningful data. Being able to draw insights from data can allow you to really understand what’s going to resonate with your prospects and what will drive them to convert.

This is an easy question in the interview, simply show them the analytics of an email campaign and ask them to identify a meaningful trend. If they break out in the sweats …then perhaps they’re not your candidate.

4. They’re ‘on the go’ thinkers

Email marketers work on tight deadlines so they must be able to unleash their creative thinking even under timely pressures. Without this experience and skill set – the person may struggle and can cause more management headaches for you.

It could be worthwhile sending them an assignment prior to the interview where they are tasked to draft a single email designed to get people to engage with ‘boring industry’. This allows you test the level of creativity whilst under an element of time pressure. If your candidate struggles to meet the deadline or more importantly doesn’t bring any outside of the box thinking, then perhaps you might pass on the interview.  

5. Paying attention to the details

The worst thing would be if you send an e-mail with a typo in the subject line or if your sent link would not work. Just make sure they know how to prove their content before they hit send!

A great tactic for identifying their attention to detail is by showing them a live example of an email that has two to three errors. Ask them to check it over. If they don’t spot the errors, then maybe you don’t want them in charge of hitting send on your email campaigns.

6. They know how to write good copy

The real game changer is knowing how to write words that sell (and sound like you). No one likes being sold to, so writing copy that’s persuasive and connects with your prospects without being pushy is a skillset that only comes with practice and experience.

Email copy that positions your product as the perfect solution to their problems can only be achieved if your potential customers can relate to what you’re telling them.

Whilst in an interview you can’t expect to have a candidate know every little facet of your business and voice, you can put their copywriting to the test by asking them to draft an email prior to the interview about a Niche of your choosing and evaluate whether they take on a voice that’s trying to appease everyone or whether they’re trying to create a personal experience for the user. It may help to pick a Niche that you yourself sit within personally, and see if it moves you to take action and engage.

You want to find people with most of these qualities and equally, understands why these qualities are valuable. If you find someone who hits on all six, hire them – they’ll be an invaluable revenue driver for your business.

Hayley Patrick

Digital Marketing Manager at

Hayley is a highly experienced digital marketer and has spent the last 6 years refining her skills in social media, direct response email marketing, digital, and traditional marketing. Hayley is passionate about marketing and aligns her strategic and technical knowledge to create marketing campaigns that dynamically speak to your customer, are measurable, and that deliver predictable results for your business.