Specialising in a specific digital marketing channel has its’ advantages, you can become the go-to person for that channel and with that comes the rewards of higher pay! Although email maybe a crowded channel Email Marketing Specialists are highly sought after. We have put together a guide on what skills will help you land one of these lucrative email marketing jobs.

So what skills do you need to get ahead and specialise in email marketing?

Email Marketing Jobs: The Skills Needed.

The skills needed by email marketers are diverse and far-reaching. Successful email marketers need to be able to juggle many balls at once while wearing many different hats.  

To say that email marketing requires a talented and multi-faceted professional is an understatement, to say the least!

The Skills That We Will Cover:

Email Service Provider (ESP) Experience
Email Design
Data & Analytics
The Technical Side of Email Marketing
GDPR Compliance

Email Service Provider (ESP) Experience

Previous experience with the tools of the email marketing trade will help greatly in your goal of email marketing specialisation. Our clients quite often like to recruit email marketers who have had hands-on experience with the ESPs that they themselves use.

The most popular ESPs include Mail Chimp, Constant Contact, A Weber so it would be a good idea to atleast get familiar with some of these platforms if you are going to succesfully land that email marketing job.


Skilful email marketers will know never to underestimate the importance of copy and content.  There are key copywriting concepts that you will need to really master if you are going to specialise in email marketing.

Persuasive Copy and the Call To Action (CTA)

Every email that is sent should have a purpose, an action for the prospect or customer to take — CTA’s persuade them to take that action and thus achieve the objective of the email.

A successful CTA is best described as an instruction to your audience. One that is designed to elicit an immediate response. 

Best practice suggests that you should only use one CTA per email.  Too much choice will lead to confusion and may mean that your reader won’t react to any.  You should also use a CTA which provokes a reaction in your customer. The 4 pillars of persuasion are scarcity, curiosity, social proof and authority. 

For more guidance on these principles, curious marketers should head to Cialdini’s book, “Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion”. What he doesn’t know about what compels people to say “yes” isn’t worth knowing! Use any one of these tactics and watch your click-through rates grow!


Email Design

Knowledge of design principles as well as the ability to create engaging email template designs using HTML and CSS.

Mobile First Email Design

Look around you right now. It’s more than likely you’re able to see at least one person scrolling on their smartphone.  With so much content consumed on the small screen, successful email marketers know how to tailor their content for both desktop and mobile devices.  

For example, is your page scroll friendly, are your text blocks too chunky and unappealing and are your CTA buttons big enough to be hit with a thumb?  This may be the difference between a click through and a missed opportunity.

Basic Graphic Design Skills  

You don’t have to be a graphic designer to be an email marketer but an understanding of the principles and how to use tools like Photoshop and/or GIMP will help.

Some of the most successful email campaigns rely on short, punchy copy married with simple and colourful imagery.

The larger the marketing the less necessary it will be for you to have email design skills.

Larger marketing teams have dedicated designers, despite this, it is always good to understand the principles involved in design. By knowing what will look good and what can or cannot be done your cross-discipline team will be stronger. 

Data & Analytics

In the modern digital landscape, data is king.  Great email marketers need to be able to use their data to maximise every opportunity.  

One of the key contributors to the high success rate of email marketing is the fact it is so highly trackable.

As such, analytics is quite possibly the Sombrero of email marketing hats! Without being able to test, interpret and understand all your vital stats, how can you know where or how to direct your campaign?  Knowledge is power after all!

Skilled email marketers will know how to use their data to focus on the following:

List Segmentation

Shrewd list segmentation skills and an understanding of how this will improve the performance of your campaigns is a vital skill for an email marketing specialist.

Attribution Models

The customer journey has developed over recent years, and the buying journey is much less linear.  These days, purchases are made after jumping through lots of different hoops. For example, you have no way of knowing if it was your subscriber who made a purchase on the high street after receiving one of your emails.

Attribution modelling has evolved to solve this problem. Having an understanding of attribution modelling and how it applies to the customer journey is an essential skill when seeking an email marketing job.


A/B testing, MVT, and experimentation allow email marketers to formulate and plan a successful email campaign.  By looking at the numbers and analysing the resulting trends, you can begin to understand what is (or isn’t) working for you.

With an understanding of data, analytics and stats email marketers are able to successfully test and optimise different variables within their broadcasts.

If you are serious about becoming an email marketing specialist then improving your understanding of data will be a critical skill for you.

The Technical Side of an Email Marketing Job

Email marketers rely upon the smooth runnings of technology.  Software and hardware are integral to every single campaign, and therefore have to be both reliable and efficient.

It would be advantageous for email marketers to be able to effectively manage many back-end tasks, such as:

  • The Admin Functions of their ESP
  • The connection parameters of their database
  • The configuration of mail servers.
  • The configuration of domain name systems to ensure uninterrupted mail delivery
  • Sensitive customer data needs to protected through the use of network security software.

GDPR Compliance

With the new data protection law coming into play 25th May 2018 any knowledge you have of GDPR compliance will help you get an email marketing job.

Make sure that if you are putting yourself forward for any kind of email marketing role you do have an understanding of the new regulation — your email marketing job prospects depend upon it.

The ICO currently provide a great deal of information about GDPR.

Just One More Thing…

If you are looking for new opportunities within email marketing then keep an eye on our job portal. We often have quite a few exciting opportunities we would love to discuss with you.  



About the author: I ensure that everyone at Ignite Digital Talent brings our brand values to life. I focus on building great relationships with both clients and candidates whilst also unearthing the best digital marketing professionals and opportunities on the market.

Leave a Reply

Notify of

Related Articles

Scroll To Top