Article first published December 2017, updated June 2019
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of
email personalization? Although the first thing that comes to
mind is likely inserting a subscriber’s first name into the
subject line, there’s much more you can do with
Personalization includes an array of awesome, data-driven
techniques that bring in substantial ROI. These techniques include
making recommendations based on past purchases, using dynamic
content to fit consumer preferences, showing an understanding of
purchasing history, and taking advantage of data to promote
Brands are using creative and diversified email personalization
methods to increase brand engagement, foster customer loyalty, and,
ultimately, work to please those
75% of consumers that are more likely to buy from a brand that
Today, we’re sharing inspiring email personalization examples
from 11 brands using email personalization like pros.
How do you personalize email marketing?
If you aren’t sure how to personalize your emails, check out
these personalized email examples by brands that absolutely nail
1. Sephora leverages VIP status.
Sephora is killing it when it comes to drafting a personalized
email. Of course, they use personalization in the subject line, but
they take it one step further by including personalization in the
content of the email. It’s just one extra way to say, “Hey
Allie, we care about you and your makeup preferences.”
Personalizing email copy isn’t the only thing Sephora does
well. They also set
up rules and triggers to send personalized offers to reward
members of their loyalty program.
For example, they use a VIP status as a trigger to send out more
targeted offers to customers that historically purchase more
If the customer isn’t part of the loyalty program, or spends
less than $200, then Sephora will send an email inviting them to
see new skincare products.
2. Adidas segments their list based on gender.
Adidas is another brand that knows how to cater to their
customers. Adidas has two primary markets that differ in the types
of shoes they purchase. Those primary markets? Men and women.
Rather than sending a generic email to all customers with all
their shoes, Adidas segments their lists based on gender. Then they
can send an email highlighting hip, new men’s shoes to their male
customers, and cute women’s shoes to their female customers.
As a consumer, it’s neat to know your favorite shoe brand
won’t bug you with promotions that don’t interest you.
3. easyJet tells a personalized story.
The easyJet 20th-year birthday celebration campaign has to be
one of the most
innovative and creative campaigns using personalization to
For this campaign, easyJet used dynamic content, links, and
images to tell a personal story for each easyJet customer. Each
customer received a unique email with personalized content that
highlighted everywhere they’d travelled with easyJet in the past
Take a look at the email Alex received.
Alex got a quick reminder of all 12 different adventures in
eight different countries he experienced with easyJet.
Not to mention, easyJet offered him an awesome recommendation,
Malaga, based on his past preferences. They topped it off with a
call to action that works.
EasyJet also reported that their
open rates from this campaign were 100% more than that of their
4. Asics sends personalized follow-ups.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could act as a personal shopper
and salesperson for each of your online customers?
You basically can, and Asics can show you how. Asics doesn’t
keeps track of track their customers’ purchasing activity and
then they leverage real-time marketing automation information to
send personalized email follow-ups.
For example, if a customer puts something in their cart and then
abandons the cart, for whatever reason, Asics will send a
high-quality reminder email urging the customer to return and
complete the purchase.
This type of
personalization is what consumers want, and, with cart
abandonment rates at an all-time high, adding this to your
marketing strategy will save your business a lot of money in lost
5. Flight Centre segments based on customer data.
As you can imagine, a travel company like Flight
Centre has a diversified target audience, and sending out a
generic email with all their flights and deals just wouldn’t be
So what do they do to combat this problem? They compile customer
data from email, back-end systems, and social properties to create
highly targeted segments. These segments are based on past
purchases, customer preferences, interests, location, and
Flight Centre segments their lists and uses dynamic content so
customers that are interested in traveling to the Caribbean get
emails about the Caribbean, and customers interested in travel to
Northern Europe get info about flights to Northern Europe.
It may seem like magic, but it’s not. It’s just smart use of
behavioral data collection and dynamic content with a splash of
creative copywriting and nice design.
6. Mack Weldon makes cart-based recommendations.
Personalization can be as simple as highlighting products you
know your customers were previously viewing or making
recommendations based on other purchases your customers have
Mack Weldon uses this technique in their email marketing
strategy and it works wonders. They collect data on customers’
carts, and then send emails with recommendations based on what the
customer already has in their cart.
This technique helps remind customers to finish their purchase
and encourages them to try more products they’re bound to
7. Nissan sends out custom maintenance milestones.
If you sell a product or service that comes with customer
maintenance milestones, then personalize like Nissan.
Nissan keeps track of every customer purchase and then sets up
different maintenance milestones. Once it’s time for a customer
to bring their car in for maintenance, Nissan will send out an
automatic reminder urging the customer to take care of their
It’s difficult to remember to do things like get the oil
changed, schedule your 60,000-mile maintenance, change your air
filters, etc. How great is it that Nissan takes the time to remind
customers, so they don’t have to remember? Plus, it increases the
likelihood customers will take their car to the dealership for
service, resulting in a boost for business.
For service-related industries, consider personalizing your
reminders just like Nissan.
8. Monica Vinader personalizes images for maximum relevance.
Monica Vinader kicked up their personalization game with a
subject line that read, “This season it’s personal” and goes
for maximum relevance by not only including the subscriber’s name
in the body copy of the email, but personalizing both images in the
email with the subscriber’s initial. They can do this using
content leveraging the first name data they have about their
9. OpenTable encourages customer engagement with review buttons.
You probably already know that a call to action (CTA) is a vital
component of your marketing strategy, but do you know how to add it
to your content?
Adding a clear, actionable CTA button to your email will
definitely improve your click-through rate. More importantly,
it’s an opportunity for customer engagement, which benefits you
in two ways.
First, when customers are engaged with your brand, they’re
more likely to develop a sense of loyalty. That, in turn, can lead
them to stick with your brand when making purchases and cause them
to spread the word about your products or services.
Second, customer engagement often gives you a chance to gather
more data about your customers. The more information you obtain,
the more personalized content you can create.
OpenTable does a great job of this. Their CTA encourages app
users to leave a review of the restaurant they just visited. This
information will not only help other consumers know whether a
restaurant is good or not, but it also provides OpenTable the
information they need to make personalized recommendations based on
each customer’s review history.
Really Good Emails
10. Spotify appeals to their customer’s sense of nostalgia.
When it comes to creating a personalized email, Spotify has it
Spotify provides a customized listening experience based on the
musical preferences of their subscribers. However, they also create
a time capsule music collection for their listeners. Typically,
this is music from the person’s teen years, when music tends to
have a major impact on a person’s life.
Really Good Emails
By creating these time capsules, Spotify is appealing to their
subscribers’ sense of nostalgia. Why is this important? You
don’t just want to attract the attention of your subscribers; you
want to touch their heart.
Creating content that touches a person emotionally—as is
the case with nostalgic content—will make them pay attention
to what you have to say. When a person is more open to your
content, you have a better chance of getting them interested in
Plus, the warm, fuzzy feelings nostalgia produces will now be
linked to your brand, which means your subscribers are more likely
to open future emails and engage with your content.
11. Todoist looks at the big picture when creating personalized
One of the great email personalization examples is this one from
Really Good Emails
The reason this is such a good example of personalized email is
that it reminds us not to forget the big picture. It can be easy to
miss the forest when focusing on email segmentation and performing
A/B tests. You have to remember, though, that there’s a very good
reason why your audience was attracted to you in the first
In the case of Todoist, it’s because their audience wants to
know how to improve their productivity. The task management company
knows that people who use their app want to know if they’re
making progress, which is why they send an annual productivity
This proves that understanding why people have subscribed to
your email list can provide valuable information pertaining to your
These 8 brands aren’t afraid to go big when it comes to email
personalization. By using customer names, utilizing dynamic content
and images, tracking customer data, using rules and triggers, and
segmenting lists, they’re able to provide customers with access
to the exact information they want.
By following these email personalization examples, you can
provide your subscribers with the relevant content they crave. In
doing so, you’ll be able to improve your open rates and,
ultimately, your conversion rates.
Source: FS – Email Marketing Blogs!
11 Brands Using Email Personalization Like Pros