How to Choose Your Email Marketing Keywords, Best Practices, & Challenges

With over 4 billion daily email users worldwide, it’s easy to say email is a great channel to add to your marketing strategy. Knowing how to choose your email marketing keywords, best practices, and spearheading the challenges that come with it can be, well, challenging. Lucky for you, you’ve found this blog! Below, we’ve laid out everything you need to know about email marketing.

Importance of Email Marketing Keywords

Email marketing offers a stellar return on investment (ROI). According to Hubspot, businesses see an average return of $36 for every $1 spent on email marketing. Knowing this intel, you should want to get a piece of this action. To boost your chances of achieving the maximum benefits of email marketing, keywords will play a huge role.

The importance of email marketing keywords boils down to two key benefits: increased visibility and relevance. You’ll want to choose keywords for your email marketing efforts that will play into these two benefits.

How to Choose Your Email Marketing Keywords

So, now for the fun part: choosing your email marketing keywords! You can use keywords in subject lines or in the content itself and we have several tips on how to actually choose your keywords.

1.      Understand Your Audience

A great way to truly understand your audience is to develop buyer personas. By “becoming” these potential customers, you can further understand their needs, interests, and pain points. Choosing keywords that they are more likely to search is important to keep in mind. 

2.    Align Keywords to Email Marketing Objectives

Are you aiming for brand awareness, lead generation, or driving sales? Or just simply nurturing existing customers? It’s essential to align your keywords with these objectives. Ensuring that your emails, keywords, and goals are in sync maximizes the effectiveness of your marketing efforts and enhances overall campaign performance.

3.    Competitor Analysis

We know, you’ve heard this time and time again. But seriously, keep your enemies (or competition) close! Check out the types of email subject lines they’re using. You can also use tools to see what keywords their website is ranking for which might give more insight on what tactics they’re using in their email marketing.

4.   Keyword Research Tools

There are loads of different tools you can use for your email marketing keywords.

Here are 4 we use and suggest you try out, too:

Free Tools:

Paid Tools:

Prioritize long-tail keywords rather than one-word keywords. Long-tail keywords are typically less competitive and have higher conversion rates as they target users with a clearer purchase intent.

5.   Keyword Research Best Practices

  • Search Intent: Intent, intent, intent! Are users looking for information, researching products, or ready to buy? Choosing keywords that align with the stage of your audience’s buyer journey is crucial.
  • Negative Keywords: Utilize negative keywords to exclude irrelevant searches. For example, if you sell high-end shoes, you might add “cheap” or “discount” as negative keywords to avoid reaching users looking for budget options.
  • Incorporate Synonyms: Don’t just stuff your emails with the same exact keywords over and over. Use synonyms and related terms to add natural language variety and improve readability.

Overall Email Marketing Best Practices


Acquiring an audience is the most valuable asset you can have in any email marketing company. You want to build a clean list by getting proper permission and staying away from third-party lists. It can be harmful and detrimental to your brand if you source your email address list from third-party data providers. Choosing quality over quantity when it comes to subscribers is important.

If you’ve been collecting emails for a while and haven’t sent an email to your subscribers yet, it’s best to send a quick reminder campaign to make sure they still want to receive emails from you. You can also grow your email list by running social media campaigns to reach potential clients by providing an option to sign up for your newsletter.


Frequency and timing are the keys to success or failure of your email marketing campaign. Sending too many emails will have you flagged as spam and make your audience opt out of receiving emails. But, on the other end, sending too few emails will result in a low open rate and fewer conversions.

Similar to effective content marketing, be sure to keep your email content relevant and consistent with your brand and optimize your subject lines to tell your subscribers exactly what is in your email. Spam filters look for certain types of content, like too many exclamation points, capital letters, and gimmicky words or phrases.

Mobile Friendly

Email design should be versatile. With the rise of smartphones, more people are checking emails on their mobile devices. It is important to make sure your email can be properly read across all platforms including desktops, mobile and tablets. Ensure the sender’s name and subject line are relevant and easily distinguishable, so all your recipients need to do is click and read the email.

It’s not enough to have a great email design, you also need it to be user-friendly. Don’t forget the different email platforms! Gmail renders HTML emails differently from Outlook and Apple and Android email platforms operate a bit differently as well. Your emails should be easy to read and mobile-friendly.

Email Marketing Challenges and Solutions

Even the most strategic email marketing keyword choices can’t overcome common email marketing challenges. Here’s a battle plan to tackle some of the biggest obstacles:

Deliverability:  Landing in spam folders is a disaster.

Solution: Maintain good email hygiene (remove inactive subscribers), avoid spammy language, and use a reputable email service provider (ESP) to boost your sender reputation.

Open Rate: Subject lines are your first impression.

Solution: Craft compelling subject lines that pique curiosity, personalize greetings, and A/B test different options to see what resonates with your audience.

Click-Through: So they opened your email–now what? 

Solution: Tailor your email content to the chosen keywords, use strong calls to action (CTAs), and segment your audience to ensure emails are relevant to their needs.

Engagement: Keeping subscribers engaged takes effort.

Solution:  Offer valuable content, personalize your emails, and maintain a consistent sending schedule to stay top-of-mind.

ROI: Measuring the return on investment (ROI) of your email marketing efforts is crucial.

Solution:  Track key metrics like open rates, click-through rates, and conversions, and use those insights to refine your strategy and maximize your ROI.

Make Email Marketing Keywords Easy with Red Egg

Okay, we know this was a lot of information. Who knew so much went into email marketing, right?! So, if this helped answer your questions, you’re welcome. If you’re still not sure you want to do this alone, good news! Just reach out to us. We love anything marketing and would love to hear from you.