What Is an Email Marketing Manager & What Do They Do

ByNitesh Chand


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Email continues to dominate the digital marketing world as a communication powerhouse, with billions of emails exchanged daily. This also showcases the effectiveness of email marketing as a strategic tool for brand growth and customer engagement. The field has specialized roles, from designers who craft visually appealing emails to technicians who optimize deliverability.

The email marketing manager manages these diverse functions and is an important figure who integrates them into meaningful and impactful campaigns. This guide explores the role of an email marketing manager, their responsibilities, and the skills required to manage comprehensive email marketing initiatives.

Table of contents

What is an email marketing manager?

An email marketing manager oversees a company’s email marketing efforts. They plan and execute email campaigns, manage subscriber lists, create engaging newsletters, and analyze the success of those campaigns.

Their main goals are to connect with the right audience, promote the brand, and drive customer engagement and sales through email.

What does an email marketing manager do?

An email marketing manager looks after various aspects of an email marketing campaign. We’ve discussed the specific responsibilities under three groups.

Strategic responsibilities

Strategic responsibilities refer to the responsibilities related to the strategic planning of email campaigns that align with the overall business goal. Some responsibilities that come under this are:

  • Define the overall email marketing strategy in alignment with the organization’s long-term business objectives.
  • Develop strategies for segmenting the audience to deliver more personalized and effective messaging.
  • To ensure a consistent and unified customer journey, plan to integrate email marketing with other channels.
  • Integrate new email marketing technologies and methodologies to stay ahead of market trends and competitors.
  • Create strategies to maximize the return on investment from email campaigns through continuous testing and refinement.
  • Develop strategies to mitigate risks associated with email marketing, such as reputation damage from spam complaints and ensuring compliance with data protection laws.

Learn how to create an effective event email marketing strategy here:

Operational responsibilities

Operational responsibilities in email marketing involve executing daily tasks such as designing and sending email campaigns. Some specific responsibilities under this are:

  • Ensure all email campaigns are executed on schedule and according to plan.
  • Oversee the quality of all daily outbound emails and ensure they meet brand standards and compliance requirements.
  • Allocate resources effectively to meet campaign needs and optimize output.
  • Oversee email marketing tools and software integration and functionality to support campaign execution.

Analytical responsibilities

Analytical responsibilities in email marketing include analyzing collected data and extracting meaningful insights to help plan better. Some responsibilities included in this are:

  • Ensure accurate analysis of campaign metrics to evaluate performance and identify areas for improvement.
  • Manage the design and implementation of A/B tests to optimize campaign elements based on data-driven insights.
  • Direct the compilation and analysis of performance reports, ensuring key insights are communicated effectively to stakeholders.
  • Convert collected data into actionable insights, informing strategic decisions and campaign adjustments.
  • Oversee the selection and utilization of analytics tools and software to improve data collection and interpretation capabilities.
  • Supervise the tracking and analysis of campaign metrics to ensure everyday targets are met.

Prerequisites of being an email marketing manager

To become an email marketing manager, candidates generally benefit from having the following qualifications, though there are multiple pathways to the role:


A bachelor's degree in marketing, communications, or a related field is common, but many successful managers come from alternative education routes, such as online courses, certifications, or boot camps.


A hands-on candidate's experience in email or digital marketing is crucial for landing an email marketing manager role. The required experience varies by company—some might look for a few years of experience, while others might be open to applicants with extensive backgrounds. This experience could come from internships, freelance gigs, content marketing, or any similar role you've worked closely with in digital communications. These roles help build the skill set to oversee and execute successful email marketing campaigns.

Hard skills

  • Technical skills: An email marketing manager should be proficient with email marketing automation tools, list management tools, HTML, CSS, and content management systems. Familiarity with web and user analytics tools is also important.
  • Copywriting: The manager should excel at writing engaging digital content and focus on crafting attractive subject lines, previews, and email bodies.

Soft skills

  • Leadership: The manager must be able to lead and coordinate teams effectively, ensuring smooth collaboration and goal alignment.
  • Problem-solving: Strong analytical and problem-solving skills are important for troubleshooting and optimizing campaigns.
  • Project management: Managing multiple projects simultaneously is a key skill for effective organization and prioritization.
  • Communication: Strong verbal and written communication skills are essential for clear instructions, feedback, and stakeholder engagement.

Interview questions to prepare for your email marketing manager role

We’ve curated a list of questions you may come across in the job description if you’re going for an interview for the role of email marketing manager. You can take inspiration from the answers and create your answers.

  1. How would you handle unsuccessful email campaigns?

I would conduct a thorough analysis to pinpoint the elements that didn't perform as expected or the reason for the failure. For instance, if a campaign received low engagement and I suspect the subject line was misleading, I would look into our subject line testing procedures to identify any shortcomings.

From there, I'd make targeted adjustments to ensure our subject lines are clear and compelling. I’ll also share the learnings with the rest of the team to reduce future failures.

  1. What metrics would you use to evaluate the effectiveness of your email campaigns?

In addition to open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates, I would incorporate several other key metrics to fully assess our email campaign’s effectiveness. These would include unsubscribe rates to understand if our content aligns with audience expectations, bounce rates to help identify issues with our email list quality or deliverability problems, and growth rate of our email list to measure the effectiveness of our lead-capture efforts.

By analyzing this comprehensive set of metrics, I can obtain a holistic view of our campaign performance and make informed decisions to optimize our email marketing strategy.

  1. How do you determine the appropriate tone and style for your email campaigns?

When setting the tone and style for our email campaigns, my first step is understanding our target audience's preferences and expectations. This involves analyzing customer demographics, previous interactions, and engagement data.

For example, I'd choose a casual yet innovative tone for a tech startup to target early adopters and resonate with their enthusiasm for new technologies. Conversely, a more formal tone would be appropriate for a financial institution where trust and reliability are paramount.

  1. Which companies do you believe have standout email marketing strategies, and why?

I believe Airbnb and Spotify are companies with exceptional email marketing strategies. Airbnb excels by sending highly personalized email content reflecting users' past behaviors and preferences, significantly improving the user experience. Their emails feel tailored and relevant, encouraging further engagement with their platform.

On the other hand, Spotify’s year-end ‘Wrapped’ campaign is a brilliant example of data-driven personalization. It provides users with unique insights into their listening habits and cleverly encourages sharing on social media, thus amplifying user engagement and boosting brand loyalty. Both companies show how well-executed personalization can elevate a brand’s connection with its audience.

  1. How would you approach different types of emails within a customer journey?

When crafting emails for different customer journey stages, I would tailor each message to meet that stage's specific needs and context. For instance, with welcome emails, I would focus on making a great first impression that solidifies the brand’s value proposition. I might include a special offer to encourage new subscribers to make their first purchase.

My priorities for transactional emails, such as order confirmations or shipping updates, would be clarity and timeliness, ensuring customers feel informed and secure about their transactions. Additionally, for re-engagement emails targeting inactive customers, I would highlight recent changes or introduce new products that might pique their interest. Each type of email is a strategic tool to strengthen the customer relationship at that particular point in their journey with us.

  1. What steps do you take to address email deliverability issues?

Addressing email deliverability issues is important for ensuring our messages reach our audience effectively. Firstly, I regularly monitor our sender's reputation score to detect potential red flags affecting deliverability. If I notice an increase in emails landing in spam folders, my immediate step is to verify our use of authentication protocols, like SPF and DKIM, to ensure they're properly configured.

Optimizing email content is also important; this includes avoiding trigger words that might flag spam filters and ensuring our emails are engaging and relevant to our subscribers. Regularly reviewing these elements helps maintain high deliverability rates and ensures our communication effectively reaches our intended recipients.

  1. How would you organize and prioritize your daily tasks as an email marketing manager?

As an email marketing manager, I would start my day by reviewing the key performance indicators from our active campaigns. This initial step would help me identify priorities and adjust my daily plan accordingly. I would also rely on project management tools extensively to organize tasks and deadlines, essential for effective delegation and ensuring comprehensive coverage of all necessary actions.

Regular coordination with cross-functional teams is also crucial; it ensures that our efforts are synchronized and focused on high-impact activities. Whether it is refining campaign strategies based on fresh insights, planning content for upcoming initiatives, or resolving urgent issues, I always prioritize tasks that will maximize our impact on the company's marketing goals.

Here are a few questions recommended by the email marketing manager at Mailmodo for a better understanding.

  1. How would you determine if your emails are being directed to spam folders?

To determine if emails are ending up in spam folders, one of the most indicative metrics is the open rate. A significantly low open rate, such as less than 2%, can signal that emails are being marked as spam. The average open rate for email marketing varies depending on the industry but is generally expected to be much higher than 2%, often ranging from 15% to 25%.

  1. Can you determine the exact deliverability rate of emails?

You can approximate the deliverability rate of emails using several tools and metrics, such as delivery rates, bounce rates, and engagement statistics. However, obtaining an exact deliverability rate is challenging because the clients and ISPs usually hold the critical data required to calculate this metric and generally do not share it. Thus, while we can estimate deliverability to a certain degree, achieving a precise measurement is not feasible.

  1. What are some actionable steps you would take in response to the latest sender guidelines from Yahoo and Google?

To comply with the latest guidelines from Yahoo and Google, I'd focus on a few key areas. First, I’d ensure our emails consistently engage our audience to improve our sender reputation—this helps prevent our emails from being flagged as spam. Second, I’d ensure all our emails are properly authenticated with SPF, DKIM, and DMARC. This boosts our credibility with ISPs and helps prevent email spoofing. Lastly, I’d keep our mailing list clean by regularly removing inactive subscribers, which helps improve our overall deliverability rates. These steps are crucial for staying on top of the changes and maintaining good standing with major email providers like Yahoo and Google.


So, being an email marketing manager might seem challenging at first, but if you know the responsibilities and tasks you’ll need to take up as one, you can prepare yourself for them beforehand. You can also develop the skills discussed in this guide to ensure you’re better suited for this role. Consider gaining more hands-on experience or exploring advanced training to enhance your email marketing skills further. If it sounds like you’re the right fit for this role, start prepping yourself and achieve the success and glory that come with being an email marketing manager.


Important skills for an email marketing manager include technical proficiency with email marketing tools, strong copywriting abilities, leadership, problem-solving, project management, and communication.

Yes, many email marketing managers begin their careers in broader digital marketing roles, as content creation, data analytics, and customer engagement skills are highly transferable.

An email marketing manager's daily challenges include staying ahead of changing technology, ensuring emails comply with legal standards, and effectively and continuously engaging a diverse audience.

Staying current involves regular training, attending industry conferences, participating in relevant webinars, and keeping up with digital marketing publications and trends.

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