Top Email Marketing Strategies for College Students
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 10 min read


  1. How to build an email list
  2. Why segmentation matters in email marketing
  3. Tips for creating engaging content
  4. How to use automation in email marketing
  5. Importance of a mobile-friendly email design
  6. How to personalize your email campaigns
  7. How to track and analyze your campaigns
  8. How to improve email deliverability rates
  9. Why testing email campaigns is important
  10. How to create an effective email marketing strategy

Are you wondering which email marketing is best for college students? You're not alone. Many are curious about the same thing. Let's dive straight into the world of email marketing, designed for college students like you. We will discuss everything from building an email list, creating engaging content, to tracking your campaigns. With this guide, you'll be well on your way to mastering email marketing, getting your message across, and connecting with your peers.

How to Build an Email List

We can't talk about email marketing without touching on the first step — building an email list. But how does one go about this? Here are some simple ways:

  • Start with friends and peers: You're in college, surrounded by potential contacts. Start by asking friends and classmates if they're interested in receiving emails about your project, organization, or event.
  • Use social media: If you're active on social media — be it Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram — use it to your advantage. Post about your email list and encourage followers to sign up.
  • Offer value: Why should someone give you their email address? Think about what you can offer in return. Maybe it's exclusive content, early bird access, or a weekly roundup of interesting articles. Make sure it's something that appeals to your audience.
  • Organize events: Hosting an event is a great way to gather email addresses. It could be a study group, a guest speaker, or a club meeting. Request attendees to sign-up for future updates.

Remember, the goal is to gather a group of people who are genuinely interested in what you have to say. It's not about having the longest list — it's about having the right people on that list. So, as you build your email list, consider who would find your emails the most helpful. This is a critical step in figuring out which email marketing is best for college students.

Why Segmentation Matters in Email Marketing

Okay, so you've built an email list. Great job! But here's the thing - not everyone on your list is the same. Some might be first-year students, while others might be on the brink of graduation. Some might be interested in sports, others in arts. This is where segmentation comes into play.

Segmentation is like sorting your email list into different buckets based on shared characteristics. These could be academic year, major, interests, or how they joined your list. The idea? To send more targeted, relevant emails. Let's break it down:

  • Relevance is key: Imagine you're a History major and you keep receiving emails about the Chemistry club. Annoying, right? Segmentation helps you send emails about things people care about. This way, your emails are less likely to end up in the trash.
  • Boost engagement: When emails are relevant, people are more likely to open them, read them, and take action. This means higher open rates, click rates, and more active engagement with your content.
  • Build stronger relationships: By sending targeted emails, you show your audience that you understand and value their interests. This helps to build trust and stronger relationships with your email subscribers.

So, segmentation is like the secret sauce that can make your email marketing much more effective. It's a tool that helps answer the question: which email marketing is best for college students? Because at the end of the day, the best email marketing strategy is the one that reaches the right people with the right message.

Tips for Creating Engaging Content

Now, let's get to the heart of the matter: the content. The most carefully segmented email list won't mean much if your content doesn't hit the mark. So, how can you create engaging content that will make your subscribers want to click and read?

  • Know your audience: This ties back to segmentation. If you know your audience well, you'll have a better idea of what they want to read about. Are they into sports, arts, or tech? Use this information to craft content that speaks to their interests.
  • Be clear and concise: College students are busy — they don't have time to read long, complicated emails. Get to the point quickly and keep your messages short and sweet.
  • Use catchy subject lines: The subject line is the first thing your subscribers see. Make it catchy, interesting, and relevant to the email content to encourage opens.
  • Add visuals: A picture is worth a thousand words, right? Use images, infographics, or even GIFs to make your emails more appealing and engaging. Just remember to keep them relevant to your content.
  • Include a clear call-to-action: What do you want your subscribers to do after reading your email? Whether it's attending an event, signing a petition, or joining a club, make sure to include a clear and compelling call-to-action.

Creating engaging content is a crucial step in determining which email marketing is best for college students. If you can grab their attention and provide value, you're on your way to email marketing success.

How to Use Automation in Email Marketing

Okay, so we've covered creating engaging content, but what about sending it out? That's where automation comes in. Automation can be a lifesaver when you're juggling classes, extracurriculars, and maybe even a part-time job. Here's how you can use it to your advantage:

  • Schedule emails in advance: Have a big event coming up? Schedule your email announcements in advance. It's one less thing to worry about when crunch time comes.
  • Set up automated responses: Let's say somebody signs up for your club's mailing list. You can set up an automated welcome email to go out as soon as they join. It's a nice way to say "hello" and give them some information about your club.
  • Use triggers: Triggers are actions that your subscribers take, like clicking a link in your email. You can set up automated emails to respond to these actions. For example, if a subscriber clicks a link about ticket sales for an event, you could follow up with an email about event details.
  • Try drip campaigns: Drip campaigns are a series of emails sent out over time. They can be a great way to keep your audience engaged without overwhelming them with too much information at once.

So, when considering which email marketing is best for college students, remember that automation can be a game changer. It can save you time, keep you organized, and help you engage with your audience in a timely and relevant way.

Importance of a Mobile-Friendly Email Design

Now, let's talk about how your emails look on a mobile device. Yes, we all love our laptops, but let's be real — we're college students. We're on our phones. A lot. So it makes sense to ensure our emails look great on mobile devices, too.

  • Easy to read: On a smaller screen, readability is key. Make sure your text is large enough to read without squinting, and use a clear, simple font. Because no one likes to zoom in just to read an email, right?
  • Use responsive design: Responsive design means your email automatically adjusts to fit the screen it's viewed on. So whether your subscribers are checking their email on a phone, tablet, or desktop, your message will look its best.
  • Check your images: Images can make or break an email on a mobile device. Make sure they're not too large (which can slow down load times) or too small (which can be hard to see on a small screen).
  • Test, test, test: Before sending out your email, check how it looks on different devices. Some email marketing platforms even have a preview feature that lets you see how your email will appear on various screen sizes.

When you're considering which email marketing is best for college students, remember that a mobile-friendly design is a must. After all, we want our messages to be seen — and seen at their best — no matter where our subscribers are, or what device they're on.

How to Personalize Your Email Campaigns

Let's face it: No one likes to feel like a number. And that's where personalized emails come in. But how do you make your emails feel more personal? Here are some tips:

  • Use their name: It's a simple step, but using someone's name in an email can make them feel more connected to your message. Most email marketing platforms let you automatically add each subscriber's name to your emails.
  • Know your audience: If you're emailing fellow college students, talk to them like college students. Use language that resonates with your audience and references to shared experiences or interests.
  • Segment your list: Not every email will be relevant to every subscriber. By segmenting your list, you can send targeted emails that are more likely to be of interest to each subscriber.
  • Send relevant content: The best way to make your emails feel personal is to make them relevant. If you're emailing about a study group, for example, make sure the content of your email is all about study tips and resources.

Remember, the goal of personalizing your email campaigns is to make your subscribers feel like you're talking directly to them. So when you're thinking about which email marketing is best for college students, consider how well each platform lets you personalize your emails. The more personal your emails feel, the more likely your subscribers are to engage with them.

How to Track and Analyze Your Campaigns

So, you've sent out your first email campaign. High five! But wait, how do you know if it worked? It's all about tracking and analyzing.

  • Open Rates: This tells you how many people opened your email. It's a good first clue about how well your subject line worked.
  • Click-Through Rates: This is the percentage of email recipients who clicked on one or more links in an email. It gives you an idea of how interesting or relevant your content was.
  • Bounce Rates: This shows how many emails didn't reach their intended recipient — maybe due to an incorrect email address or a full inbox. You want this number to be low.
  • Unsubscribe Rates: This one is self-explanatory. It tells you how many people clicked on the "unsubscribe" link. If this number is high, it's time to rethink your strategy.

By keeping an eye on these metrics, you can get a sense of what's working and what's not. And remember, don't get discouraged if your first few emails aren't home runs. It takes time to figure out which email marketing is best for college students — or any audience for that matter. Keep tweaking and testing until you find the sweet spot.

How to Improve Email Deliverability Rates

After you've sent out your well-crafted email, the last thing you want is for it to end up in the dreaded spam folder. Don't worry, we've got some tips to help improve your email deliverability rates:

  • Verify Your Email List: Make sure your email list is clean. This means it doesn't include any fake or inactive email addresses that could lower your deliverability rates.
  • Keep Your Emails Relevant: If your emails provide value, students are more likely to open them. Remember, the more your emails are opened, the less likely they are to be marked as spam.
  • Don’t Use Spammy Subject Lines: Avoid using caps lock, exclamation points, and spam trigger words in your subject lines. Also, misleading subject lines are a big no-no.
  • Maintain a Good Sending Reputation: This means regularly sending out emails but avoiding spam-like behavior. ISPs, or Internet Service Providers, keep an eye on this.

Improving deliverability rates is an important part of figuring out which email marketing is best for college students. Remember, an email that doesn't reach an inbox is an opportunity missed. So, keep these tips in mind and watch your deliverability rates soar!

Why Testing Email Campaigns is Important

Oh, the number of times I've hit send on an email, only to spot a typo a second later! Sound familiar? Just as proofreading is key in writing a paper, testing is crucial in email marketing. Here's why:

  • Spot Errors: From broken links to misspelled words, testing your email campaign helps you catch mistakes before they reach your audience. After all, you wouldn't want a silly typo to distract from your message, right?
  • Ensure Compatibility: Your email might look great on your device, but what about on others? Testing helps ensure your email displays correctly across different devices and email clients.
  • Optimize Performance: By testing different subject lines, call-to-actions, and content, you can find out what resonates best with your audience. This can help improve open and click-through rates.

When determining which email marketing is best for college students, always remember to test your campaigns. It might seem like an extra step, but trust me, it can make a huge difference in the success of your email marketing efforts.

How to Create an Effective Email Marketing Strategy

Alright, so you've got the basics down, but how do you put it all together? That's what I'm here to help with. Let's dive into how to create an effective email marketing strategy, specifically tailored for college students.

  1. Define your goals: Before anything else, decide what you want to achieve with your email marketing. Is it to increase event attendance? Perhaps you want to boost involvement in a club or organization? Defining your goals will guide your strategy.
  2. Know your audience: Understanding the needs and interests of college students is key. Think about it: if you're a night owl, would you appreciate an email blast at 6 am? Probably not. Consider when and how often your audience would like to receive emails.
  3. Deliver value: Nobody likes spam. Instead of sending emails for the sake of sending emails, make sure each one provides value. This could be updates, discounts, tips, or even a good laugh.
  4. Be consistent: Consistency can help build anticipation and trust among your audience. Whether it's a weekly newsletter or monthly updates, stick to a schedule.
  5. Measure success: Remember when we talked about defining your goals? It's equally important to measure them. Look at open rates, click-through rates, and feedback from your audience to see if you're meeting your goals and where you can improve.

So, which email marketing is best for college students? One that's well-planned, consistent, and provides value. Remember, email marketing isn't a one-size-fits-all approach. Test, tweak, and tailor your strategy to fit your audience and achieve your goals.

If you're a college student interested in leveraging email marketing for your career, don't miss out on the workshop 'Grow Your Career with an Email List' by Tom Glendinning. This workshop will teach you valuable strategies and techniques that you can use to make the most of email marketing in your professional journey.