How to Analyze Competitors' Email Marketing Strategies

This guide covers identifying competitors, subscribing to their newsletters, and examining key elements like subject lines, content, design, frequency, and engagement metrics.
Written by
Published on
May 16, 2024

In today's competitive landscape, understanding how your competitors approach email marketing can provide valuable insights to enhance your own campaigns. Here's a step-by-step guide on how to analyze competitors' email marketing strategies effectively:

Identify Your Competitors

Start by listing your direct and indirect competitors. Use tools like Google Search, industry reports, and competitive research tools like Email Emu to identify key players in your niche.

Subscribe to Their Newsletters

Sign up for your competitors' email newsletters to receive their campaigns directly. Create a separate email account if necessary to keep your competitive research organized.

Analyze Email Content

Examine the content of your competitors' emails. Pay attention to:

  • Subject Lines: What types of subject lines are they using? Are they personalized, urgent, or benefit-oriented?
  • Email Copy: How is the content structured? Is it focused on storytelling, promotions, or educational content?
  • Visuals: What kind of images, videos, or graphics are included? Are they using branded visuals?
  • Call-to-Action (CTA): What CTAs are they using? Are they clear and compelling?

Evaluate Design and Layout

Analyze the design and layout of your competitors' emails. Look for:

  • Template Structure: Are they using single-column or multi-column layouts?
  • Mobile Responsiveness: How well do their emails render on mobile devices?
  • Branding Consistency: Are their emails consistent with their overall brand identity?

Assess Email Frequency and Timing

Track how often your competitors send emails and at what times. Use tools like Email Emu to gather data on email frequency and timing.

Analyze Engagement Metrics

While you can't access competitors' internal metrics, you can infer engagement through visible indicators:

  • Subject Line Performance: Use tools like CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer to evaluate the strength of their subject lines.
  • Social Proof: Look for social media sharing buttons and the level of engagement their emails receive.

Examine Segmentation and Personalization

Pay attention to how your competitors segment their email lists and personalize their content. Look for:

  • Audience Segments: Are they targeting different segments with tailored content?
  • Personalization: Are they using recipient names, personalized product recommendations, or other personalized elements?

Review Compliance and Best Practices

Ensure your competitors are following best practices and compliance guidelines:

  • Unsubscribe Options: Are there clear and easy-to-find unsubscribe links?
  • Privacy Policies: Do they mention compliance with GDPR, CAN-SPAM, or other regulations?

Benchmark Against Your Own Campaigns

Compare your findings against your own email marketing strategies. Identify areas where you can improve or innovate based on your competitors' strengths and weaknesses.


Analyzing competitors' email marketing strategies can reveal valuable insights to refine your own campaigns. By understanding their content, design, frequency, engagement, and compliance, you can develop a more effective and competitive email marketing strategy.

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