Dedicated Email: How To Boost Your Ad ROI And Simplify Targeting with Email Ads

If you’re looking at your advertising strategy wondering how to make your display and social ads more effective, boost your ROI, and spend less time trying to target your elusive ideal customer, it might be time for a change.

Dedicated email advertising can be the remix that your digital advertising strategy needs. With Americans using more and more ad blockers, you have to find new ways to reach them all the time.

That’s where email advertising comes in—you can reach users where they’re paying attention, through a source they already trust.

Ready to breathe new life into your ad strategy? It’s time to try dedicated email.

What is Dedicated Email Advertising?

Dedicated email advertising, also called email drop, dedicated e-blast, newsletter blast, and email list rental, is an advertising method where a publisher sends a message on behalf of an advertiser.

This differs from buying an email list since the advertiser never actually sees the email addresses of subscribers.

Instead, you as an advertiser simply send along the email content (usually as HTML) to your publishing partner, who then sends the email to their list.

In email sponsorship, another form of email advertising, advertiser content appears alongside regular newsletter content, instead of taking up the entire email. Email sponsorship is less expensive, but results in less engagement as well.

Dedicated Email _ Example from Wanderfull

For example, in this ad, Paved publisher Wanderfull sent this ad on behalf of advertising partner Silk Therapeutics.

Wanderfull kept the header on the top of this email to let readers know where it was coming from and why they were getting this ad. Other than that, though, all of the content in the email is provided by the advertiser.

Why try Dedicated Email?

The reasons for trying dedicated email are simple. If you aren’t seeing the results you’d like from social media and display ads, dedicated email offers and opportunity to meet potential customers where they are highly engaged—the inbox.

Americans love their email so much that 79 percent of people admit to checking their email on vacation, according to a survey by Adobe.

Meanwhile, your display ads are less effective than ever: PageFair’s 2017 report showed that ad blockers saw 30 percent growth year over year from Dec 2015–Dec 2016.

For a more effective ad strategy, dedicated email is worth a try. How can it help you? Here are the top reasons our advertiser community loves dedicated email:

Boost Your ROI

One of the biggest appeals for dedicated email is the ROI potential. That’s why we include an ROI calculator on every publisher profile in our Paved marketplace.

Dedicated Email _ ROI Calculator From Paved

At Paved, we’ve found that our top performing publishers have a Cost Per Click (CPC) below $1.50, and the average CPC of email advertising through Paved is $0.83.

Compare that to your CPC for social media or display ads. For instance, the average Facebook ad campaign CPC hovers around $1.86 across industries.

While your specific CPC will depend on the list size, CPM, and click rates of the publishers you work with, it is worth a try to see how low you can go.

Send those readers to an optimized landing page with a great conversion rate, and dedicated email can quickly become a crucial part of a well-rounded lead gen strategy.

Simplify Targeting

You’re probably used to a particular process for targeting users in your advertising, based on your guesses for what your ideal avatar might be interested in.

Email advertising allows you to target potential customers, too, but in a completely different way. Instead of targeting based on pages they like, or location, or even search terms, you can target based on interest.

When someone signs up to receive emails from a given newsletter on a particular topic, it is reasonable to assume they are highly interested in that topic. After all, trusting a newsletter with your email address, and giving them space in your inbox, is a commitment.

The key to effective targeting in dedicated email advertising is to choose newsletters that align with your own niche. While it can be tempting to go with larger, more general lists, you’ll see better results with niche-focused lists.

Borrow Authority

If you’re looking to get your name out as a newer product or brand, it can be helpful to lean on influencers and popular publications to raise awareness.

Even if you’re an established brand, it can be helpful to use a publisher’s name to get awareness with a particular audience.

With dedicated email, your message comes into a reader’s inbox with the publisher’s name on it. Not only does this make your email more likely to be opened, but it also gives you a chance to borrow authority from a publisher that has already built a trusting community of readers.

Find Email Lists

Ready to give dedicated email a try? If you’re looking to find the a publisher to work with, there are a few ways you can find the right partner for your brand.

First, begin by finding publishers within your niche. You can look on social media sites or begin with a Google search. Start by looking for newsletters in your topic area, and then go to their website and see if they have an “advertise” or “work with me” page.

You can even subscribe to related email newsletters and see if you receive dedicated email ads as a subscriber.

Or, try asking around at your company to see if any of your employees subscribe to related email lists.

If you use Paved, you can search the Paved marketplace to find publishers within your niche. Browse by topic or enter related search terms to find publishers you might want to work with.

Once you’ve found a publisher you want to work with, ask for a media kit.

If you use Paved, you can consider the publisher’s Paved profile their media kit, since it will contain the same information.

Pay attention to the elements of the media kit that matter, including the publisher’s niche, audience profile, and engagement metrics, like open and click rates.

Look at a few past editions of the newsletter to get a feel for the audience and see if the topics covered are a good fit for your brand.

Finally, look at the pricing information in the media kit and run some calculations of potential CPC for a campaign based on the rates and metrics they provide.

CPC and Dedicated Email Drop Metrics

Ultimately, any new advertising method is about results, and dedicated email should be no different.

Dedicated email ads are paid on a cost per thousand (CPM) basis. This rate is based on the number of subscribers on a list that will receive the email, not the number of subscribers that actually open or engage with your email.

That means that, while CPM is an important number to know, it isn’t necessarily the most helpful number for understanding the effectiveness of your dedicated campaigns. Plus, it doesn’t make it easy to compare results across different kinds of advertising campaigns, like social media ads.

That’s why, here at Paved, we focus on CPC or even cost of acquisition (CPA), more than CPM. To calculate the potential CPC of a given campaign:

  • Divide the number of subscribers by the publisher’s click rate (20,000 subscribers, with a 10 percent click rate = 2000 clicks expected for a campaign).
  • Figure out the total cost for a campaign (20,000 subscribers, with a $25 CPM = $500).
  • Divide the total cost of the campaign by the expected clicks ($500 / 2000 clicks = 25 cent CPC).

You can combine that CPC calculation with the conversion rate on your own landing page to get the approximate CPA of a potential campaign:

  • Divide the total expected clicks by your landing page conversion rate. (2000 clicks, with a 3% conversion rate = 60 conversions).
  • Divide the total cost of the campaign by the expected conversions from the campaign ($500 / 60 conversions = $8.33 CPA).

It’s easy enough to run these quick calculations for each publisher you’re considering working with.

Again, if you use Paved, you can quickly and easily run these calculations on any publisher profile using our ROI calculator.

Dedicated Email _ ROI Calculator CPA Calculation

Trying calculating potential CPC and CPA with slightly higher and lower click rates, just to get a sense of the range of results you can expect. Obviously, past performance isn’t a perfect gauge of the results you can expect, but it is a helpful base to calculate from.

Now, you can compare the results of your potential dedicated email campaign with other advertising methods you’ve tried. Then, it’s time to get started.

Ready to design and send your first dedicated campaign? Check out our Email Advertising Best Practices and Email Campaign Checklist before you hit send.

Round Out Your Advertising Strategy with Dedicated Email

If you’re looking to round out your advertising, it’s time to start trying dedicated email. In the age of ad blockers and banner blindness, getting in the inbox can be the key to getting your messaging seen.

Ready to jump into a dedicated email advertising strategy? With Paved, you can find, communicate with, and pay publishers all in one place. Sign up for Paved today to see how easy email advertising can be.