The Best Email Marketing Campaigns for a Recession

Carl Bleich
Carl Bleich

As turbulent economic times approach, companies all over the world are reevaluating their priorities to deal with a wide variety of new challenges. 

The time has never been better to double down on the best tool in your marketing arsenal — personalized email campaigns. Creating an email marketing campaign personalized with first-party data is the fuel you need to drive revenue in digital commerce

This starts with determining what the best email marketing strategy for a recession is — and using first-party data to determine how to best get your message across to your customer. 

What products do your customers want recommended to them? How and when do they want to receive these communications? How can an email campaign move customers along the journey with your brand? Those are all questions that can be easily answered when you’re sending personalized email campaigns with commerce data that’s backed by a customer data platform (CDP). 

Bearing in mind things like decreasing budgets, shrinking teams, and overworked marketers, let’s dive into some of the top email marketing campaigns you can run during a recession. 

Why You Should Prioritize Email 

Getting email marketing templates right to the point where customers take the desired action is based on an exact science — and will ultimately drive increased customer lifetime value and more revenue.

Investing both time and money into your email marketing campaigns can result in your company getting significantly more in return. Consider these stats

  • For every $1 you spend on email marketing, you can expect an average return of $36 
  • 61% of consumers enjoy receiving promotional emails weekly, and 38% would like emails to come even more frequently 
  • Email is used by over 4 billion people — over half of the world’s population 

Those are statistics that make doubling down on email marketing more than worth it. 

Furthermore, by building your email personalization around first-party and zero-party data, you guarantee that your personalization efforts are all-encompassing. And this goes further than just subject lines.

When used right, email ensures that your company is using its collected customer data to meaningfully transform the customer experience and drive brand loyalty. 

What Are the Best Email Marketing Campaigns for a Recession?

While there are a wide range of ways you can use email, we’ve selected a few campaigns that are effective at driving quick wins, especially during an economic downturn. 

Automated Welcome Email Series

An automated welcome email series is a set of emails triggered by a customer action that signals an interest in your company (i.e., account sign up, list subscription, or event registration). The email content in these emails typically conveys what your brand is all about to new customers. 

You can take your welcome series further by finding the best possible time to send an email, which can greatly boost open and conversion rates.

Optimal send time is a prediction model within Bloomreach Engagement that takes into account the past behavior of customers and calculates the time — rounded to an hour — when they are most likely to interact with your email. By applying this model to your welcome email series, you can reach individual customers at a time when they’re most likely to click or open your email, which is especially crucial when they first show interest in your brand.

Just look at furniture retailer DFS — the company included the optimal send time node in its automated welcome email series campaign, resulting in 3.9% more revenue compared to a control group

DFS specifically tailored its automated welcome email series to its furniture buyers’ cycle and how the company wants to craft customer journeys. The company delivers personalized, product-specific content based on what products it knows customers are interested in — all thanks to previously collected customer data. This is a great email marketing campaign example.

Personalized Product Recommendations

Sending personalized product recommendations is a great way to drive conversions. Plus, if you can cater your recommendations to each customers’ unique tastes and preferences, that magical experience can lead to lifelong customers. But in order to effectively personalize for each customer, you need the right data. Enter: zero-party data

Zero-party data is data that a customer intentionally and proactively shares with a brand. It can include preference center data, purchase intentions, personal contexts, and how an individual wants to be recognized by said brand. It has become increasingly important to companies across the globe as more consumers exercise increased caution around their data privacy.

My Jewellery, a clothing and jewelry retailer based in The Netherlands, used zero-party data to personalize product recommendations and send highly personalized emails offering relevant products to loyal customers. 

My Jewellery created the style profile test, a quiz that helps shoppers identify which pieces fit their own personal style, to gather zero-party data from interested visitors and repeat customers. The collected data helped My Jewellery easily recommend products that fit each customer’s style in future personalized marketing emails. 

My Jewellery could then pair this zero-party data with the first-party data it already had to be even more targeted with its personalized marketing emails to customers. And best of all? The quiz was a big hit with customers!

Personalized Video 

Another unique way to capture the attention of your customers? Personalized video campaigns sent via email. 

Video marketing has carved out its place as one of the best ways to connect with customers in today’s market. It’s cost effective, time efficient, and engaging for your customers. 86% of businesses use video marketing in some way, and 93% of marketers who use video say it’s an important part of their strategy.

MALL.CZ wanted to create a personalized video campaign to target computer gamers with a series of products online. The second season of MALL.TV’s “Life is a Game” series was used as the basis for a humorous video that pushed key products to a target audience. 

The personalized video campaign sent 20,000 personalized videos to the target audience with the help of Bloomreach Engagement, which played the part of the technical enablement with the data flow via webhooks and API. 

The results were overwhelmingly positive, as users who were targeted by the personalized video bought 701% more worth of products in the MALL.CZ shopping gallery compared to others who saw the same offer in a different manner. The personalized video “wowed” customers and got them to convert. 

Invest in the Best Email Marketing Campaigns With Bloomreach Engagement

What do all of the best email marketing campaigns have in common? They are powered by first-party data compliantly collected by a customer data platform and they provide your email subscribers with the most personalized content possible.

As recession-like economic conditions approach, tough decisions are being made at companies everywhere. Investing in a customer data platform with marketing automation capabilities to serve as your email marketing service will allow your company to not only drive revenue and brand loyalty, but also offer connected commerce experiences to your customers in trying times. 

Now’s the time to develop an informed first-party data strategy that feeds into your email campaigns. Soar past simply personalizing the subject line of an email and outpace other email marketing platforms with Bloomreach Engagement.

With the right single solution powering email and the rest of your marketing channels, you can win big with email marketing automation and personalization. Schedule a personalized demo of Bloomreach Engagement today to learn more. 

Learn more about relevant use cases for your D2C business.


Carl Bleich

Head of Content at Bloomreach

Carl works with Bloomreach professionals to produce valuable, customer-centric content. A trusted expert with over 15 years of experience, Carl loves exploring unique ways to turn problems into solutions within digital commerce. Read more from Carl here.

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