7 Email Marketing Interview Questions (With Sample Answers)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 11 May 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Email marketing can be a useful tool for reaching consumers. Many marketing strategies and campaigns, therefore, utilise this practice because of its cost-effectiveness and simplicity. If you are applying for a role that involves the use of email marketing, then knowing some relevant interview questions can be quite useful. In this article, we explain what email marketing interview questions are and give you a list of seven examples, together with an explanation and sample answer for each.

What are email marketing interview questions?

Email marketing interview questions typically involve asking the interviewee about the implementation, advantages and best practices of email marketing. This means that you could encounter these questions in many marketing roles. These questions are going to help the interviewer assess how well you understand email marketing, whether you know how best to implement it and your knowledge of certain terminologies.

Related: Types Of Online Marketing Jobs (With Salaries And Duties)

Commonly asked email marketing interview questions

Below are seven examples of commonly asked email marketing interview questions, together with an explanation and sample answer for each:

1. What do you know about email marketing?

Introductory questions like these are quite common, as they allow the interviewer to assess how much you know about the basics. They can sometimes phrase it like this to make it sound more open-ended, although the question is still one of simple definition. Try to keep your answer relatively brief compared to some others you might give, as you are likely going to get further opportunities to go into more detail.

Example answer: 'Email marketing is the use of emails to reach potential customers and build a relationship. This is a direct form of marketing that scales well. It is usually part of a series of tactics, rather than a standalone method for reaching consumers.'

Related: Guide To Email Writing Format In English (With Tips)

2. Do you think email marketing is still relevant in a world of social media?

A question like this helps the interviewer understand how well you are aware of the merits of email marketing. It is important to understand that social media marketing and email marketing do not compete with each other, as they are separate tools with their own merits. The correct answer to this is always 'yes', but the interviewer is also going to expect you to justify your answer. This demonstrates that you know how and when to use email marketing to get the greatest benefit out of it.

Example answer: 'Yes, email marketing is still very relevant despite the rise of social media. This is because the two are very different and there are multiple things you can do with email marketing that would be impractical through social media. For example, social media involves numerous different platforms, each with its own best practices. Conversely, with an email, you just require an email address, to which you can send marketing material regardless of the provider of that address. It is impractical to individually message every follower on social media, so you are restricted to posts.

The issue with posts is that you cannot customise them to the individual user, whereas you can do this with an email. You can also organise your email list in various categories, like age, income and preferences. You can also get a lot more information from email marketing, such as click-through rates, bounce rates and conversion rates. This data can be very useful for analysts, who can derive useful insights. Not everybody has a social media account for every platform, but almost everybody has at least one email address, so the potential reach is greater in email marketing.'

3. What does email bounce mean? Are there different types?

This is an example of a terminological question. The interviewer wants to know if you understand the meaning of 'bounce' in email marketing. They might also ask you to elaborate further to assess your knowledge of this issue. Since this is not an open-ended question, you can go into some detail without going off-topic.

Example answer: 'Email bounce means that the email is undeliverable because of some technical reasons. There are two types of bounce, namely a hard bounce and a soft bounce. A hard bounce means that the delivery failure is permanent, so repeated attempts are going to be unsuccessful. This usually means that the email address is invalid or is no longer active. A soft bounce is a temporary failure to deliver, which means that a subsequent attempt could be successful. This could be because the recipient's inbox is full, there was a typo from the sender or a temporary server problem.'

4. How do you measure the success of an email marketing campaign?

This question is a bit more open-ended than some others, but there are only a few correct answers that you can give. The main topic here is success metrics, which may include email opening rates, subscription rates, click rates, conversions, reply rates, click-through rates, website traffic increases and referral increases. When you answer this question, try to pick multiple examples of success metrics rather than focusing on just one or two. You can always expand on some of these later or if the interviewer asks you to do so.

Example answer: 'There are various ways of measuring success, depending on the desired outcome. The primary way is to set predetermined success and failure criteria. This allows you to determine which levels indicate success. These criteria can be useful metrics like click-through rates, conversion rates, the rate of email replies, email-based subscription numbers, increased traffic to the website and open rates. If an email campaign offers free downloads of useful documents, then download rates can also be a useful metric. It is also vital that these are percentages or ratios, in addition to absolute numbers.'

Related: Top 20 Marketing Skills To Include On Your Resume

5. How would you increase our email subscriber list?

Practical questions like this can be quite common in these interviews, as your answer can demonstrate how much value you can bring to the company. If the interviewer specifically asks how you would do this for their company, they might also be interested in knowing if you have researched them. Researching a company for which you are going to interview is usually a good idea and demonstrates your seriousness and commitment.

Example answer: 'There are multiple ways to increase a subscriber list. I would say that the two main ways are the formulation of the email itself and what you offer with it. In the case of your company, I have subscribed, but I feel that you could offer greater incentives to attract more subscribers. For example, I know that you have a series of free, downloadable e-books on your website. I would periodically offer these in exchange for subscriptions through email marketing campaigns. This can incentivise subscriptions and make the e-books more exclusive without attaching a price tag.'

6. How would you help us bring back former customers?

A common issue with email marketing is that some customers eventually lose interest, so it is the job of a marketer to find ways to attract them back to the company. The interviewer wants to know if you have some ideas regarding how to do this, rather than why this is necessary or beneficial. It can be a good idea to give more than one example of how you would do this, but try to avoid giving a long list.

Example answer: 'There are two ways which I have found to be very effective at encouraging old customers to return. The first of these is a returning customer discount. You can easily do this because you typically have a database of email addresses from former customers, so you can issue return customer discount codes that they can use at checkout for their purchases. These discounts can be quite generous but usually require a certain minimum spend.

The other way would be to use their purchase history and find new products that align with their preferences. If they have been unresponsive, they might be unaware of these products. Drawing their attention to these through an email can be a good approach, especially if you embed an attractive image of the new product. This product could be a replacement or complimentary product, depending on what is available and how long ago the customer made their purchase. You could also combine this with a discount code to make the offer even more attractive.'

7. Can you describe a failed email marketing campaign in which you were involved?

Asking about negative experiences is common in interviews. In this case, the interviewer wants to see that you are honest. They also want to know how you learn from your mistakes and how well you understand what went wrong.

Example answer: 'Yes, in a previous role, we tried to use an email marketing campaign to reach older consumers. We thought this would be better than social media marketing. Although we implemented everything perfectly, it failed because we did not understand our product, which was not suited to older consumers. This taught me that even the best marketing campaign is likely to fail if you do not understand the target audience.'

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