How to combine your email and social strategies

Customer retention and customer loyalty are super important right now. In a turbulent and busy market, where the consumer has plenty of choices, you want your brand to stand out as a positive experience.

One way you can enhance the customer experience, beyond the header and footer of your emails, is to look at your other channels. Social media is where it’s at. With 4.59 billion people, that’s over half of the world’s population, having a social media account, it’s a safe bet your customers are already on social media. The channel has evolved hugely in recent years, and is now a marketers dream.

Marketers are increasingly prioritizing social media in their digital marketing strategy. In a study of B2C marketers in the UK, when asked what their primary marketing channel was, social media came out on top at 25.65%, followed closely by website at 20.83%, and then email coming in third place at 12.74%.

So, what do email and social media have in common? Your customers of course. Our recent report into the value exchange customers expect when signing up to a brand, found that a third of consumers visit and/or engage with the brands they’re subscribed to on social media every day. This cross-channel population means it’s a ready-made opportunity for companies to utilize cross-channel strategy to grow brand loyalty, trust, and retention within their customer base.

Email and social media are undeniably two key digital marketing channels. Both channels offer an excellent way to communicate with your customers and prospects, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. But how can you use them together to improve customer trust, generate customer buy-in, and achieve the ultimate goal in marketing, create loyal customers? Let’s take a look.

1. Include social icons to your emails

Email footer with social icons

Let’s start simple, and effective. Use that valuable real estate that is your email campaign to advertise your social channels. Include social icons for the platforms you’re active on in the footer of all of your emails. Once you’ve added this to your email template, it’s a super quick and easy win that will continue to work, with no ongoing work from you required. Dreamy. 

2. Shout out things that are on each other’s channels

Social competitions email

Let customers on each channel know what’s going on elsewhere. If you’re running a competition on your social media, let your email subscribers know. Have a block in your campaign explaining the competition, and encourage your email subscribers to head over to your social channels and enter. Include a clear CTA, and you’ll soon see your followers engaging on both channels. This example from ice-cream brand Jude’s does this well, the email points people towards their social channels, and also placates anyone not on social media by letting them know there’s a newsletter competition coming soon.

Equally if your email subscribers are about to get early access to a sale, or an email exclusive discount code, shout about it on your social media channels. Use email-only initiatives like this to entice your social media followers into signing up to your emails. Include a clear way to sign up to your emails, either by a form within the social media platform itself, or a CTA link to your website and watch those subscriber numbers rise.

3. Utilize hashtags across channels

Email with hashtags

Hashtags, they’re traditionally a huge part of the social media scene, but there’s no reason you can’t bring this into your email campaigns too. Pepper them into your email copy, especially if you have a core brand hashtag that you tend to use.

Including hashtags in your email campaigns mean that your subscribers will be familiar with them, and will use them when interacting with you on social media, possibly even when creating that valuable UGC. This example from Top Cashback is exactly how it should be done.

4. Encourage newsletter sign ups on your social profiles

Lots of social media channels offer functionality to collect email addresses from within the platform. Utilize this technology to run social campaigns which collect email subscribers, and also add a link to your sign-up form in organic posts like NASA demonstrate here.

Our recent report found that people often sign-up to a brand’s emails to get discounts and to be a part of a loyalty scheme. If you offer these benefits to your email subscribers, use this as the hook to attract new subscribers.

5. Retargeting ads

Social media ads are really valuable to a marketer. Use the data you have on customers who are engaging, but not converting, and hit them with social ads which target their interest. This example from Coursera is serving Instagram story ads to a user who signed up to their newsletter, but hasn’t yet converted. This is a great way of keeping front-of-mind with your prospects as they travel around the web.

6. Overall increased touchpoints

Overall, social media and email marketing working together is all about the cross-channel experience. The internet is a huge place, if you can have your brand popping up in different places across the web, you’re ensuring that your brand stays front-of-mind for your customers and prospects. You want your messaging on both channels to be in sync, and complimentary of each other. This example from Hotel Chocolat shows that the two channels are in sync, sharing a similar message and imagery. Adding in more temptations to purchase can only be a good thing.


Email and social media are both incredibly powerful channels in their own right. When utilized to work together, they will be sure to keep your customers engaged, and your brand front-of-mind as your customers navigate the online world.

Our recent report discovered that respondents visited and/or engaged with the brands they’re subscribed to on social media more frequently than they visited a brand’s website. A huge 31% of respondents said they engage with a brand’s social media every day, and 57% do so at least once a week.

There’s no doubt that your email subscribers, and a whole world of prospects, are on social media, so tap into this pool of opportunity. Utilize this massive audience by further sharing your brand’s message, showcasing your product offering, and using the channel in tandem to your existing marketing mix. Combining the power of email and social media will lead to a winning cross-channel strategy that sees real results.

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