What do potential clients look for in freelance email marketing specialists?

What do potential clients look for in email marketing specialists?

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Email marketing is alive and well. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. It is one of the most popular, lucrative, and cost-effective marketing channels out there. Studies have found that, on average, for every $1 spent on email marketing, companies earn an incredible $44.



The bottom line is that skilled email marketing specialists will always be in demand. It is up to you to put yourself in the best position to get projects. So, spare some time to understand what potential clients look for when hiring a freelance email marketing specialist.

Before we get into the nitty-gritty, let’s define what exactly email marketing is and what does an email marketing specialist do.

What is email marketing?

Email marketing is the practice of reaching out to potential and existing customers to educate them, create awareness about your product/service, turn them into prospects, upsell or cross-sell, or get them to subscribe/purchase/sign-up/upgrade. 

What does an email marketing specialist do?

An email marketing specialist is expected to handle segmentation and growth of email lists, creation and design of email copies, A/B testing, among other things. They have to be skilled in email copywriting, email template designing, list building, and email marketing software.

As a freelance marketplace, we at TapChief, regularly interact with businesses who are looking to hire email marketing specialists. Based on that, we’ve identified different projects available in the market and the skills and the qualities that clients expect from candidates.

What are the most common types of email marketing projects out there? 

From early-stage startups to large MNCs, every company needs email marketing specialists. Everyone knows it is one of the most cost-effective marketing channels out there. In addition to that, email is the preferred channel among customers to receive communications from businesses. 

But, at the same time, email inboxes are a highly-competitive space. What’s more, spam regulations, exemplary search filters, and other product innovations (think Promotions Tab on Gmail) have made email marketing harder. And companies have realised that they can’t improvise their way to success. There needs to be proper planning and a concerted effort — from selecting tools to interpreting campaign numbers.

As a result, more and more businesses are now hiring freelance email marketing specialists from platforms such as TapChief. That too for all sorts of projects — from consultation sessions to month-long projects.

To help you prepare yourself, we’ve compiled a list of some of the most common types of email marketing project requests that we get from clients.

1. Set up and manage the client’s email list

You will have to work with the client to get their email campaigns up and running — from determining campaign goals, creating opt-in forms and designing lead magnets, to scheduling the first campaign.

In such cases, the client would most often be a small business or an early-stage startup. They will expect you to play a proactive role from the start, and also, implement industry best practices. 

2. Set up email campaigns for special occasions

Studies have shown that email contributes to 20 percent of online holiday site visits. Therefore, companies are getting more serious about their holiday campaigns. They have started hiring freelance email marketing experts to help them design and execute these campaigns.

Typically, you will have to help the client decide what product/service to promote, then create a promotion schedule, assist them with copies and email templates, and then execute it.

3. Manage migration from one email marketing software to another

With so many email marketing software available in the market, you will often see companies shifting one product to another. It could be down to cost-related or functional reasons. To manage the process, companies often turn to freelance email marketing specialists.

With email being such an important channel, they seek your expertise to ensure the migration goes smoothly. Things might vary from client to client, but fundamentally they want to ensure they don’t lose out on their data, schedules, templates, and other flows. In some cases, you may even be asked to give your recommendation as to which tools to use.

4. Run a cold-email campaign for the client

For most businesses, cold emailing is a critical part of their outreach and sales efforts. But, running such a campaign requires a high degree of expertise.

Email marketing requirement

Therefore, companies are hiring freelance email marketing specialists who understand the nitty-gritty of cold emailing  — GDPR laws and CAN-SPAM act, how to interpret the analytics, how the sales funnel works, how to personalise the copy, what kind of copy works, and more. 

Should you be hired, you will have to collaborate with the sales team or marketing team and set up or run a pilot campaign. 

5. Optimise email campaigns for customer retention 

Over the past few years, companies have started realising the importance of customer retention and how it affects their bottom line. This is why you see them putting more effort in their re-engagement emails and user onboarding emails. 

This is another reason why companies are seeking email specialists. They want someone who can help them create better user onboarding flows, craft engaging copies that match the user journey, personalise/customise the campaign, and can analyse and interpret the data well. 

Critical skills that clients look for in email marketing specialists

Email marketing, like everything marketing, changes very quickly. As a specialist, you have to stay abreast of the latest in your industry. But it is almost impossible to keep up-to-date with everything that’s happening in your industry. That’s why we’ve listed down the most important and in-demand ones.

  • List building: You should have an understanding of everything from capturing leads, segmenting your list based on user demographics and behaviour, to cleaning email lists and maintaining list hygiene.
  • Lead nurturing: You should have a thorough grasp of how the sales funnel works, how to ease your prospects through the funnel, and how to drive business objectives using email marketing.
  • Data privacy: Over the past few years, privacy violations by companies have become a regular feature. Therefore, people are more concerned about their personal data than ever, and governments are framing stricter privacy laws. So, you must be aware of data protection policies and regulations.
  • Personalisation: Email inbox is a highly-competitive space, and it is very easy for your emails to get lost. To stand out and grab the attention, you need to make sure your email campaigns are highly personalised. You will have to take into consideration everything from previous interactions to purchase history. So, it would be best if you were up-to-date with the latest trends in personalisation.
  • Mobile optimisation: A remarkable 61.9 percent of all emails are now opened and read on mobile devices. So, you must have a clear understanding of mobile optimisation and related best practices. More often than not, clients will demand it.

Qualities that clients look for in email marketing specialists

Every freelance client and every project will be different. Requirements, objectives, expectations and even the style of working will differ. But, there are certain essential qualities that clients look for in every email marketing specialists. 

We’ve listed the important ones below. The key is to highlight these qualities in your portfolio, resume, cover letter, and client interviews. It will help them understand that you are the right fit for the job.

  • Collaborative: An email marketing specialist can’t operate in silos. You have to work closely with founders, marketing heads, copywriters, product managers, designers, and even, user researchers, depending on the type of project.
  • Curious: You have to convey to potential clients that you are always willing to learn. So, highlighting that you are up-to-date with the latest trends, tools, and changes in your industry will help.
  • Empathetic: Whether you are setting up a user onboarding campaign or a cold email campaign, you need to think from your audience’s perspective. You need to be able to understand their problems, challenges, goals, and dreams. This will definitely help you create more relatable and effective campaigns.
  • Analytical: Every email campaign you run will result in the creation of vast amounts of data. You need to be able to analyse and make sense of these numbers. For instance, rather than merely reporting there’s been a drop in open rate or click rate, you should tell the client what caused it.
  • Excellent communicator: Copies form a large part of any email campaigns. But, that’s not all, you will have to communicate daily with product, design, content, and even, analytics teams. And you have to make sure the other party knows what exactly do you need, why do you need it, and what is the end objective.

How to improve your chances of getting clients?

Ultimately, it is the client who decides if you are the right fit for their project. But, it is up to you to influence their decision and make sure it is in your favour.

How do you do it? For starters, ensure you have an impressive portfolio and make sure you nail the interview. We’ve compiled a few tips to help you with this:

1. Elaborate on your experience 

Include the list of tools you have worked on, your responsibilities, how did you contribute to the growth of the organisation, and other accomplishments.

Email marketing experience


2. Curate and showcase your work samples

Always categorise your samples and explain the context of each one. Let them know that you have a thorough grasp of the projects you worked on.

Email marketing portfolio


3. Source testimonials from happy clients 

Persuasive testimonials can sway the opinion of even the most hesitant of clients. They give you an aura of credibility and authenticity.  

Email marketing testimonials


Wrapping up

Now that you know what clients expect, spend some time to optimise your LinkedIn profile, portfolio, and resume accordingly. Once you are done with that, start applying for freelance email marketing projects on TapChief.


Sucheth is a Content Marketer at TapChief. He is a marketer by day and an avid reader by night.