Apple have an email marketing problem

Simon JonesStuff

I tweeted the other day that Apple’s email marketing to phones is bad and it got me thinking about how bad it really is.


How bad is the problem?

In the grand scheme of things? Not bad at all. But, come on, this is the company that made the iPhone and EIGHT YEARS LATER they still haven’t got their email marketing to iPhone right.

Email marketing is a really important part of the marketing mix. It’s a reminder. It’s your shopfront in a lot of cases. It’s your way of getting in front of customers who already bought from you or people who will maybe buy from you in future.

That’s why I hate bad email marketing. Especially on phones.

The annoying thing is that it’s not hard to get an experience that works well on desktop and mobile. Apps like Mailchimp have updated their software so it has mobile testing as a default rather than a preference. When you create an email, you can see how it works on both devices. There are no excuses.



This email about Apple Pay, for example. The header text is readable. However, the Welcome to a new way to pay headline is the size I’d like to read the whole way through. Instead, they have a small headline body copy and an even smaller body copy. It’s almost unreadable on mobile.




It’s not just the size of the copy, either. Check out the double whammy of bad copy and awful formatting. Ouch. Remember, this is Apple who are meticulous about design.


It’s the same with the Apple Watch emails below. Great imagery, nice headline…but then the rest all falls down.




Who does it well?

There are some examples of really good email marketing that Apple could learn from. Brands like Tens, Airbnb, Graze and Paper get it very right.

Apple should be on that list.






How can you do email marketing better?

The quickest way to improve your email marketing is to find someone who knows what they’re doing and can show you an increase in whatever it is you want to measure. One of our clients, Oxford Online Pharmacy, see email marketing as a big part of their marketing mix. Since we took on their email marketing in November 2014 we’ve seen an increase of 198% in sales generated by emails.

198% in under a year.

How did we do it?

Research, testing and learning.

– Look at the data and use it
– Get the experience right on all devices
– Have clear, visible call to actions
– Eliminate anything that’s unnecessary
– Give the reader something interesting to do next

There’s a couple of examples of emails we’ve created below:




If you’d like to improve your email marketing, get in touch and let’s see what we can do together.