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Guide to Mapping the Customer Journey in Email Marketing

Understand how email marketing helps customers find businesses and drive sales. Learn about the customer journey from click to cart.

Team Omind

Team Omind

March 29, 2024

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Introduction to Customer Journey in Email Marketing

Despite being one of the oldest online marketing methods in the book, email marketing is still as relevant today. Emails connect customers to brands and are crucial in mapping a customer’s journey through your brand experience. Email marketing has evolved significantly over the years to turn out to be a precise tool for connecting with customers and prospects. 

Sophisticated email campaigns can successfully introduce new offers, driving customer engagement. Customer journey mapping offers a complete analysis of engagement, modifying the marketing campaign on an as-is basis.    

The best advantage with emails is that they are straightforward, and delivered directly to the inbox. You see, there’s no point in missing an email.  An email’s journey begins with the ‘unread’ status. From there on, it’s either discarded or accepted.  

The take-it-or-leave-it aspect of emails is all the more exciting to pitch a new offer. Besides, emails may be quickly able to connect emotionally, leading customers to action. These marketing precepts, once interlinked with the customer journey, can be an invaluable resource in establishing rapport with the buyer.  

Mapping the aspects of a customer journey presents a clear overview of the direction of shaping the marketing campaign. Email interaction data presents an actionable picture of whether a product has elicited interest at launch or lost steam. Moreover, emails help customers feel engaged and appreciated by the brand, both essential aspects of building brand loyalty. 

Defining the Email Customer Journey  

An email customer journey consists of the touchpoints of customer interaction with the brand through one or more emails connecting the bridge. The more engaging emails are those with an enticing subject line, generating interest in the product. Email campaigns are arranged following a study of customer interaction metrics with the brand. Email campaigns are iterative, and with every new mail, a new line of brand interaction is charted. 

Email marketing not only generates customer engagement but also takes it forward. With emerging trends in AI, automated email marketing campaigns serve as a crucial extension of human customer support. 

An email generates interest, which leads to inquiry, from where a human agent takes up the task. Many companies are also of the view that complementing emails with virtual chat support can go a long way to make customers immediately feel at home with the brand.   

Why Map the Email Customer Journey?

Mapping the Customer Journey in Email Marketing

An email customer journey map offers a better and clearer understanding of your brand’s importance in the context of the customer. You can holistically see every aspect that connects you to customer pain points, arming you with the data and resources to alleviate these aspects and offer a solution. 

Emails also supplement to bring repeat business with the brand, as people are inclined to interact when you intend to. Your interest in improving the life of the customer through new products and services comes forward as a priority, thereby helping to furnish deeper brand loyalty over time. 

Email marketing can be a great tool in facilitating customers with resources, should they wish to get in touch. In fact, customer relationships with emails start with information on new deals, generating interest, which is further acted upon through successive campaigns.  

Identifying customer touchpoints is a crucial benefit of email marketing, a foreknowledge that lets brands create opportunities when there seem to be none. These opportunities, made interesting by the unique data of customer touchpoints, turn into points of sales with proper efforts.      

Modern AI-driven data resources can help companies map all the stages of the customer journey down to the smallest details. These details let you understand why someone would delete your email without reading it, and why would someone else take action on the same mail. 

Email marketing is an extension of chat support, but it must be facilitated with a definite content strategy that brings results. With resourceful email marketing, you can obtain the data for customer segmentation, aiding in the ultimate decision-making process

Stages of the Email Customer Journey

Email Customer Journey

Brand Awareness: Strategies for initiating contact via email

The process starts with obtaining the addresses to send the mail to. Personalizing the first email to generate brand awareness can go a long way. Using the name of the customer in the subject line of the mail generates immediate interest in what the brand is offering. 

The contact email also outlines the means and ways how accepting the offer can be the keys to a better lifestyle, and how easy it is to follow up with the offer.   

Lead Acquisition: Techniques for capturing interest and information

Lead acquisition is the next step after brand awareness. Emails should be interactive and replete with all the resources that make customers engage directly with the brand. Anyone reading the mail should be able to feel the importance of accepting the offer rather than discarding it. 

Also, lead acquisition should be simplified rather than being presented as a complex and unreliable process. The more trust your emails will be able to generate, the better they are at connecting emotionally with the customer. Make sure the email has your full contact details, and a quick link to start chatting with your support team. 

Research and Consideration: Engaging potential customers with informative content

As more data comes in, you will find it easier to segment customers at different stages of their journeys. Some mailboxes never reply, and that’s okay! What you target is a significant percentage of the emails to be answered.  

Consider the emails that were answered side by side with the emails that were not. A comparative analysis would reveal key phases of the email journey where more information may do the trick. Make emails more engaging with promises of rewards and offers that no one should afford to miss out on. 

Purchase: Facilitating the buying process through timely emails

If the above steps are followed up correctly, the subsequent mails lead to success. Interested customers, satisfied with what you are offering as an addition of value to their lives, make the deal. Guiding the customer journey from interest to purchase is an exciting process, and requires the assistance of an email marketing partner. Sending timely emails just when the customer is ready to convert is the secret to success.    

Onboarding and Education: Nurturing new customers with useful information

At this stage, new customers are interested in continuing the journey. They want to know more about the brand and the overall experience. You complement the onboarding process by educating your customers on how your offers are different. Make them aware of the life-changing impact of your products and services by providing useful information. This is also the time to provide the details of ongoing offers so that people feel inclined to try out your brand experience. 

Upsells and Cross-sells: Generating additional revenue through targeted offers

Soon enough, new offers start to take shape with upselling. Promote your products with graphics and information on their usability. Cross-selling is also an effective way to introduce new and related products to customers. You can present limited-time offers to encourage your customers to be more proactive with your brand. 

Retention and Loyalty: Encouraging repeat businesses with rewards and recognition

Appreciate your customer’s effort to stay in touch with your brand with loyalty programs. Remember that people want to feel recognized for what they are doing for your brand. To make the recognition experience rewarding, you can pitch in exclusive offers that are available only to a select group of customers. Make it a personalized experience of value that simply cannot be missed. 

Advocacy: Transforming satisfied customers into brand advocates

Explain the benefits of advocating your brand with the help of referral programs. Your target should be to make the product experience inclusive and enriching at every stage of the customer journey. You can also send offers on influence marketing, which is brand advocacy at its best. The better you are at reaching out with your products and offerings, the more encouraged people feel to be a part of the branding experience. 

Re-engagement: Strategies for reactivating inactive subscribers

Email marketing campaigns also present great opportunities to reach out to inactive customers. You will have to apply the same template of success that worked with active customers, but at the same time focus on personalization.

The customer journey map will help you understand why people are unable to feel an emotional connection with the brand. Once this connection is understood and appreciated, you can re-engage the inactive segment to heightened interest. 

The Process of Email Customer Journey Mapping

Process of Email Customer Journey Mapping

Following these steps in email customer journey mapping can create more relevant and effective email campaigns that engage and convert your audience.

Collecting and analyzing customer data for accurate journey maps:

It is important to collect and analyze customer data to create effective email customer journey maps. 

This includes demographics, preferences, purchase history, and engagement patterns. By understanding your customers better, you can make more accurate and relevant journey maps.

Identifying critical touchpoints and stages in the customer lifecycle:

Once you have collected customer data, you can identify the critical touchpoints and stages in the customer lifecycle. 

These touchpoints are moments when customers interact with your brand, such as signing up for emails, purchasing, or providing feedback. Understanding these stages helps you map the customer journey and determine where email communication is most effective.

Segmenting email lists for personalized communication:

Segmenting your email lists is essential for personalized communication. By dividing your subscribers into groups based on their characteristics or behaviors, you can send targeted emails that resonate with each segment. 

For example, you can segment based on demographic information, purchase history, or engagement levels. This ensures that your emails are relevant and increases the chances of engagement.

Creating content tailored to each stage of the customer journey:

Once you have identified the stages in the customer journey, you can create content tailored to each stage. 

For example, during the brand awareness stage, you can send introductory emails with information about your brand. You can send emails with product recommendations or discounts in the purchase stage. 

By aligning your content with each stage, you can guide customers through the journey and provide value at each step.

Implementing automation for efficient execution and timing of emails:

Automation is a powerful tool for executing email marketing campaigns efficiently and at the right time. 

Email marketing automation software allows you to set up workflows that trigger emails based on specific customer actions or time intervals. 

This ensures that your emails are sent at the most opportune moments, such as a welcome email immediately after a customer signs up or a follow-up email after a purchase.

Monitoring and optimizing the customer journey:

The customer journey is complex, and it is important to continuously monitor and optimize your email marketing efforts. Analyze the performance of your emails and track open rates, click-through rates, and conversions. 

Use this data to make improvements and refine your email customer journey maps. Regularly test different content, subject lines, and calls to action to find the best for your audience.

Best Practices for Email Journey Mapping

The best practices for email journey mapping are:

Avoiding common pitfalls in email customer journey mapping:

When mapping out the email customer journey, it's important to avoid common pitfalls that can hinder the effectiveness of your campaigns. Some common pitfalls to avoid include:

  • Making assumptions: Relying on assumptions about your customer's preferences and behaviors can lead to inaccurate journey maps. Instead, gather data and research to gain real insights into your audience.
  • Neglecting customer feedback: Customer feedback is invaluable for understanding their needs and expectations. Incorporate feedback channels to gather insights and improve your email campaigns.
  • Overcomplicating the journey: Keep the customer journey simple and easy to understand. Avoid including unnecessary steps or complexity that may confuse or overwhelm your audience.

Utilizing tools and software for creating detailed journey maps:

To create detailed email journey maps, utilize tools and software to streamline the process. Some helpful tools include:

  • Customer relationship management (CRM) software enables you to collect and organize customer data, track interactions, and segment your email lists effectively.
  • Email marketing automation platforms allow you to automate email campaigns, set triggers based on customer actions, and personalize emails at scale.
  • Analytics tools: Use analytics tools to monitor the performance of your email campaigns, track metrics like open rates and click-through rates, and gain insights into customer behavior.

By leveraging these tools, you can create comprehensive journey maps that align with your customers' needs and preferences.

Maintaining a customer-centric approach throughout the mapping process:

Throughout the journey mapping process, it's crucial to maintain a customer-centric approach. This means keeping your customers' needs and desires at the forefront. Here's how to do it:

  • Empathy and understanding: Put yourself in your customers' shoes and consider their motivations, pain points, and goals. This will help you craft emails that resonate with them.
  • Personalization: Tailor your emails to individual customers or segmented groups to make them feel valued and understood. Use personalized content, product recommendations, and offers to create a personalized experience.
  • Testing and optimization: Continuously test different elements of your emails, such as subject lines, content, and calls to action. Optimize based on customer feedback and data to improve engagement and conversions.

By keeping your customers at the center of your email journey mapping process, you can create highly relevant and engaging email campaigns that drive results.

Remember, these best practices can help you create effective email journey maps and deliver personalized customer experiences. Regularly review and update your journey maps as customer preferences and behaviors evolve, ensuring your email marketing remains relevant and impactful.

Measuring Success and Refining the Journey

Let us look at how:

Key metrics for evaluating the performance of email marketing campaigns:

To measure the success of your email marketing campaigns and refine the customer journey, it's important to track key metrics. Here are some important metrics to consider:

  • Open Rate is the percentage of recipients who open your emails. A higher open rate indicates that your subject lines and sender names are compelling.
  • Click-through Rate (CTR): The percentage of recipients clicking links within your emails. A higher CTR suggests that your content and calls to action are engaging.
  • Conversion Rate: The percentage of recipients who complete a desired action, such as purchasing or filling out a form. A higher conversion rate indicates that your emails are effectively driving desired outcomes.
  • Bounce Rate: The percentage of emails that are undeliverable. A high bounce rate may indicate issues with your email list quality or email deliverability.
  • Unsubscribe Rate: The percentage of recipients who opt out of receiving future emails. A high unsubscribe rate may indicate your emails need to meet their expectations.

By regularly monitoring these metrics, you can evaluate your email campaigns' performance and identify areas for improvement.

Using customer feedback to refine and improve the journey:

Customer feedback is valuable for refining and improving the email customer journey. Here's how you can leverage customer feedback:

  • Surveys and Feedback Forms: Include surveys or feedback forms in your emails to gather insights directly from your customers. Ask about their email preferences, content interests, and overall satisfaction.
  • Social Listening: Monitor social media platforms and online reviews to understand what customers say about your emails. Pay attention to their comments, suggestions, and complaints to identify areas for improvement.
  • Customer Support Interactions: Engage with your customer support team to gather customer feedback with questions or concerns. These interactions can provide valuable insights into their experiences with your emails.

You can better understand their needs and preferences by actively seeking and listening to customer feedback. Use this feedback to refine your email journey maps and create more relevant and impactful campaigns.

Continuous optimization of email content and timing based on performance data:

Optimize your content and timing based on performance data to continuously improve your email marketing campaigns. Here's how:

  • A/B Testing: Test different variations of your emails to see which perform better. Experiment with different subject lines, email designs, calls to action, and content to optimize engagement and conversions.
  • Timing and Frequency: Analyze open and click-through rates data to determine the best times and frequencies to send your emails. Consider factors like time zones, customer preferences, and industry benchmarks.
  • Content Relevance: Review engagement metrics to understand which types of content resonate most with your audience. Adjust your content strategy to focus on what interests and engages your customers the most.

You can continually refine the customer journey and drive better results using data-driven insights to optimize your email content and timing.

Remember, measuring success and refining the journey is an ongoing process. Regularly review your key metrics, gather customer feedback, and optimize your email campaigns to ensure continuous improvement and deliver a better experience for your subscribers.

Examples of Effective Email Marketing Journeys

Some of the examples of effective email marketing journeys:

Case studies illustrating successful customer journey mapping in email marketing

  • Warby Parker: The eyewear company maps out five stages: Discovery, Consideration, Purchase, Loyalty, and Advocacy. Their automated emails nurture customers through each stage with personalized content, which has helped increase repeat purchases by 30%.
  • Allbirds: The shoe brand segments subscribers into New, Returning, and Loyal customers. They send tailored messages to drive engagement, first purchases and reorders at each stage. Their targeted approach boosted email open rates by 25%.

Specific strategies and campaigns that have led to increased engagement and conversions

  • Dollar Shave Club: Their onboarding series introduces new subscribers to products through a "box arrival" simulation email. This helped boost first-order conversions by 20%.
  • Casper: They implemented re-engagement campaigns for dormant subscribers with targeted discounts, which brought back 35% of inactive customers who made repeat purchases.
  • Anthropic: The AI safety startup runs regular promotional campaigns for past customers with exclusive discounts. Their retention rate is 95%, thanks to these relationship-building strategies.

By mapping customer journeys, these companies understand each stage's unique motivators. Their targeted email campaigns smoothly guide recipients through buying while maintaining long-term loyalty. Journey mapping is key to effective email marketing.


Email marketing plays a significant role in how businesses engage with their customers. As this article highlighted, mapping customer journeys helps marketers better understand each stage in the buyer's experience. This knowledge enables companies to craft highly targeted and relevant email campaigns at every touchpoint.

By segmenting subscribers and sending customized messages, brands can smoothly guide recipients through each phase of the purchase funnel. This strategic approach keeps customers engaged over the long run. Journey mapping with email also provides valuable insights into what motivates different types of buyers.

All companies should adopt a customer-focused outlook for their marketing communications to stay competitive. The Omind platform can help with this goal. Their AI-powered tools for mapping journeys, analyzing insights, and automating campaigns help ensure each contact is a valuable experience that moves the relationship forward. This kind of strategic email marketing builds stronger, longer-lasting customer relationships.

Customer Experience

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Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

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