March 12, 2019

Email on Tap Episode 3, featuring Marisa Pisani, marketing manager, email and SMS at Sherwin-Williams.

In our latest edition of Email on Tap and the last of our eTail West editions, Anthony Chiulli, director of product marketing at 250ok, shoots the email-breeze with Marisa Pisani, marketing manager, email and SMS at Sherwin-Williams. This is another exciting opportunity for us, to see how email works and is viewed by marketers in practice, rather than just via the lens of our email intelligence platform.

In this episode, Anthony and Marisa talk trends, deliverability, and more, exploring how email fits within a marketer’s ecosystem and why it is still (and will continue to be) important.

On to the video!

(Keep scrolling for key timestamps and even a full transcript. Plus, find links to our podcast version!)

Total Run Time: 6 minutes
00:20 – Why automation and personalization in email marketing remains a top priority for brands
1:03 – Tips for a great welcome series for new customers
1:40 – Sources of inspiration and ideas for email content, SL, templates
2:20 – What email trends are most intriguing
3:14 – Where does deliverability fall on the priority list within Marisa’s digital marketing strategy
4:12 – What Women of Email has meant to Marisa personally

Listen and subscribe on your favorite platform:


Anthony Chiulli
0:01 Welcome everyone to another episode of Email on Tap. I’m your host Anthony Chiulli, and we are here at eTail West in beautiful Palm Springs, California. My guest today is Marisa Pisani, marketing manager, email and SMS, for Sherwin-Williams. Marisa thanks so much for being here.

Marisa Pisani
0:19 Yeah, absolutely. Thank you for having me.

0:21 So one of the things that is a constant theme still to this day is automation and personalization in email marketing. Why do you feel that’s a continued trend year over year for marketers?

0:33 Because it works. It’s just such a great way to use a channel that you have and target and talk to your customers very specifically. I think now they expect that you are able to do that. By using automation and personalization, you free up maybe your small team to be able to do some other things; analyze and strategize and test different things. You let the systems really do the work for you. So it’s a really great way to have that one-on-one communication and not have to spend so much time making that happen.

1:02 Speaking of automation, let’s talk welcome series and onboarding. What are your tips for a great welcome series or onboarding journey for new customers?

1:11 Yeah, absolutely. To me, the welcome series and onboarding is so important because that’s your first chance to explain to your customers or prospects what they’re going to get from you, whether it’s from you as a brand or from you in your email communications. You’re able to say, “Here’s why I’m here, here’s why it’s valuable, here’s why you should keep engaging with our emails going forward.” And it’s that time for them to get to know you. So, I think that’s really your key time to explain what you’re gonna do and help them understand who you are.

1:39 Let’s talk inspiration for a moment. So being a marketing manager on email, where do you go for inspiration on subject lines, templates, content for your email program?

1:49 I really go everywhere. So there’s some industry specific things that I really like, Litmus puts out a lot of great content. But I think it’s also something where I look at what everybody’s doing. I have several different email addresses that I monitor and gather different types of emails, so not just within my industry, but what are other brands doing that’s really awesome? What cool innovative things are they doing? I kind of try to look at those and see, how does that fit with our brand? How does that fit with what we’re trying to do? And make it work for us.

2:17 This year, we’re coming off of of predictions, right? Everyone makes predictions about big, hot trends in 2019, and some of those are machine learning and AI, and interactive content and dynamic dynamic content in inboxes. What are you most excited about, as far as trends? What are you paying most attention to?

2:37 How to use them altogether. I’m really wanting to figure out what’s the right place to use those different things and how do they all play against each other. So, you know, I’ve used AI. I’ve used machine learning. I’ve used dynamic content. I’ve used interactive email, and it’s finding out where does that make sense? So, not to have an interactive email just to have one but to have it interactive, you know, because it makes the experience better for our customer. So really, trying to figure out, not that we have to be involved in everything, but how do you really make what the options are available out there work for you. Email’s such a great, innovative, cool thing that you’re able to kind of play with a little bit of everything.

3:11 That’s a great answer. Deliverability: One of the most misunderstood and complex disciplines in marketing. It seems like every marketer’s run up against a deliverability problem at some point. Where does deliverability fall in the priority for you within your marketing strategy?

3:30 It’s very important. So what we realized is, if your emails aren’t being delivered to the inbox, what does it matter what’s in them, if nobody’s able to see them. So deliverability was this kind of weird, magic, underground thing that nobody understood. Being able to dive in and see where our emails going, why aren’t they going where we think they’re going, and how can we improve that. It became really important just to be able to figure out even just to see what was happening, and then interpreting what we’re able to do with that.

3:56 Great. Yeah, I would agree. It’s deliverability. A lot of times people joke it’s this black box. It’s a mystery ball. It’s part art, part science. So I think that’s very well said, how you responded. Let’s talk about Women of Email. You’re a proud member of Women of Email, and it has grown in just a few short years to over 3,000 members, 40 countries, and over six continents. What does that organization mean for you and done for you personally?

4:28 It’s such an amazing organization to me. It’s a place where I go. It’s a safe space. I can ask questions about something, I can post about job openings that I have open. I can really interact with a community of women who understand what I’m talking about, you know? Email’s something where it was not always something that you work in every day, certain terms that we use, certain acronyms, certain concerns that we have… There aren’t really those groups where you can go in and talk like you can with the Women of Email. I just love that it’s just this really collaborative environment of amazing smart women who talk about things that are happening, things we want to change, things we want to do better. Just to be able to share feedback, just to have that really interactive community is super helpful.

5:12 Marisa, thank you so much. This has been an awesome time, it’s a pleasure to meet you, and thanks everyone for tuning in. We’ll see you next time on another episode of Email on Tap.

Author: Nicky Copland

Nicky is the senior marketing manager at 250ok. Before joining the team, she spent the majority of her time crafting and implementing communications strategies for the association industry. She was never a brain surgeon, but she played one on the internet.

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