What Are Sponsored Emails And How They Can Benefit Your Business

What Are Sponsored Emails And How They Can Benefit Your Business
21 May, 2024 • ... • 23 views
Maria Bidogaeva
by Maria Bidogaeva

Looking for a new way to enhance your brand’s email marketing campaigns? Then you can give sponsored emails a try. This email marketing strategy has various benefits for both advertiser and publisher. In this article, you’ll learn what email sponsorship is and how to use it, understand the benefits of sponsored emails, and discover some of the best sponsored email examples.

What is email sponsorship?

Email sponsorship is an email marketing practice of paying a business to gain access to their subscriber list. In this paradigm, the owner of the business is called a publisher, and the brand that is paying them is called a sponsor or an advertiser.  

Typically, the publisher is responsible for the content and the subject line of such emails, while the email is structured to promote the advertiser. But, unlike dedicated emails that contain the advertiser’s content only, sponsored ones are not entirely focused on the advertiser. Rather, the publisher structures the email so that the advertiser could complement it with their content. To inform the audience that the email campaign is sponsored, publishers use messages such as “in partnership with…”, “sponsored by…”, “brought to you by”, and the like. Also, a sponsored email campaign can be sent as a part of a bulk email campaign to reach a broader audience.

The practice of email sponsorship has both pros and cons. The former includes the opportunity to reach out to the target audience and to strengthen relationships with your customers, and the latter — the lack of creativity. 

In the next section, we’ve gathered some of the best sponsored email examples from various brands to help you get an idea of what they look like.

What are the benefits of sponsored email marketing?

As mentioned earlier, email sponsorship may have some cons. But in general, sponsored emails provide plenty of marketing benefits to the brands using them. Let’s take a closer look at how your company can profit from working with publishers.

  • Using sponsored emails, you can reach your target audience. Since the publishers already have a list of relevant subscribers, you can promote your company to an engaged audience.
  • Email sponsorship may help you raise brand awareness. By presenting your product or service to the target audience, you can establish direct communication with potential customers and increase your brand’s visibility.
  • Sponsored email marketing campaigns increase click-through rates. Unlike cold email campaigns, sponsored emails reach the audience who has already given consent to receive the publisher’s newsletters, so they can motivate user engagement and raise CTR.

Email sponsorship also provides several advantages to the publishers. Some of them are the following:

  • Sponsored emails can bring more revenue. If publishers choose to monetize their emails, they can gain revenue from each email campaign.
  • Email sponsorships provide partnership opportunities. By collaborating with different brands, publishers can get valuable connections within the industry, leading to more marketing growth opportunities. 

Now, let’s take a look at some real-life examples.

Sponsored emails examples


For this email, Tripadvisor collaborated with American Airlines, and the brands came up with an engaging offer relevant to Tripadvisor’s subscribers. The email is concise and has a clear message, which helps the readers focus on the value proposition.

An email from Tripadvisor sponsored by American Airlines. The email features an image of a man snorkeling.
Source: Really Good Emails


Drizly was an online alcohol retailer and delivery service. In this Father’s Day email, the brand promoted some of the products from its extensive catalog. This was a good promotion tactic for the products displayed since the potential customers could order them right away.

An email by Drizly promoting various drinks
Source: Really Good Emails

The Vancouver Business Journal

Another example is The Vancouver Business Journal. The publisher offers an email sponsorship opportunity on their website, listing the benefits potential advertisers can get. 

In the sample email below, the publisher is cooperating with YWCA Clark County to promote their virtual challenge and event. The email features a large image and a call to action button that makes it appealing and attention-grabbing.

An email from The Vancouver Business Journal featuring an image of laughing people
Source: The Vancouver Business Journal

How to use sponsored emails

If you’ve decided to use sponsored emails for your brand’s email marketing campaign, here are some best practices for you to follow. .

Define your audience

The first step, as usual, is to identify your target audience. To do so, think of your service or product first. What value does it have? Identify the problem it solves and the benefits it provides. You should also analyze the existing customers and their characteristics. 

Then, compile a list of potential publishers, analyze their audiences in the same manner, and choose the ones who have similar audiences. This step will help you find a relevant sponsor for your email marketing campaign.

Come up with catchy email ideas

Typically, the sponsored emails’ content is the publisher’s responsibility.  And that is only natural since they know best how to handle communications with their audience. However, some publishers might ask you to offer your ideas. In case they do, this is what you will need to think of: 

  1. Information about your product or service. Consider the value of your offerings to the publisher’s audience and pinpoint some important features to highlight in the email.  
  2. Suggest illustrations. Offer a selection of visual elements related to your brand to make the email more appealing to the readers. Although the publisher will not necessarily use your images in the email, they might still come in handy as references. 
  3. Offer your messaging ideas. Integrating the advertiser’s information in sponsored emails might sometimes be tricky. Coming up with suggestions on how to best handle the task will help the publisher put the campaign together faster. 

Review, analyze, and repeat

After you are done with your sponsored email marketing campaign, take some time to review and analyze the results.  To do that, you might need to ask the publisher for the sponsored email campaign statistics. After identifying your strengths and weaknesses of the campaign, you can enhance your next campaign and achieve even better results with your next sponsored emails. 

Final thoughts

Sponsored emails can be a good opportunity to promote your brand to the relevant audience, increase brand awareness and engagement level, and gain other benefits. We hope this article could help you learn more about this type of email marketing. Good luck with your sponsored email campaigns!

Article by
Maria Bidogaeva
A literature and economics degree holder with a background in writing newspaper articles and educational blog posts. I first encountered digital marketing when I was launching my online language learning project. I believe digital marketing can be challenging and fun at the same time, so I hope to help others make the best of their experience with it. My hobbies include online education, learning foreign languages, and American literature.
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