Apple’s iOS 15 Mail Privacy Protection marks a new era for email marketing professionals. It’s a continuation of Apple’s efforts to offer iPhone owners more control over their privacy and data.

It’s also a time to turn a new leaf towards customer-centric, hyper-personalized email marketing

What’s the impact on email marketing?

iOS 15 security feature is good news for users who, after the update, will be able to:

  • Turn off open tracking
  • Block their IP address
  • Hide their email address

For marketers, however, it’s a different story. The Mail Privacy Protection will prevent senders from using hidden pixels that gather valuable post-send data. Senders won’t be able to track KPIs like open rates, open times, or location, that are the main performance pillars of email marketing.

Email marketing is not a thing in the past

Fear not marketers! iOS 15 Mail Privacy Protection may sound like the end of email marketing, but every cloud has a silver lining. Yes, updates like this will eliminate marketers whose only goal is to send out mass emails to mass lists. But for others it’s an opportunity to shift focus on creating personalized customer experiences.

How to think beyond open rates and continue running effective email campaigns? Let’s take a look at a few email marketing best practices.

Create content that resonates with your audience

You may be sick of hearing it by now, but personalization is kind of a big thing. It spans across every marketing channel, including email marketing. Generic emails don’t cut it anymore. Think of your audience personas and their needs to create meaningful, useful content that resonates. Some may be driven by promotions and coupons, whereas others need a softer approach through brand stories or how-to guides. 

Whatever your approach is, always ask yourself; “is this email worth sending?” before hitting the send button.

82% of consumers feel more positive about a brand after reading customized content. 

Understand who’s who

List segmentation is the only way to create customized experiences. Segment customer data based on demographics, interests, or previous activity with your brand. Behavioral data is always a good place to start. Hyper focus on subscribers that engage with your emails. Narrow the list to contacts who have purchased your products, or visited your website. 

Consider what information you want to collect during a purchase or a newsletter sign up. Could you add a question or two about their interests? The more segments you can add, the better.

Keep your email marketing list tidy

The number one rule in email marketing is to maintain list hygiene. Regularly remove “dead” email addresses from your mailing list. These are contacts who haven’t opened emails, or clicked content for a period of time. Emailing to unengaged contacts brings down email performance, and damages your sender reputation. Once a month, send a “win-back” email to unengaged subscribers to try to engage them again. 

Email marketing and SMS marketing together make a powerful strategy

Email + SMS = the power couple

Like Batman and Robin, email and SMS can do wonders together. SMS is most effective for new product launches and special offers for VIP customers (= SMS subscribers). It can also be used to promote your email channel. Consider sending a special offer via SMS, and ask the recipient to check their email for a promo code.  POW!

Test, test, test!

It may sound obvious, but testing is the best way to find out what works. Dedicate time for A/B testing to find creative elements that work best for your audience. Test subject lines, test long vs. short messages, text-based vs. image-driven messages, sassy vs. serious copy. Then, double down on them.


Whether you like it or not, it’s time for us marketers to go back to our roots. This means shifting our focus from data to customers’ needs and wants. Today’s customers want privacy and customization from brands that they trust. It’s that simple.

Ready to enter the new era of email marketing? Contact Mason’s email marketing specialists to book a consultation.

This article was written with expert advice from Deatrice Lockhart, Mason’s Integrated Communications Manager.

Adrian Padron

Author Adrian Padron

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