Article

Top 10 Signs You’re an Email Geek

Tony Zupancic

You might think calling someone a geek is an insult. However, in the email world, it means you’re a member of a widespread yet close-knit group of developers, marketers, and strategists––all of whom believe in the power of email.

There’s one thing you’ll learn quickly as a member of the email community: We help each other out. We reach out across company and competitor lines to help our fellow emailers solve coding issues, handle deliverability problems, and figure out marketing strategies.

This collaborative environment also marks the way everyone at Trendline works together to solve our clients’ email marketing problems. Most of us come to email from other disciplines. We had to learn email skills on our own through trial and error or online learning.

That’s probably why helping each other is a core characteristic of the email community and why we don’t hesitate to reach across department lines to work on client solutions.

How #emailgeeks and Trendline made me an email geek

I more or less fell into email design as an offshoot of my job as a graphic designer for a local university. I took some HTML and web design classes on the side, but then I found a Slack workspace called “emailgeeks,” and everything changed.

I was able to ask really basic questions, and people jumped to answer them without making me feel like an idiot for asking.

I owe my Trendline career to the emailgeeks Slack community because it was there where I got to know Chester Bullock, who was Trendline’s Vice President of Solutions Consulting at the time and is currently employed as the Director of Marketing Technology for RentPath. He brought me into the company, where I found a great fit with my drive to keep learning and to push the limits to expand on what we can do for our clients.

Are you an email geek?

That’s what you’re thinking, right? I can help you answer that! You don’t have to be a designer or a developer or a copywriter to qualify. If email is your life, whether you’re on the creative side or an email strategist or marketer, take my 10-step test to measure your own level of email geekiness.

It’s not a certification level in Salesforce Marketing Cloud–yet–but it’s a badge of honor to wear proudly.

Top 10 key identifiers of email geekiness

See how many you match with, and then check your score at the end to measure your email geek potential!

1.  You often read articles about updates to the major inbox providers (Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo!, etc.) to see what they are changing.

Bonus points: You know which articles to ignore based on release dates and more current updates.

2. You spend an inordinate amount of time in Gmail’s Promotions tab looking at emails you will never open and click on because you want to see what other brands are doing and which ones end up in Promotions instead of the Primary, Social, or Updates tabs.

Bonus points: You save the really good ones in a special folder.
Double bonus points: You keep an email-fails folder, too.

3. You think about replying to a brand’s email to sympathetically point out an issue or error in it, and you want to give them a hug.

Bonus points: You did reply to that email, sharing your information politely and professionally as befitting a true email geek.

4. You get annoyed when you opt out of an email program, and the brand tells you it could take up to 10 days to process your unsubscribe. Email geeks know it almost always happens instantly.

5. You can’t stop going over your pre-send checklist to make sure everything is perfect before you send an email campaign, even after the client approves it, and you still break out in a cold sweat when it’s time to hit “schedule” or “send.”

6. You dream about email: coding emails, designing emails, automating emails, troubleshooting emails, etc.

7. You own email-themed clothing and wear it often.

email geeks

8. You have friends or family members who say, “So you’re the reason I get all that spam!” when they find out you work in email.

Bonus points: You engage and try to dispel this mindset.
Double bonus points: You change their minds!

9. You get upset when you receive or have to build an email with text embedded directly in an image.

Bonus points: You explain why this is a bad idea and why live text would work better.
Double bonus points: You convince them to use live text!

10. You talk shop with other IT/developer friends and you surprise them because you can hold your own when talking about HTML/CSS/SQL/ServerSide JavaScript/AMPScript and explaining how many hats you wear every day.

Scoring key:

Zero: You must be new here. Don’t worry; we were newbies once, too. Welcome!

1-9: Yep, you’re an email geek. Are you on emailgeeks yet? Say “hi” when you get there. I’m @TonyZups. You can find me in #random, #misc-food, or one of the SFMC channels!

10: You must work at Trendline!

Thanks to my email friends who gave me suggestions for this list. It’s yet another way we like to help each other out.

Wrapping up

I owe a huge debt to the emailgeeks community who helped me get to where I am in such a short time. I’m grateful that I have the knowledge and experience now to pay it forward and help new members who have the same questions and problems I had in the beginning.

And I’m grateful for the help I got from both Slack’s emailgeeks and the pros here at Trendline for pushing me to hone my skills and put them to work for our Trendline clients. Not a Trendline client yet? Reach out and let us show you how our collaborative approach can help you solve your biggest digital marketing challenges.

About the Author(s)

Tony Zupancic

Graphic Designer/Photographer turned 4x certified SFMC Developer and 2020 Marketing Champion. Very active within the email community, on the EmailGeeks slack group, and Twitter. Organizer and SME on SFMC Lookup(Answers) webinars and author of various SFMC related articles. https://twitter.com/TonyZupancic

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