Skip to main content

Last week, Adestra held its first North American Email Summit and what a day it was.

Over 50 clients, partners and friends, gathered together in Santa Monica, LA’s Huntley Hotel, for a day of discussions, learnings and networking.

The Email Summit was designed to facilitate discussion amongst clients and partners. Email marketers are hungry and want to stay on the cutting edge of the channel, said Matt McGowan, President at Adestra. The only way to truly improve and grow your business, is by rolling up your sleeves and discussing with your peers what’s working and what isn’t and learning from each other, he added.

“Not only are billions of emails sent every day, but email is and has always been the killer application of the internet. We are finally starting to see it take center stage with respect to consumer behavior.  We really wanted to give our clients the opportunity to sit and have discussions. So they could get to know our team, our partners, and their peers and so that we at Adestra could truly get to understand them and the opportunities they have on our platform.  We wanted to get beyond the buzzwords and the acronyms, and really help our clients with their day-to-day,” McGowan commented.

Kicking off the day with the opening keynote was Simms Jenkins, CEO and Founder of BrightWave, an Adestra client. Jenkins spoke all about incremental innovation in the age of the customer. According to Jenkins, email marketing isn’t easy and there are many pieces to a successful campaign. Taking a bitesize approach to success and making enhancements in a smaller way, can enhance your broader email strategy and overall ROI.

Jenkins gave three areas that marketers should focus on in order to incrementally innovate including; data, creating a dynamic inbox experience, and the optimization of overall messaging. Watch the below video for more detail on those!


Included in the day, was a marketer panel moderated by McGowan and featuring Minto Group, LiveClicker, InboxArmy, as well as Red Pill Email. McGowan asked panelists a number of questions around the importance of creative, mobile, and whether or not email marketers should use agencies. He also questioned the use of data in recent Black Friday communications, noting that many emails he personally received from retailers didn’t seem personalized or targeted.

While each panelist had different business objectives and KPIs, a common view stood out in their responses: brands could be using email more efficiently and data should be at the center of it all.

“Data is the subscriber’s inbox body language and it should be tied to other relevant data, like browsing data, purchase data, downloads, and social data to give you a holistic view of the subscriber”, said Chris Donald, Managing Partner and President of Operations at InboxArmy.

“Subscriber intent, engagement and preferences can all be told through data.  The email marketer needs to define KPIs and other valuable data points that help them target better, deliver proper content, and when to deliver that content…. Start small and make incremental gains. Big data is only useful if it can be used to create smaller actionable data,” Donald said.

Other sessions of the day included presentations on email strategy and design, deliverability, and First-Person Marketing, each delivered by Adestra’s heads of business in that area. (More to come on those throughout the week, so watch out for the video interviews on each session.)

Guests at the event were also invited to participate in ‘Meet the Expert Roundtables’ where they were able to interact and discuss key email areas such as strategy, deliverability, and design, in an intimate group setting with Adestra’s business heads.

Like all the most productive and fun events in the industry, there are networking cocktails and Adestra’s was no exception!


End of an awesome day. Time to play! ?? #EmailSummit

A post shared by (@adestra) on

Adestra’s Email Summit LA, comes hot on the heels of its recent European Summit in London, UK.  While that event has been going annually for a number of years, its LA sister is the first of what is hoped to be many in the North American market.

“Behind every technology are people. And people are at the heart of everything we do here at Adestra. Whether clients, partners, or friends, providing an open forum for discussion and learnings to enable them to be as successful as possible is very important to us. And we’re excited to do even more of it in 2018,” McGowan concluded.