Skip to Content

What’s up with Generative AI and Email Marketing?

We asked marketers in the Trailblazer Community for their predictions on generative AI in email marketing, how they plan to use it, and more.

It’s not a stretch to say generative AI in email marketing is a hot-button topic. You’ve probably heard some version of the following about how the tool is transforming the field:

“Welcome to the future of email marketing.” 

“Where creativity meets innovation and personalization takes center stage.” 

“Say hello to generative AI, the game-changing technology redefining how brands connect with their audiences through email campaigns.”

But what do marketers want to know about generative AI and email marketing? We asked the best and coolest experts we know: our Marketing Trailblazer Community. They told us how they plan to use generative AI for email marketing and the impact they believe the technology will have on efficiency and effectiveness, job security, and more.

Now let’s turn it over to our Trailblazers!

How will generative AI impact email marketing in the next 2-5 years?

“Increased productivity and saving time are the two major values of generative AI. In the next two to five years, generative AI will help create content quickly — in the form of text, video, and images. It can also create multiple variations of this content and speed up A/B testing to target different customer groups. Email marketing is most impactful when we can deliver 1-on-1 personalized messages.” Buyan Thyagarajan, Principal, Eigen X

“In the next two to five years, the tool will help businesses make better decisions for their email marketing campaigns. I believe most of the campaign process, from lead generation to final customer message, will be led by generative AI.” Lumbet Bitini, Senior Marketing Cloud Consultant, Merkle DACH

“I think generative AI is already having an impact on the ability to create content for A/B testing. In the next 2-5 years, I expect to see it go beyond generating first-draft copy and become a strategic tool for high-level campaign planning based on accumulated performance and industry data. But, there will always be a need for human creativity to cut through the noise.” Ed Gray, Delivery Team Manager & Marketing Practice Lead, Arkus, Inc.

“People who adapt and adopt generative AI can create content on many more topics. Even if the tool isn’t being used verbatim, the current versions do a good job. It can increase personalization at scale, improve engagement, reduce costs, and improve ROI. However, there could be consequences too if we aren’t careful. The fundamentals of email marketing may be less understood as we start to skip the sweat, tears, and hard learnings.” Mike Creuzer, Pardot Partnerships & API Integrations Lead, Sercante

Are you already using generative AI? If so, how? Can you give us some examples?

“My A/B testing improved 10x using generative AI in my email marketing. Instead of testing only subject lines, I can also test user behavior, allowing me to be more strategic with every send. Along with content, I also use AI in the design process. It helps me select images and colors that best resonate with my target audience. Finally, AI also optimizes my send time, ensuring these audiences receive my messages at the time they are most likely to open.” Taylor Baker, Marketing Consultant/Owner, Resilient Innovation

“I’ve used generative AI as an assistant, not as a copywriter. In practice, I use it to outline the message I want to write — then I add my personal touch to the content. It’s a great way to get a “second opinion” and ensure all key angles are covered. For example, I recently wrote an article about building a MarTech stack. I asked ChatGPT to give me a list of subcategories and their definitions. This gave me a good wireframe to write my content.” Timo Kovala, Managing Marketing Architect, Capgemini Finland

“Right now, we’re testing it in the background as it is too early to adopt it into our daily processes officially. We are actively building up use cases, examples, and studies on it so we can fully embrace it in the future.” Greg Gifford, Director, DM Engineering, Merkle

“Our team tested a few tools.” We used it to write subject lines for email nurture paths. The results were okay, but I’m sure they’ve improved since then. I will say it was helpful to have those suggestions to lean on. We have also done some test pilots with social media using some tone options.” Shonica Mitchell, Global Marketing Automation & Community Manager, BrightDrop

How can this technology improve your job as an email marketer?

“Generative AI could help me move faster, create more personalization, and push out more content. Today, this process is lengthy and requires multiple layers of approval. I could see a decrease in our turnaround time.” Shonica Mitchell, Global Marketing Automation & Community Manager, BrightDrop

“Using detailed prompts generated by AI that include the appropriate data about the lead or customer I am trying to target can positively impact my KPIs  — including higher open rates, improved click-through rates, and increased conversion rates. Email marketers can create more engaging and impactful campaigns, ultimately driving better results, fostering stronger relationships, and sharing personal impact with stakeholders.” Sadaf Sabet, Marketing Automation Specialist, Gallagher

“I see this as an opportunity to drive marketers toward more empathetic and thoughtful content. In this sense, generative AI can help us be more efficient and drive us to become better at what we do.” Timo Kovala, Lead Marketing Consultant, Twoday Biit

What needs to happen for generative AI to achieve its full potential in email marketing? What still needs to improve?

“The biggest gap in AI is lack of training and trust in verifying content.” We need human interventions to verify content, governance, and regulation to prevent misuse. This will make AI more trustworthy.” Buyan Thyagarajan, Principal, Eigen X

“There is a disconnect in generative AI adoption. Right now, I feel there is either fanatical love or irrational fear toward AI in the workplace. AI is replacing mindsets, not jobs — but training still needs to improve. It feels as if you use AI in your job, you are “cheating.” Instead, education on how it enhances and increases your role’s impact toward company growth should be showcased.” Taylor Baker, Marketing Consultant/Owner, Resilient Innovation

“Accuracy and trust are imperative for email marketing to realize its full potential. Marketers need to be able to rely on AI’s accuracy of data, information, and content and trust that there is no bias in the data or content being served up by the tool.” Shonica Mitchell, Global Marketing Automation & Community Manager, BrightDrop

Salesforce’s viewpoint on the future of email marketing

We’re very excited about the potential for generative AI to transform marketing, in particular email marketing. Think of the tool as your new best friend — saving you time and money, supporting you in your role, and putting your big-picture goals in focus.

Looking to take the manual out of your next campaign and gain instant data analysis for high-level planning? Say hello to AI as your digital assistant. Want to find a reliable way to test your email send times and content selection — including catchy subject lines, images, and colors — to improve engagement and conversion rates? AI takes the guesswork out. Trying to connect with your customers and deliver a unique experience that makes them feel understood? Yep, you guessed it. AI delivers personalization at scale based on customer behavior and preferences. Your new best friend has you covered.

But, we know friendship takes time, and there are still a lot of questions about AI. Whether it’s ensuring ethical action, verifying content, training with the tool, or trusting the accuracy of data, we’re committed to learning as much as we can and helping others navigate as the technology evolves and becomes mainstream. And of course, our Trailblazer Community will be there every step of the way.

Put generative AI into practice

Ready to see what AI can do for your marketing? Build lasting customer relationships, engage efficiently, and grow revenue — we can help.

Guilda Hilaire

Guilda Hilaire is a Director of Product Marketing, Marketing Cloud, and proud Trailblazer advocate at Salesforce.

More by Guilda

Want Trailblazer tips and thought leadership straight to your inbox?