How to create and send an email campaign

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You will learn

Learn about the basics of email campaigns, including what they are and how to send them in Klaviyo.

An email campaign is a one-time send to a pre-established target group of contacts — think regular newsletters, sale announcements, or promotional sends. An individual campaign can be created and sent immediately, or a campaign can be prepared and then scheduled to send at a later time.

Before you begin

Before you start sending, do the following things:

Campaigns vs. flows

In Klaviyo lingo, it is important to distinguish between flows and campaigns.



Send to a target list that you build in advance

Send one or more automated messages, curated based on certain triggers and filters

Manually created and scheduled

Triggered every time a certain behavior occurs

Example: monthly emails for a newsletter list, or a flash sale announcement sent to existing customers via text

Example: automated welcome email or SMS that sends to new subscribers immediately after they sign up 

Build a new email campaign

Klaviyo’s campaign wizard guides you through the steps for creating your campaign.

  1. Navigate to the Campaigns tab
  2. Click Create Campaign
  3. Choose Email

The wizard takes you through the following three screens:

  • Recipients
  • Content
  • Review

Choose the campaign name and recipients

The first screen of the wizard covers the basic settings of your campaign, who you send to, and details about how you send.

  1. Name your campaign and add a tag if you would like.
    The Campaign Information section within step 1 of the Klaviyo Campaign Wizard, where you name the campaign and add tags
  2. Choose an existing list or segment to target. For example, you may want to send a campaign to your main list except for those who are subscribed to SMS, or you may want to send a campaign to a list with all customers that have two or more purchases.
    View of the Recipients section in step 1 of the Klaviyo Campaign Wizard, where you choose which lists and segments to send to and not send to
  3. If you want to send to multiple lists/segments, select which lists/segments you would like to include or exclude. You can send a single campaign to a maximum of 15 segments/lists. Learn more about Klaviyo's multi-list sending feature.
  4. Make note of the expected recipient count — this estimate removes duplicate profiles, excluded profiles, and suppressions.The estimated recipients for a Klaviyo campaign
  5. Enable or disable smart sending.
    The Recipients screen in step 1 of the Klaviyo Campaign Wizard with the Skip recently emailed profiles we highlight option
  6. Enable or disable Google Analytics tracking.
    The Tracking section in step 1 of the Klaviyo Campaign Wizard where you can include or customize the tracking parameters

Create the email content

The second screen in the wizard is where you build your email template. Create a new template or choose a template from the template library.

The first step of the campaign wizard

  1. Double-check the subject line, sender name, and sender email address; you can add a different reply-to email address if you would like responses to go to a different inbox (for example, if you want your Klaviyo email to come from a personal email but responses to go to a support inbox).
  2. Select how you would like to create campaign content:
    • Drag and Drop
      Our email editor automatically optimizes your email for mobile and makes it easy to create complex email layouts.
    • Text Only
      If you'd like to send a text-only email, this is the option you're looking for. This is a good choice for sending an email that looks like it came directly from you rather than your organization.
    • HTML
      If you have your own HTML email template you're importing, or you want to code an HTML template from scratch, this is the option to choose.
  3. Use the drag-and-drop editor to make changes to your design and click Save Content.

Schedule and send your campaign

The third and final screen of the wizard allows you to review, schedule, and send your campaign. At this step in the wizard, you can choose to add a variation to your email to A/B test your campaign.

  1. Click Review & Send Campaign
    A campaign with a template selected
  2. Review all sections and click Schedule or Send
    The review screen in the Klaviyo Campaign Wizard
  3. Schedule or send your campaign
    A modal for choosing the send time for a Klaviyo campaign

Select when you would like to send your campaign and it will be queued and sent within a few minutes after the time you set. You can either send immediately or send at a later date and time.

When you schedule a campaign email, Klaviyo begins to add in the recipients, determining who to include based on any excluded lists, Smart Sending, etc. For campaigns targeting hundreds or thousands of recipients, this process can take several minutes during high-volume sending periods. This is done at the time of scheduling so that your campaigns are ready to send at your desired send time. If you need to schedule your campaign at a different time and do not wish to wait to reschedule, you can always cancel and clone your campaign to change the sending time. 

Sending options

You can also choose to enable Smart Send Time, which uses data to determine the best time to message your subscribe, or pick from the following options: 

  • Determine recipients at send time
    This option will send your campaign to those who are in your target list or segment right before the scheduled campaign sends
  • Deliver messages according to recipient's local time
    This option will send your campaign to each recipient based on their timezone
  • Batch sending
    This option will split your email send into smaller batches and send over a length of time

To learn more about the options listed above, read Email Campaign Schedule and Send Options.

Example email campaigns

  • New or featured
    Highlight curated products that are new or in-season, or feature what's new with your company or organization.
  • Storytelling
    Your business or organization is one of many out there. Explaining what makes it unique, and featuring the people "behind the brand," can build brand loyalty and community by helping your subscribers feel more connected to what you do and who you are.
  • Highlight interesting content
    Provide a short lead into a recent blog post, or another piece of content you’ve created, and send subscribers a link to read more. Developing your company's voice as a relevant go-to source for new and interesting content in your industry is a great way to keep subscribers and customers coming back for more.
  • Promotions
    Announce a special promotion or sale your business is offering. Even better if it's exclusive to email subscribers — creating a sense of urgency and exclusivity drives action.

Additional resources

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