Let Me Explain The Email Marketing Sandwich

Andrew Donovan
3 min readApr 25, 2022

I use a Cubano sandwich as an analogy to explain something important about using email to grow your business

What does a Cubano sandwich have in common with email marketing?


But it makes for a great analogy when I’m trying to explain what an “email marketing sandwich” is.

Here’s the gist of it.

Making the sandwich

The base layer bun

Every sandwich has the base layer bun on which everything else is piled. For the sake of this amazing analogy, I need you to imagine the base layer bun is your email list sign up form or pop-up.

Your sign up for or pop-up should be converting between 5–10% of all visitors into subscribers.

If you’re batting the league average, your conversion rate should be no less than 3.09%. If you’re in the top 10% of hitters in the league, your form should be converting at 9.3% or higher.

If you have no idea what your form conversion rate is, you need to find out. You can’t optimise content you don’t know needs to be optimised, so make sure you don’t overlook this step.

The meat

A Cubano sandwich has roasted pork, glazed ham, and salami along with Swiss cheese, thinly sliced pickles, and mustard. This is what makes the Cubano a perfect sandwich.

In this analogy, your meat is the emails you send to your list. Without quality ingredients, the buns provide zero value.

Quality ingredients in this context include:

I’m not going to go too much more into the this part of the sandwich because I write extensively about these topics every week. If you’re using email marketing, you should know to be sending regular content as well as setting up all your necessary automations.

The top layer bun

Andrew Donovan

I’m the lead email marketing specialist for a boutique marketing agency in Ontario, Canada.