We spoke with Kate Barrett one of our Marketing Heroes. Kate is an IDM tutor and the founder of eFocus Marketing, providing specialist email marketing consultancy, management and training services to companies around the world.

Please introduce yourself

Hi, I’m Kate Barrett and I’m the founder of eFocus Marketing.

Kate BarrettI’ve been lucky enough to work in marketing and more specifically, email marketing, for over 13 years’ now for a variety of clients around the world, big and small; including Nissan, Marks & Spencer, Argos, Vision Direct, BT, TUI, Soletrader, Maybourne Hotel Group, PhotoBox, MyVoucherCodes, M&M Direct, QVC, Cox & Cox and Adidas, among many others.

My expertise and passion has helped these companies develop comprehensive strategies, as well as implement, manage and optimise those campaigns and solve complex email marketing issues including deliverability challenges. (I was once even referred to as the ‘Mother Teresa of email marketing!)

Being a member of the DMA Email Council, regularly speaking at events around the world, blogging, a contributor to Smart Insights and the email marketing trainer for the IDM means I’m always up to date with the latest email marketing news, trends and techniques to feed my passion for the industry.

I also wrote an email marketing book ‘E-telligence: Email Marketing Isn’t Dead, The Way You’re Using It Is’ earlier this year.

Please tell us about your business

eFocus Marketing provides specialist email marketing consultancy, management and training services to companies around the world looking to use email more intelligently, connect with their subscribers and increase their revenue.

What have been the main challenges facing marketers in 2019?

The biggest challenge I see amongst my clients is around a lack of strategy and not having the right data (or the right data in the right place) to implement the strategic and tactical elements they need to, in order to create a more personalised, targeted, high performing email programme.

What in marketing or business inspired you this year?

The move towards greater personalisation through technology (including AI) and increased interactivity in email. The way technology is progressing makes it ever easier for us to use email more intelligently to better serve our customers; and post GDPR we have seen those who are left on our lists more engaged in a lot of cases because we are having to be slightly more thoughtful about what we are sending to whom. If we can continue this and make it the core of our strategy and then use interactive email to make acting on our personalised recommendations and content even easier and more enjoyable, we will see even better results in 2020.

What should marketers be focussing on in 2020?

Being customer centric; putting the customer at the heart of everything that you do in all ways, always. By focussing on what your customers and prospects need, when they need it and how it will make them feel, we can create a strategy that connects, inspires, helps and educates in order to better meet our company objectives in both the short and long term. This comes from understanding who your customers are, what their needs are and being able to identify them within your database; and this comes back to collecting and utilising the right data in the right way. It is also imperative to know what your higher level business objectives are so that you can then focus your time and strategic efforts better. For example, if you’re company goal is to increase revenue and to do this, you have identified that through your marketing you need to increase the number of customers who make a repeat purchase (and again narrow this down to 1st to 2nd purchase or ongoing loyalty) you can then be much more focussed in the customers you need to target and how to achieve this.

Who are your marketing heroes?

Great question! I’m lucky enough to be surrounded by many amazing peers in the email marketing industry, too many to name I think (and I wouldn’t want to leave anyone out!). More generally though, I’m inspired by leaders of business such as Richard Branson and Michelle Mone

If you could give a tip to aspiring marketers what would that be?

Keep learning! Be inquisitive, ask and test everything to see how it works for your business. Collaborate with others and never be afraid to ask questions. And don’t forget the most important marketing channel – email of course!

You are sent to a desert island for 12 months – You can take 3 business books, 3 records and 1 luxury item – what would you take?

Eeek this is a hard question!


1. Start with Why – Simon Sinek

2. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

3. Hack the Buyer Brain


1. Can’t Hold Us (Macklemore & Ryan Lewis)

2. Waiting All Night (Rudimental)

3. Just in Case (Jaheim)

Luxury Item:


What do you think of Pure360’s new visual identity?

Love it – its much more in keeping with the brands personality, values and up to the minute tech. Well done team!

We would like to thank Kate Barrett for being one of our Marketing Heroes. You can follow Kate on social media at: