Been there, done that…
In a world inundated with a plethora of channels, devices and platforms, and given that the average 21st century human now has an attention span of a mere 8 seconds, it is perhaps all too easy to assume that as one of the longer established disciplines, email marketing is a dog that has had its day.
This would be a huge mistake because nothing could be further from the truth.
Research by Statista shows that in 2017 there were 3.7 billion email users globally and this figure is set to grow to 4.3 billion by 2022. More than that, the number of emails sent and received per day in 2017 was a hefty 269 billion, a figure predicted to rise to 333 billion by 2022.
These email users are also incredibly active, in the US alone 82% of workers check their work email at least every few hours outside of normal work hours, and 90% of them regularly check their personal email whilst at work.
Email Marketing is future-proofed?
Of course the platforms on which emails are being viewed have changed to suit the digital landscape of the new millennium – there will be 4.78 billion mobile phone users in the world by 2020 – however the fact that 59% of email opens worldwide occur on those phones shows that engagement with email marketing is as strong as it has ever been – if not stronger.
Put simply, email marketing is today as powerful, flexible and vibrant a tool for connecting with your potential and existing customers as it has ever been. Email marketing remains the most personal, direct and relevant way to engage with them. Because if you use your data well you can tailor every mail to reflect the behaviour of your audience, ensuring that every communication is relevant to their specifics wants and needs.
But all of this is only the “view from 30,000ft”. There are some very compelling reasons why you simply have to be using email marketing as a significant and essential part of your business’s success story.
It is a magnet for customer acquisition (and retention)
Email has not only the largest user base overall, it has the largest user base in every age group. Whilst the audience size for both email marketing and social media is roughly the same, and social media marketing is of course, an absolutely integral part of your overall marketing strategy, social media still lags behind email marketing across all metrics in terms of conversion and opening rates, CTR and engagement.
- The conversion rate for email marketing is over 6% compared to just under 2% for social media.
- Opening & CTR for email marketing sit at 23% and 3.7% respectively, whilst the engagement rate for social media sits at 0.58%.
Seriously though, don’t get us wrong, we are not “down” on social media at all. Quite the opposite, it can be an outstanding tool for you to use in the journey towards conversion. However, it will not get you there alone, and it absolutely will not do so in the most cost-effective way. Social media sits together with all the other elements you have to hand in a well-stocked marketing toolkit, and like email marketing, it needs to be deployed to its best effect.
To this end, whilst social media can be seen to open the door for your leads, it is email marketing that will seal the deal, converting them into active members and customers.
Research by eMarketer in 2016 showed that with both customer acquisition and retention email marketing tops the list in terms of effectiveness and cost efficiency, with 81% and 80% of respondents respectively saying that email marketing is the real driver for both customer acquisition and retention.
It is seriously cost effective
Regardless of the size of your organisation, email marketing is one of the most inexpensive ways with to engage and motivate your audience. The broad suite of highly intuitive tools at your fingertips in MarketingPlatform enables you to reach your audience, easily, effectively and inexpensively, especially when seen in comparison with other more traditional marketing channels such as radio, TV and direct mail.
For over a decade now, the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) has reported email marketing as being the channel that generates the highest ROI for marketers revealing that in the USA alone in 2018 a business saw an average return of $38 for every $1 spent on email marketing.
The supreme advantage of using an email marketing solution such as MarketingPlatform is that you can send precisely the same elements (and indeed more) as you would with a traditional direct mail campaign, all without the significant design, printing and distribution costs.
Sending out an email campaign can often cost less than you would spend on your lunch.
It lets you enter into genuine one-to-one conversations
As we explore in detail in our article Creative Segmentation – Going Beyond the Basics, email marketing, more than any other channel, allows you to converse with individual members of your audience in a totally personalised and uniquely relevant way.
Used imaginatively the information you have gathered from a range of data points on each respective user allows you to present them with content that is perfectly suited to their wants and needs.
The benefits of personalising email marketing campaigns are established beyond doubt, with research demonstrating that businesses delivering personalised offers and content based upon the browsing and shopping histories of their users see an average increase in sales of 20%, and by simply automating your email campaigns with personalised content you are very likely to see up to 6 times higher transaction rates.
Doing so will also ensure that your content is never regarded as spam – in fact your audience will start looking forward to receiving, opening, reading and responding to your mails.
Because you’ve clearly demonstrated that you are listening to them.
It encourages action
People are always much more likely to purchase something when they feel like they’ve invested something of themselves in a brand, product or service.
With your engaging and relevant email subject line you encourage the click to open an email, and as a result you begin that investment process.
Encouraging another click after reading the email is the next step on the path toward a conversion.
Even if a click doesn’t happen immediately, remember that email is transactional by nature, and continued emails to interested subscribers create a drip campaign that will lead to conversion.
Stick with it. Encouraging interaction will see results, some immediately, others over time.
It is measurable
Everything about email marketing is measurable. You can track everything, from who opened what and when, which links they clicked, and to where they went and what they did as a result of your campaign.
Quickly and easily you can build a picture of what is and isn’t working, especially within individual campaigns with A/B testing, which will mean you can both directly and dynamically adapt your content to ensure the right message is being sent, received and acted upon.
It is cross platform
As we explained earlier, we are avid checkers of our inboxes, be they work or personal in nature, which is why email marketing is such a vital part of any business growth strategy.
If you want to put your brand, product or service right in front of your potential and existing customers, email marketing will ensure that it happens.
It can be fully integrated
Because email marketing is so open functionally, it can be easily integrated into an automated omnichannel marketing campaign.
Messages you send in an email marketing campaign can change dynamically based upon the actions of a user in another channel – equally the content delivered in another channel can be adjusted based upon the behaviour of that user in response to your email marketing efforts.
And all of this can be achieved seamlessly.
It is a cornerstone of marketing 101
Email marketing is demonstrably the channel of preference for consumers when communicating with brands about promotions and updates. For you as a brand it is hugely cost effective, allowing you to produce and send personal, relevant and engaging content that delivers the highest marketing ROI by far.
Solutions such as MarketingPlatform enable you to significantly increase your one-to-one communication with prospective and existing customers, whilst simultaneously reducing the amount of time you or your team need to spend on doing so.
It is easy to optimise and improve because it is measurable, trackable, and testable. It is shareable, highly effective and finally, by way of putting a cherry on top of the cake – it is environmentally friendly! Something that may appear a little trite, but which in this day and age, simply cannot be underestimated.
As we enter the third decade of the third millennium, email marketing is not only relevant, it is a vital and very real part of the future of any truly effective marketing strategy.