If you want to stir things up a bit and drop a bit of controversy into your next marketing meeting, then slamming down your mug and announcing that ‘email marketing is dead’ is sure to spark some discussion and wake people up. Email marketing has been a popular focal point of digital marketing campaigns for years and coming up with that killer subject line has probably caused its fair share of sleep deprivation and sky-rocketed caffeine consumption.
So, why are people preaching that it’s the end of days for email marketing and that we should prepare to say, see you later? Well, it’s a myth. Email marketing is still a really important tool for marketers and consumers and there isn’t much evidence to show people are falling out of love with it either. In fact, 50% of marketers expected their email marketing budget to increase this year and email gives marketers their highest ROI.
Social Media Movements
With the rise of social media marketing and all of its fancy, shiny new methods, the idea that email marketing must therefore be less effective has cropped up. Yes, there will be instances where social media is more appropriate for marketing purposes and can get better results, but that’s too simplistic. It’s all about context, demographics and target markets and email marketing still has an important place with most groups. 89% of marketers say that email marketing is still their main source of lead generation and it’s better at acquiring new customers than Twitter or Facebook.
One key finding is that people are using email less for their personal relationships and talking more on social media. But they like ‘business’ information or info from companies to come through email. Some people don’t want their personal life and consumer life necessarily being all muddled together and want to stay social on social media. So, keep sending emails! Social media marketing certainly can’t do it all and it can’t replace email marketing.
There’s a view that email marketing is static and not as creative as social media marketing or other tools. But the ability to monitor and tweak campaigns means that it’s easy to try new things and see what works with customers. Targeted offerings and newsletters are just a couple of the things that email marketing is great at and it’s now driving cross-channel experiences.
More creative content is being produced to make email better for mobile and it’s essential for emails to be mobile-optimised; as well as providing hyper-targeted emails and location-based content. Visuals, videos and infographics are all ways of making email content dynamic. Behavioural email software and segmented emails are also allowing marketers to build up individual profiles for subscribers, so they can give them more personalised, relevant content. Touchpoints can be intelligently set up to give customers better content and info, in response to where they are in a customer journey. A strong 1-on-1 relationship with a customer can happen through email.
It Still Drives Sales
Let’s have a look at some stats for last November’s Black Friday in America; a day where shoppers of the USA unite and descend on their nearest outlets. Or they used to, now there are lots of deal to be made online too. In fact, email marketing was the biggest marketing channel and it drove around 25% of sales, compared to 1.7% for social media. It’s got clout! Email marketing is driving sales, improving relationships and providing useful content.
There we have it, a few reasons why email marketing isn’t dead, it’s not even mortally wounded, it’s doing just fine and having a little boogie at the same time. It might not be as fresh and exciting to marketers as other methods, but it’s a steady reliable marketing tool that does the job.