To claim email as today’s digital marketing miracle seems oddly trendy—like someone claiming to have discovered avocados, simply because they added them to toast. The reality is email marketing has been around since email was a thing, but the fact is, after 46 years, email has emerged as the best performing digital channel. So, what’s changed, and how can you make email work for you (other than hiring TA, of course)?
- Remember why we use email in the first place.
Alright, here come the stats—just in case you’re still on the fence about email marketing as a viable digital channel. If you’re already sold, feel free to move on to number two (after all, time is money). If you’re sticking around, check this out: according to Forbes, over 70% of consumers claim that email is their preferred method for marketing communications. That’s huge! Email allows consumers the ability to exercise control over the type of marketing communications they would like to receive. Plus, through the use of opt-ins and responsive campaigns, businesses can respond to consumers that have already expressed interest in their brand. This greatly increases conversions and brand awareness. In addition to being the preferred method of communication, the average ROI on email marketing efforts outpaces all other digital channels. In fact, each dollar spent on email marketing efforts results in an average of $38 ROI. Email’s ability to meet consumers where they are, both in local and consumer journeys, allows consumers to customize their own purchasing journey.
- Testing results in actionable data
Testing email strategies should go far beyond just simply testing subject lines. While testing a subject line can have a significant impact on open rates, businesses should be testing all aspects of their email marketing strategy. Here are a few:
- Content type
- Send time
- Call to action
Each of these items can give you actionable insight you can use as you’re evaluating your email strategy and overall lifecycle marketing plan. This ability to test so many different factors sets email apart in the digital space. By using tools such as Litmus, businesses can gain a better understanding of where and how consumers are interacting with their content. The data gathered through testing allows emails to be optimized for each audience and the type of content being used.
- Optimize your strategy for continued success
Just because email has been around a long time doesn’t mean your email strategy should be stagnant, nor should it function independently from other digital and traditional marketing efforts. Email marketing should be a key ingredient in your lifecycle marketing plan, forming a cohesive ecosystem of marketing efforts. Achieving an integrated lifecycle marketing plan that uses digital and traditional mediums allows consumers to interact with a business or product in a wide variety of ways. This can help them experience your brand within a unique consumer experience that responds to their actions. Strategic email marketing enables you to gather valuable data and interact with consumers as they craft their own user stories.
Email marketing continues to adapt to new marketing trends and remains a vital part of digital marketing strategies, even as new channels, such as social media, gain more attention. Through effective testing and the implementation of a clear marketing strategy, email marketing can create a balance between content and consumer journeys for an unparalleled consumer experience. It seems that old dogs just might be able to learn new tricks after all.
Nethercott, Rustin. 10 Reasons your business needs email marketing. Forbes.