Ever heard the old cliché, “Change is the only constant”?
Cliché or not, it couldn’t be truer in the marketing world. Every day, it seems like new technologies emerge, consumer behavior evolves, and best practices shift. And though email continues to remain one of the most effective marketing channels available (and one of the few channels that isn't going anywhere), it isn’t a static medium by any means.
Here are some pieces of data we’ve collected that shed a little light into the future of email marketing. Take a peek into the crystal ball with us, won’t you? It just might help inform your strategy moving forward – and help you stay ahead of the competition for years to come.
1. There are nearly 11 times more B2B organizations using marketing automation now than in 2011 (SiriusDecisions).
Automation is the best way to send timely, relevant emails to your subscribers... and it gets huge results. So it’s unsurprising that more and more marketers are catching on. The simple truth? If you aren’t automating at this point, you’re falling behind.
2. Two-thirds of marketers say they plan to innovate in 2016 by exploring more creative uses of behavioral triggers (Econsultancy).
That doesn’t mean you can just automate a welcome email and call it a day (though you should definitely do that, too!). Automating based on behavior – like attending an event, engaging with mailings, etc. – allows you to leverage more creative emails throughout the customer journey.
3. By 2017, online video will make up nearly 70% of consumer internet traffic (Tidal Labs).
Video is HUGE. At this point in time, it's one of the most shareable, engaging content mediums out there. So using it in your email marketing is a recipe for success – just be sure to keep best practices in mind when you do so.
4. More than 7 in 10 US consumers would prefer to receive email communications from businesses over direct mail, SMS, and push messages, and the preference for email extends across age groups and genders, per an Adestra study.
Yes, even Millennials prefer to hear from you via email. Think about it: Just because teens love Snapchat doesn’t mean they want to start getting Snaps from brands. Email, being a permission-based channel, feels inherently less intrusive than many of the shiny new platforms out there.
5. According to Econsultancy, 76% of marketers believe that all email messages will be completely personalized in the next 5 years.
Your audience expects personalized messages tailored to their individual needs and interests, and if they don’t get them, they’re gone. So if you want them to stick around for the long haul, you better be segmenting, automating, using dynamic content – all the things that help you send hyper-relevant email.
6. 70% of consumers believe email will still exist in 10 years, compared with 60.2% of consumers who believe Twitter will stick around and 56.2% who think direct mail will remain (Litmus and Fluent).
And they’re right. Despite all the many things that were supposed to “kill email,” it isn’t going anywhere, guys.
7. 46.5% of marketers believe that email marketing’s ROI will be even higher than it is now by the year 2020 (Litmus).
I apologize for the coffee you inevitably spilled after reading that. Higher than 4300%?! How is that even possible? Welcome to the future, friends – it’s a bright, wonderful place.
What do you think we can expect from email in the years to come? What should brands be doing to stay ahead of the curve? Sound off in the comments!
About the Author
McKenzie Gregory is a content writer on Emma’s marketing team. A Nashville native, she can be found covering all things email on the Emma blog, debating hyphenation rules, and watching obscene amounts of Netflix without a trace of shame.Follow on Twitter More Content by McKenzie Gregory