According to Salesforce “State of marketing report 2016”, 80% of marketers think that email is core to their business. Email marketing is evolving as more and more businesses invest on new techniques and technologies.
Users habits are also changing. More people check emails on mobile phones compared to desktops. Many check it before going to sleep and after waking up while they are still in bed.
All these changes mean that you can no longer send the same email to hundreds and thousands of subscribers and hope for a good return on investment. New things are happening and new trends are coming along.
In this article, we will discuss the hottest trends in email marketing and why you should care.
In a recent email study by Adobe, 88% participants said that they are using smartphones to check email. Another study by Experian says that 56% of all emails are checked on mobile phones.
The exact percentage might differ from one target audience to another but one thing is sure, a big majority of people are checking their emails on mobile phones.
Optimizing emails for mobile phones is something most businesses are starting to take seriously. According to a research by Fluent. Inc, there was 87% increase in businesses using mobile friendly templates, during the past two years.
Walmart Canada saw 98% increase in mobile orders after implementing a responsive design.
The best tip on responsive design comes from Steve Jobs. He said that “design is not what it just looks like and feels like. Design is how it works”. The responsive email should not only look good on mobile phones, it needs to work as good as well.
We have recently published a detailed post on how to optimize your emails for mobile phone. You can go through the article or use our mobile-ready templates to adopt a mobile first approach.
Relevancy & Personalization:
In a study on the subject of “Digital Roadblock: Marketers Struggle to Reinvent Themselves“, marketers termed personalization to be their biggest priority.
IBM carried out the Email benchmark study and found that open rates dropped by 18.8% and click through rate dropped by 28.6% in this holiday season. Email volumes are on peak during the holidays and consumers are swamped by emails. The drop in open rate or clicks indicate that sending a special offer or discount is not enough.
Customers like to be contacted by businesses through email (50%), even more than social media (9%) or direct mail (22%), however most of them find the emails to be irrelevant or not interesting enough to consider. This was revealed in a recent survey by Adobe. Incorrect or irrelevant data was cited as the third biggest cause of annoyance by users. However, too much personalization was also cited as a problem in the same survey.
Companies will have to find the right balance between no personalization and too much personalization.
Businesses are starting to use the data like customer behavior and preferences to to create a personalized experience. Clymb managed to increase revenues by 71% with the help of personalized message and offers for customers.
Data Analysis & Automation:
We know that personalization is important. However, simply using the name of your recipient in the subject line doesn’t make it a personalized email.
Personalization means sending the right offer and the right content to the right people.
A business can have hundreds and thousands of subscribers. It is almost impossible to manually create a different email for each and everyone in the list. This is where predictive analysis and automation can help.
In a recent study about Analytics Trends in 2016, Deloitte stated that organizations will need around 1 million data scientists and interpreters by 2018. That is how big the “big data” has become. Machine learning topped the list when YouAppi asked CMOs about the technology that they will invest on the most in 2017.
Data analysis and machine learning is ideal for email marketing. It is not something for the future. Businesses are already using big data and machine intelligence to create more relevant emails. Machine learning can use specific data points to come up with personalized emails. All subscribers can get different content, products, or offers according to their preferences. Emails from Amazon or Netflix are good examples of such personalization.
78% participants in a survey by Econsultancy predicted that all email communication will be personalized in the next five years. This cannot be achieved manually. Sending a personalized email to each and everybody needs a dynamic combination of data points, machine intelligence, and automation. Emails generated through machine learning are far more engaging than segmentation because you are not customizing emails for a group, but for individuals.
Machine learning and predictive analysis is something we are taking quite seriously at SendPulse. Our platform allows you to use subscriber’s data to create user profiles. Then predictive technology is used to generate emails with personalized content. You can get the details on our website.
A case study of Soasta has shown that pages which are just 1 second faster can get 27% increase in conversions. Email marketers need to make it easy and quick for the recipients to take the desired action. Reducing the effort (number of clicks needed) and time (quick loading time) can result in significant increase in conversions.
An email marketing study on Econsultancy suggests that the average open rate is 23.4% but the average conversion rate is just 1%. It means that 23 out of 100 recipients will check the email but only 1 of them will convert into customer. This can be improved with the help of interactive emails.
Up till now, email marketers have aimed to get the recipients on the landing page. It is about to change with the trend of interactive emails.
Interactive emails can have navigation, search bars, and product tours so the users are not required to click and visit your website. Animated GIF, accordions, videos, and menus are some interactive elements that you can use in the emails. Soon, we will have the checkout option built in the emails so users can make a purchase right then and there.