Having overcome its Noughties’ associations with spam, email marketing remains one of the key tools in any company’s armory. It consistently outperforms social media and online advertising in terms of conversions and ROI. However, choosing the right strategy is becoming increasingly important for ensuring a respectable response rate. Audiences have become more sophisticated, while spam filters increasingly target generic Bcc’d bulk mail.
These are some of the key email marketing tips and trends to consider in 2017…
- Automation software. Automated messages can be used to acknowledge new account activations, confirm purchases, provide shipping updates and reset passwords. Analytics software from Google and Adobe also provides detailed feedback on email marketing campaigns without requiring a team of statisticians.
- Interactivity. There is a fine line between making messages more engaging and making them more confusing, but expect to see more interactive emails being sent this year. These dynamic elements may include image galleries, reviews, search bars and countdown clocks.
- Reduced message sizes. Attention spans are dwindling and time is a precious commodity. Little wonder that prioritising quality over quantity is among the top email marketing tips. Mobile-friendly 100-word messages with 40-character headlines and bold bullet-point sentences are optimal, written in a friendly tone.
- Real-time messaging. Knowing when customers are most likely to read a message can underpin a whole new approach to real-time emails. From weather and key dates to stock levels and audience location, contextual data will be used for live targeting.
- Mobile orientation. With most web traffic carried via mobile, two thirds of emails are read on the go. Not only do messages have to display equally clearly on a four-inch and twenty four-inch screen, they should also click through to a mobile-friendly site.
- Greater personalization. Forget putting someone’s first name in body text – many of 2017’s email marketing tips involve algorithmic targeting. Demographic and behavioral trends can be harnessed to develop specific audience segments deemed most likely to respond positively to emails.
- Dynamic content. There is a line of thinking that increasing HTML5 video support will see video become a key driver in 2017, though some analysts disagree. The use of bold images or animated GIFs almost doubles content views, and the same is true of emojis when targeting young audiences.
- Greater use of templates. Content is king, and design is secondary. Nobody buys a product because of email coding, so one of the top email marketing tips for 2017 involves using modular templates. These will allow firms to focus on incentives.
- Social media sharing. Research suggests CTRs improve by 150 per cent when social sharing buttons are included. This is particularly pertinent for campaigns that can be followed on Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/Snapchat, while feeds can even be merged into emails for up-to-the-minute news.
- Live shopping updates. Incomplete orders can be encouraged with an email reminder listing items in a customer’s basket. The increased interactivity discussed above allows basket manipulation and even one-click checkouts from within messages.