For many businesses, email marketing is the gift that keeps on giving.It powers the way they stay on top of customer needs, drive more sales leads, educate the market about their brand, and much more. Email marketing also keeps evolving, and to pay homage to this seemingly unstoppable marketing channel, I took a few moments this past week to make a list of the top reasons email marketing reigns supreme:
- Email marketing (still) dominates: As we approach the end of 2015, email continues to exhibit its supremacy as a marketing medium. A few of my favorite stats include:
- According to the Direct Marketing Association, email marketing yields an average 4,300% ROI for businesses in the U.S. (Wow)
- ExactTarget says that for every $1 spent on email marketing, the average ROI is $44.25.
- Hubspot says using email to nurture leads generates 50% more sales-ready leads at 33% lower cost. These nurtured leads produce, on average, a 20% increase in sales opportunities compared to non-nurtured leads.
These data points (andmany others) continue to prove email’s value to marketers, and solidify its rightful place in their plans for 2016.
- Email is ideal for building relationships: Creating trust and loyalty in your brand is the right approach to winning business these days. Email marketing allows businesses to build relationships with prospects, leads and current (and even past) customers by speaking directly to them about your products, services and brand. With email, there is no need to worry about invading their personal space, as they can check their in-boxes at times that are the most convenient for them. (And 91% of consumers check their email once per day.) With email, you can introduce new products or services, send newsletters, inform about online or in-person events, provide special offers, and much more. Email also does a better job of informingyour market than social media – a recent McKinsey study claims that email surpasses social media conversion rates by 40x.
- Email enables specific targeting: With email marketing, customer targeting can be increased through lead scoring, a classification methodology for ranking prospects against certain criteria. After all, not all prospects are in the same place in the buying cycle, and, as a result, they shouldn’t be treated all the same. For example, many will merely be in the “interest” phase. For these, marketers shouldn’t bombard them with sales pitches at a time when they may be merely looking for information to help them along their buying journey. In addition, list segmentation can be used for split tests to understand how certain groups of prospects respond to particular campaigns.
- Email supports the mobile revolution: Mobile devices have opened a huge opportunity for marketers. With access to customers 24/7 via their mobile devices, it’s now possible to capture customer attention anywhere and anytime. A recent report says that mobile devices account for 66 percent of email opens today. In addition, 64 percent of decision-makers read emails via mobile devices. There’s no question that email communication (not to mention all websites and graphics) should be designed to optimize the mobile viewing and buying experience.
- Email marketing is data driven: For many businesses (especially smaller ones), marketing budgets can be tight and carefully monitored. With email, statistics such as deliveries, opens, clicks, bounces, and unsubscribes can betracked and measured, so businesses know exactly how their campaigns are performing. This means they can make adjustments as needed, improving their email marketing effectiveness in the process.Recent reports say the top three metrics used to track email marketing effectiveness are click-through rates, followed by conversion rates and click-to-open rates.
- You don’t have to be an email expert to benefit: If you’re new to email marketing, don’t worry; you don’t have to tackle it alone. A study by Ascend2 shows that 53% of marketers rely on a combination of outsourced and in-house resources for their data-driven marketing processes, and at least 41% are leveraging data acquired from third parties to propel their campaigns.
The value of email marketing is indisputable. When other facets of the business world are often uncertain, it offers one sure thing to be thankful for now, and in the year ahead.
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