Friday, June 09, 2017

Email Marketing: The Past, Present & Future

From an internal messaging tool in 1971, email has evolved to become a powerful channel in digital marketing. With an average of 20.5 billion emails sent daily to 2.6 active email accounts, email marketing generates roughly $19.3 billion dollars and provides tough competition to social media channels.

See the infographic on the left for the evolution of email technology allowing it to be a powerful marketing channel.

In fact, the evolution of email marketing doesn’t stop here. Here are few factors which could have significant impact on email marketing in the future:

·      Machine Learning & Personalization
Study shows that subscribers respond better to email when the content is catered to their personal interests and needs. As we learned in our Marketing Strategy course, a simple change in addressing customers using their first names results in better Click-Through-Rate. In the real world, machine learning techniques are used to analyze customers’ past activity with a brand to provide personalized content and recommendation. See an example email from Birchbox below.

·      Multi-device Support
Increased popularity of mobile devices, wearables and smart appliances is all set to pave the way for innovations in email marketing integration. Imagine the day when an email is sent to your refrigerator to remind you to stock up on juices and where you can get them.

·      Voice Interfaces
Voice-based search has been gaining a lot of traction this year. With established players such as Apple Siri, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Microsoft Corona, email marketing may have a different form in the future, where it puts renewed emphasis on plain text and voice-html so that brands can create messaging that’s designed to be read aloud.

In summary, email marketing has never been more alive. While email is a well-established technology, further development on how users consume information will impact the content and format of emails in the future.


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