Today’s email marketing is vastly different from email marketing ten years ago. Advancements in technology have allowed email marketing to evolve at a rapid pace, with trends changing from year to year—and the year 2019 is no different.
This year saw several trends in email marketing, which subscribers have witnessed in their own inboxes. Here are five of the most notable trends in email marketing for 2019:
Mobile-responsiveness in email
In our hyper connected world, people use mobile devices for almost every facet of their day-to-day lives. People use their smartphones to order takeout, to buy groceries, to pay bills, to write reports for work, and of course, to check their emails.
Data indicates that over 50% of email opens occur on mobile. According to a report by IBM, mobile email open rates can jump to 60% for certain industries.
Source: Campaign Monitor
With the rise of mobile email usage, it’s no surprise that an increasing number of brands have started to prioritize their mobile customers. Companies now realize the importance of mobile design not just in email marketing, but in all aspects of digital marketing.
Fortunately, designing mobile-optimized emails is much simpler today than it was a few years ago. Brands can now take advantage of email marketing platforms that offer mobile-responsive templates. These templates are mobile-optimized from the outset and are also highly customizable, which means brands can use these templates for a wide range of emails such as welcome emails, event emails, and promotional emails.
Data privacy and security
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was implemented on May 25, 2018, and it has significantly changed the way companies execute their digital marketing.
Per Article 7 of the GDPR, customers must now give consent before their personal data can be processed by companies. Furthermore, companies must be able to provide proof of such consent.
This aspect of the GDPR has forever altered how companies do their email marketing as organizations can no longer send emails to just anyone. Most companies now use the double opt-in (confirmed opt-in) method of confirmation. Before adding new subscribers to their mailing list, companies will first send new subscribers an email asking them to confirm their subscription. This helps companies make sure that they only send emails to those who’ve consented.
In terms of security, Article 32 of the GDPR states that companies must take measures to ensure the security of personal data at all times. This includes (but are not limited to) the encryption of data and regular testing and evaluation of security protocols.
This means that companies need to take extra care in protecting the confidentiality of their email subscribers. Moreover, companies can no longer purchase and use email lists sourced from third parties.
Purely text-based emails that don’t offer any sort of deeper engagement are old news. Interactivity is becoming the norm in email marketing.
In a recent survey, 91% of people said they preferred consuming interactive content. The overwhelming consumer demand for interactive content has led to brands sending out more emails with elements that can be clicked on, tapped, or swiped. These elements come in the form of GIFs, clickable buttons and links, and even videos.
The popularity of interactive content among consumers has resulted in improved engagement and revenue for many brands. Data suggests that brands that implement interactivity in their email marketing can increase their click-to-open rates by 73% and generate twice as many conversions.
Gamification is the application of gaming principles and scenarios to non-gaming environments. In the context of email marketing, gamification means creating emails with elements like puzzles, quizzes, mini-board games (ex. scrabble), points scoring, competition among subscribers, and even lotteries.
The concept of gamification is new in email marketing, but is steadily gaining traction among digital marketers due to its impact on increasing email engagement and revenue.
Source: Campaign Monitor
Gamification provides subscribers with rewarding experiences. When a subscriber solves an email puzzle or wins a mini-game, they feel fulfilled, which allows them to become more engaged.
As any digital marketer knows, engaged audiences are more likely to make purchases. In fact, data from Accenture reveals that engaged customers spend 66% more than the average customer.
Through gamification, brands also gather valuable behavioral data from their subscribers. Each subscriber will engage with “gamified” emails in a specific way. Some subscribers will open the email and attempt to solve a puzzle multiple times until they get it right, some will try once and exit the email if they’re unsuccessful, while others won’t even open the email.
By collecting and analyzing this kind of data, email marketers can determine the most suitable types of emails to send to all their subscriber segments.
With its 4,400% ROI, it’s no secret that email is a highly effective digital marketing channel.
However, you can increase the effectiveness of email by combining it with other digital strategies.
Digital marketers are starting to realize that they don’t necessarily have to use each digital channel individually. Instead, they can integrate these channels with one another for maximum results. The perfect example is the integration of email marketing and social media.
Source: Campaign Monitor
The prevalence of social media has given marketers the opportunity to grow their email lists using Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other social networking platforms. Marketers simply post the links to their sign up forms on their social media pages.
Certain mail marketing platforms have also enabled marketers to take this type of integration a step further. Some platforms allow users to add a sign up form to their Facebook page, which appears as a separate tab on the page.
These trends played a considerable role in making email marketing what it is in 2019. However, that doesn’t mean that they will still be trends in the succeeding years. Email marketing is constantly evolving, so you need to keep yourself updated on the latest trends if you want to stay on top of your email game.
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