Evolution of email marketing
When you think back 15 years, you touch down in 2002, where the leading mobile phone was Nokia and iPod was in its first generation. Email was starting to get more widespread use, growing in popularity and becoming a marketing force of nature.
It was the early 00s where marketing teams realised that email marketing was the perfect way to deliver messages to customers and prospective consumers. It was faster and more economical than snail post, and it was less annoying than cold calling. Email marketing was an effective way to send information to people, and it has grown more and more.
Despite people continuously saying that email marketing is dead, still 89% of marketers use email as their main lead-generating channel, it proves that it remains popular. From finance to retail, email marketing campaigns have been pushed by 86% of businesses to connect with consumers. With 40% of marketing emails converting customers, there will always be a place for email marketing.
In 2007, two big things happened to change the future of email marketing: Facebook and iPhone. Businesses jumped onto the social media bandwagon faster than ever, and with the smartphones taking better shapes, people approached email marketing differently.
Consumers expect brands to deliver emails that look good. Design is important, and while the emails of the past were not rife with emojis and GIFs, today’s consumers are expecting to see marketing emails that are designed to relate to them.
We want emails to look good, but we also want them to look good on every platform possible. So, emails that look good on a laptop must look good on a smartphone – or we close the tab and scroll. Any marketer who wants to reach an audience should ensure that they are creating email templates that will be easily read on all devices, with the use of imagery and graphics to drive more engagement.
With more engaged visitors, the better the conversions will be. Most email marketing campaigns of today are also more interactive, with video and countdown clocks incorporated into the code to make them stand out from every other email that hits the inbox. If you are writing emails to consumers, you first need to engage with them on design level which will encourage them to engage further with you and click through the links on the email.
A big part of engaging users has always been in the content of a webpage or campaign. Email marketing is no different, with content being the most significant factor in customer purchasing decisions. In the early 00s, when email marketing was new, the content was relevant to hook the reader and get them to want to click through and explore your offer in more detail.
Now, consumers receiving email would always rather have content to feel more personal, and our ability to use data this way has led to a much better email marketing experience. We can ensure that engagement is improved, and conversion rates are upped – simply by creating a journey based on the behavior of the recipient.
The emails that are targeted can also be automated and triggered to ensure that the correct message gets to the right people at the right time – the key to reaching people. Engaging customers doesn’t end at content, either. It goes beyond the click of the email and the service afterward.
Reaching out to people via email doesn’t have to be complicated, and today, we use data to reach more people than ever. The steps have remained the same, with identification of the desired outcome, reaching the right audience, and diving into what the audience want still being necessary. Now, we can use data to reach even further than those who are actively subscribed to our websites.
Data will always be the trump card for email marketing, and now that we are able to segment email marketing databases, content is personalized, and the reach is more prominent. With the right data, we can reach more people through social media and the website, and that can help with the response to the email campaigns.
Email marketing is stronger than it ever has been, and it works as a very powerful marketing channel for those who are looking for results. Getting that wider outreach is about reaching the right people with the correct data at the right time, and email marketing is making leaps and bounds to reach more and more people every day.
Call to Action
Once consumers have read and opened an email, the next stage is to get them to convert and take action. The call to action is the most important element alongside the right content that will hook your potential customer.
The whole point of a marketing email is to get a response, and there are now three things you need to remember in email marketing: a strong subject line, an offer to make them interested, and a call to action to make them click. It’s an instruction in the form of a sidebar or a button, and your language is essential here. Instructing the reader to do something is essential so that they have a clear message of what to do next.
Optimizing your calls to action and using action-oriented language is going to encourage that click. It has to be optimized so that no matter which device the email has been opened on, it’s clear and concise which action should be taken. Keep your call to action short, visible, and with a sense of urgency. We are better now at email marketing because of the call to action that we can write to capture the interest of the recipient.