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Email Marketing: The Unsung Hero of Reach and Personalization

Marketers across every industry are bracing for the impending demise of third-party cookies. With dwindling amounts of third-party data, marketers are finding that advertising targeting and optimization is becoming more and more challenging, and as a result, user acquisition is becoming prohibitively expensive. In order to maintain the bottom line, marketers need to go beyond acquisition and focus on things like retention, engagement, cross-sell, upsell, and really the entire customer experience. Thankfully, there is a wealth of first party data that users afford brands through product interactions which savvy brands are leveraging to deliver more relevant, personalized experiences across a greater array of channels than ever before. Now that marketers are seeking the next hottest channel to reach their customers, the real unsung hero may already be sitting in consumers’ inboxes. Namely, email. 

Traditionally, marketers treat email as the workhorse of their marketing programs – important, sure, but basic and unexciting. Worldwide, more than 306 billion emails are sent and received every day and that number is only expected to grow, reaching nearly 350 billion emails per day by 2023. Hence, the generic, batch-and-blast emails that worked five years ago will certainly not sit well with today’s consumers.

The Building Blocks of a Successful Email Marketing Campaign 

Consumers today demand increasingly responsive and personalized messaging across all channels and email is no exception. To meet these expectations, the modern marketer needs to know how to ingest and leverage the right data. First-party customer data in particular is the most valuable, especially amid growing privacy regulations (e.g. IDFA) that limit third-party targeting. Email offers one of the most effective ways to reach, engage and retain customers in the new digital and privacy-focused era.

 While many marketers are familiar with traditional email campaigns, below are modern best practices to make the most out of your customer engagement efforts: 

  • Leveraging data to personalize in real-time: Customers share so much data with brands now, that it feels downright disrespectful not to react to it. Emails should be responsive to customer behaviors and offer personalized content based upon their past browsing and product behaviors. If a customer buys 3 pairs of jeans that have a 38 waist last week, you shouldn’t be advertising other products to them that only go up to a 36 waist the week after. 
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  • Weaving Email into the Omni-Channel Customer Journey: Email is more than just a channel—it generates revenue, creates loyalty and can serve as the foundation of a comprehensive marketing strategy. But while email is powerful, it isn’t an island. One of the best ways to optimize existing email programs is by complementing communications with supplemental outreach channels. In fact, Braze’s research found that using the right combination of campaign channels can significantly increase user retention. For example, a combination of email and in-app messaging saw a 96% increase in average user lifetime; and, a combination of email and web push saw a 92% increase in average user lifetime.
  • Intelligent and predictive capabilities: For email marketers, automation can help further personalize and optimize their email programs to remain competitive. New generations of intelligent features and predictive tools including send-time optimization, channel optimization, campaign optimization, churn prediction and purchase prediction can help ensure that each email reaches its full potential.
  • Next Generation Interactivity: Email is no longer just static HTML when done correctly. It’s now possible for brands to transform their email marketing from simple messages to dynamic units that function like little web applications inside the inbox. Features such as live delivery updates, responsive surveys and in-message shopping flows are all possible with today’s interactive emails. Integrating and leveraging technologies like Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) for Email, not to mention dynamic content partners like Movable Ink alongside your customer engagement platform can make this easier than ever before.

Recommended Marketing Technology News: Captify Launches Search-Powered Addressable TV, Strengthening Advertisers’ Ability to Reach In-Market Audiences

The Tangible Impact of Engaging Email Marketing Campaigns

Email is a strong channel on its own but taking a multi-channel approach through thoughtful marketing automation and customer engagement allows marketers to provide customers with brilliant experiences, message by message and channel by channel.  

While we already know that email significantly increases user retention, our research found there are things more marketers can do to hold on to users.

  • 60% increase in average user lifetime when Email and Push notifications are combined
  • 96% increase in average user lifetime when Email and In-app messages are combined 
  • 4X increase in average user lifetime when Email is combined with Push, In-App, and Web-push messages

When executed properly, email can play a major role in driving business outcomes and can offer a solid foundation of modern customer engagement. By taking a methodical and modernized approach to email, marketers can now move away from generic email content and towards a diverse, more personalized strategy that captures customer interest no matter where they are in their journey.

[To share your insights with us, please write to sghosh@martechseries.com]

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