Twitter, Facebook, Google+ … with so much ‘new media’ out there, it’s easy to assume email marketing is outdated (E-mail marketing—ha! Why not just send a telegraph?). But though email may no longer be as sexy as social media, it’s got at least one major thing to recommend it: It works.
According to the Direct Marketing Association, email marketing far outshines the return on investment of other marketing channels. In fact, e-mail marketing returned $43.62 for every dollar spent on it in 2009, DMA reports. A few more stats:
- Promotional emails were the second biggest driver of retail website visits (following brand familiarity), according to ForeSee Results’ 2010 report on social media effectiveness.
- In Datran Media’s 2010 Annual Marketing & Media Survey, 39.4% of executives said email was the advertising channel that performed strongest for their companies (this was the top result).
- In the 2011 ‘Email Marketing Census’ conducted by Econsultancy, 72% of companies of companies rate email marketing as ‘excellent’ or ‘good’ for return on investment
What’s more, every email campaign you send out can lead to trove of actionable, quantitative data that you can use (or we can help you use!) to refine future communications and messaging.
Of course—as with all marketing—email marketing works best when it’s targeted. One of the quickest ways to tick off your customer base is to flood them with email spam! A good email marketing campaign will focus on a concrete, actionable goal (drive traffic to your site, increase registrations, etc.). While sites like Twitter and Facebook are good for engaging and starting a conversation with customers, email marketing works best when you’ve got some specific, (and one-sided) message to convey—an upcoming event, a sale or promotion, a new product line.
Customers like receiving emails when the information is relevant to them; in the ForeSee Results report mentioned above, 64 percent of respondents said their preferred method of communication with a company was via email (beating out postal mail, a company’s website, TV, social media, radio and text messaging).
None of this is to discount social media, or other web advertising channels. But neither should email marketing be discounted. A good web advertising and marketing strategy understands there’s a time and place for both.