For brands with large amounts of detailed user data, email marketing can be a simple and effective way of increasing brand awareness and conversions, using extremely targeted campaigns aimed at consumers who have already expressed interest in your products or services. What’s more is that email marketing is measurable, cost effective and easily shareable – but are marketers utilising this channel to its fullest? Figaro Digital spoke to Jennifer Watkiss, Head of Marketing Communications at Adestra, to find out more about the future of this communication channel, and how marketers can mix up their current offering to achieve greater cut through in the inbox.
Fatigue And Flatlining
Email automation is not new anymore, and the relatively low cost of implementation make it a clear choice for the vast majority of marketers, from global enterprises to SMEs. But some may think that at this advanced stage of digital confidence among consumers, we have seen it all. So how can brands continue to be successful with e-mail automation? “We’ll see marketers increasingly adopting First-Person Marketing.” Explains Watkiss. “This doesn’t only rely on advanced personalisation to offer subscribers a tailored email experience, but also learning from other channels, analysing data, and optimising messages.” First-Person Marketing shows a deeper and more receptive understanding of the customer journey, and the way content can be adapted across the process and also user to user.
“Rather than an end destination, First-Person Marketing is an iterative, incremental process that will really differentiate performance levels in email marketing.” Consumers want to feel singled out and cared for by their favourite brands, and First-Person Marketing enables marketers to do just that. This tactic may also go some way to reassuring consumers that the data they opt to share has real, tangible benefits. With the implementation of the GDPR looming, this is vital, as transparency will be a key factor in this newly changed relationship.
As email marketing continues to push forward and experiment in the digital space then, what are some of the new techniques marketers can hope to implement in the coming months and years? “Email is a traditional channel and has generally stayed very similar in terms of design capabilities for a long time.” Says Watkiss. “Last year we finally saw Google and Microsoft get on board with updating email clients so it’s easier to make them as interactive as the web. Great email design improves engagement rates, customer experience, and loyalty. Hopefully that will continue to bear out at scale as interactive design becomes more accessible.” While some of these techniques are in their infancy, and as-yet unproven, once marketers are able to send, highly targeted and personal communications, with less resistance, it will free marketers to polish their offering in other ways. “As this area develops, we’ll see marketers spend more time refining their strategy than creating emails, which should in turn lead to better email results.” Automation allows email marketers to get right into the core of their practice, the creative content and targeted emotional connections that will ultimately drive customer loyalty and sales.
Old Dog, New Tricks
Not content to rest as a “traditional” platform, email marketers continue to push the medium further, to illustrate more smoothly and eloquently its capabilities. We haven’t yet seen it all from email. But where might email design and user experience be heading in the next one to three years? “Highlights (in Inbox by Gmail) allows users to see information at a glance without even opening the email, and Amazon’s in-email delivery tracking are just two examples of how UX is already improving in the email channel.” Continues Watkiss. “From the marketer’s perspective, modular email design and user-friendly, robust email editors will allow a substantial decrease in time spent creating emails and an increased focus on email strategy.”
Is your email strategy getting dusty and dull? Perhaps you’re looking for some new ideas to connect with your consumer base, or just want to hear about the latest email tools and trends? The Figaro Digital Email & CRM Seminar on 4 May could be exactly what you’ve been looking for! Bringing together industry experts and great thought-leadership presentations, it’s a great opportunity to network with your peers and find out more about the developments currently shaping email marketing. Join us!
You can request a ticket here.
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