Email. Dodo. Dead as…? Well just hold that thought and resist checking your inbox for a moment to consider the latest findings. Email has certainly suffered some recent bad press – as the home and health wrecker that’s a ‘toxic source of stress’ (British Psychological Society and the Future Work Centre, 2016). And common sense rather than yet another study should tell us that answering work emails after hours is bad for family life and your emotional wellbeing (Lehigh University, 2016).
But delivered when it is welcome, with compelling, relevant content that offers genuine value, email marketing is more powerful now than it has ever been. The Direct Marketing Association reports that email has an average ROI of £38 for each £1 spent (DMA National Client Email Report 2015). That’s a significant increase over the £24.93 reported in 2013, with over a third of companies producing £51 for every £1 spent.
Email marketing proves a staggering 40 times more effective than Facebook or Twitter (McKinsey and Company, ‘Why marketers should keep sending you emails, 2014). And if you are concerned that your carefully crafted digital missives face are heading for instant deletion, unread, take heart from the team at Forrester Research (North American Technographics Survey, 2014), who found that in 2014 consumers deleted fewer promo emails without looking – down 24.4% relative to 2010. Moreover, should an email be sufficiently interesting, consumers are more likely than ever to click through – with 65% choosing to do so. That’s significantly up on 2014, when this number was just 48% of the total (DMA Insight: Consumer email tracking study, 2016).
At Haymarket Network, the experience of our People Management team attests to the importance of regular email communication. PM’s email newsletter database recently passed 190,000 subscribers (vs c. 135,000 CIPD members/print magazine subscribers) and at the end of 2016, 57% of traffic to the CIPD website was attributable to email.
"Our readers come to us for trusted news, analysis and perspectives they can't get elsewhere,” explains Cathryn Newbery, People Management magazine’s multichannel editor. “We always see a traffic spike when we're able to break down complex legal changes, whether that's HRMC's changes to salary sacrifice schemes or rulings on holiday payments. But it's important that we reflect the 'lighter' side of HR, too; Pokemon Go and an unprofessional marriage proposal also piqued our audience's interest in 2016."
So how can you make every e-message count? Follow our top 6 tips:
1. Make it responsive
- 55% of email is now opened on a mobile device (Litmus Email Analytics, March 2016)
2. Give frequency options
- 44% of people say the biggest turnoff with mobile email is being sent them too often (LiveClicker and The Relevancy Group ‘Exploring the Benefits of Real-time Email – Driving Marketing Effectiveness, 2015)
3. Get your timing right
- Shoppers have the highest conversion rates via mobile during the evening; news hounds, entertainment fans, travellers and health buffs have the highest mobile email conversion rates in the morning (Live Intent ‘The People Behind the Screens: A Marketer’s Guide to Mobile Audiences’, 2015)
4. Don’t make your home page the click-through destination
- Companies see a 55% increase in leads when increasing their number of landing pages from 10 to 15 (Hubspot.com ‘Why you need to create more landing pages’, 2012)
5. Don’t dismiss younger audiences
- Nearly 68% of teens and 73% of Millennials say they prefer to receive communication from a business via email (Adestra’s 2016 Consumer Adoption & Usage Study)
6. Incorporate video
- Using the word ‘video’ in email subject lines boosts open rates by 19%, increases click through rates by 65% and reduces unsubscribers by 26% (Syndacast Video Marketing Statistics & Trends 2015)
You can follow Alison Krog on Twitter @brightonsarty