What’s your favorite social networking site? Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube cater to the post-sharing and reading activities of 3.6 billion people worldwide. Chances are you’d have one or more social media accounts yourself. I don’t know if you’ve noticed but, you and your family, friends, and work contacts connect through these apps more and more now – calling or messaging one another.
Then there are the many vendors and service providers whose social media sites you follow for more info on their latest offers.
Thus, the question: “Is email marketing dead?”
Is it? Dead? Is it languishing, wasting away, about to descend into the cellar of everybody’s collective memory? After all, email has been around since the 1970s, invented by Ray Tomlinson (a name we don’t hear that often, as well).
Well, before you even make any conclusions, maybe you should consider this first: Up to this very day, everyone’s online existence begins with an email address.
Do you want to download and use an app? Perhaps, you want to become a member of an online community? Maybe, like many others, you need to access your bank account electronically? You need to provide an email address for those.
Do you want to pay for bills, receive official documents (e.g., visas, transcripts, etc.) and e-tickets/e-vouchers online? Where will they send these if you do not have an email address?
These establish that you are essentially a digital ghost without an email address. Let’s look at some numbers and behaviors that illustrate how email marketing is much alive and kicking.
Email Software & Solutions
Through the years, more email software solutions have come out to compete in addressing different email needs. The solutions offered vary from deliverability of emails to the inbox (not the spam folder!), email templates, automation, integration, segmenting your recipient list, and giving analytics reports. One could enumerate 21 currently available and popular email solutions:
- Constant Contact
- Campaign Monitor
These email solutions assist in ensuring that the right people receive the right emails at the right time. The existence of these email software solutions indicates a substantial market for businesses needing to connect with a vast multitude of customers through email.
Number Of Email Users and Emails Sent
A data company, Statista, reported that by the year 2019, there were already 3.9 billion email users around the globe. The number will grow to an estimated 4.5 billion by 2024 — an 18% growth! It’s easily understandable because, in the US alone, 90% of people over the age of 15 years already use email. With how education is going online more and more nowadays, we will see an increasing number of younger users in years to come.
However, the number of email users is not just a figure pointing to warm bodies having empty inboxes and outboxes. It means an active, thriving base of users.
OptinMonster, a lead generation software company, reports that from 2017 – 2019, email users worldwide sent 281 billion emails daily, on average. That’s a total average of 102 trillion emails per year for those three years. By 2024, daily emails will increase to a high estimate of 362 billion per day, amounting to 132 trillion for that year.
Interestingly, a regular email subscriber is estimated to receive about 13 commercial emails per day. According to Campaign Monitor, a software company specializing in email marketing and automation, 72% of consumers even prefer to receive promotional content through email. Besides, 81% of retailer respondents said email marketing is more effective in getting new customers than 51% who favored social media.
That’s a lot of emails!
OptinMonster shares that virtually all email users check emails every single day. Some of them even check their inboxes for as frequently as 20 checks per day, not surprisingly, since readers open emails anywhere, anytime because of mobile devices. Noteworthy also is more than half of email users (58%) check their inboxes first thing every morning versus those who opt to click on social media first (14%).
Emails boast of a 22.86% and 3.71% open rate and click-through rate, respectively. These rates are much higher than the 0.58% overall engagement rate of Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Moreover, emails enjoy a very high “inbox placement rate” of reaching 85% of the intended recipients.
These are thus strong evidence that emails form part of an email subscriber’s digital day. Marketers can indeed expect results if they include an email series to their campaign. On the other hand, putting up a campaign solely hinged on social media dims hopes for hitting critical mass because materials will still battle their almighty algorithm.
Not A Free Pass
Email marketers need to heed specific warnings, though, even if emails seem to enjoy a high hit rate among its subscribers: they won’t accept anything and everything.
For one, subscribers can mark emails as spam. In its spam statistics report, Statista said that out of all the email traffic generated in March 2020, 53.95% went to spam jail.
Another issue email marketers need to watch out for is getting the big “Unsubscribe.” One’s email subscriber list is sure to remain loyal except if they encounter any of these top 3 circumstances according to OptinMonster:
- They feel that they’re getting sent too many emails by a sender/brand
- They no longer find the information they receive relevant
- They don’t recognize the sender/brand or remember signing up
Hence, email marketers need to think long and hard before blasting emails into the digital world. They need to keep emails from going to spam jail or being booted out of a subscriber’s inbox for good. Are their emails timely and sent in a consistent manner (not sent ala avalanche of emails)? Are their topics and content fresh and useful? Are their messages clear and consistent?
In A Nutshell
To conclude, yes, email marketing is very much alive. This article discussed how its subscriber base and usage would grow well into the coming years. Emails are very much part of their subscribers’ lives.
However, to ensure its health and good standing, it will serve email marketers well if they note its limitations. Emails may be construed as spam or may push a subscriber to click “Unsubscribe.” Thus, the onus is on the marketer to keep emails relevant and still part of a balanced, well-thought marketing campaign.