For years, marketers were anxious to sound the death knell for email marketing. It seemed to have become irrelevant; its reputation tarnished by shady Ponzi schemes and by cyber-criminals eager to plant their malicious programs into your network. Every year email marketing has proven its naysayers wrong. It remains a powerful tool for driving traffic and converting leads into sales. Email marketing is very much alive and should be part of your digital marketing strategy.
Statistics That Prove Email Marketing Is Very Much Alive
What was the first thing you did this morning after you woke up? If you’re like 60% of Americans, chances are you opened your smartphone and checked your email.
Studies have shown that people read their emails even before they brush their teeth. It’s the first thing that most people do in the morning and for at least 13% of the population, the last thing they do before they go to sleep.
In between breakfast and dinner, people continue to check their emails multiple times every day. Given its popularity of use, it is surprising to think that some marketers believe email is dead.
The truth is, statistics support the effectiveness of email as a tool for digital marketing. Here are some key numbers that prove email marketing continues to produce positive results for businesses:
- 59% of marketers surveyed responded that email marketing was the best avenue for generating revenue.
- Salesforce has measured the ROI on email marketing at 3,800%. That means you get on average, $38 for every dollar you invested.
- The B2B audience finds an email to be the third most influential resource behind industry thought-leaders and colleague recommendations.
The most telling statistic is that email, as a medium of communication, continues to grow. From 3.7 Billion email user accounts in 2017, this number is expected to grow to 4.1 Billion in 2021.
With such a large user base, email is an attractive distribution channel for content. It is the first thing people check in the morning and at night. In most cases, people visit their inbox five times per day.
Thus, email gives your content a high probability of being seen and opened. Having your content delivered in a subscriber’s inbox is like having your foot inside the door. All the subscriber needs to do is click through your email and let your content run its course.
Despite these encouraging statistics about email marketing, why have some marketers pronounced it dead?
The answer may have to do with a close relative in the digital marketing family: Social media marketing.
Email Marketing Versus Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing exploded into the mainstream consciousness when broadband technology made the Internet more accessible in 2004. By this time, the Internet had grown to more than 700 Million users. In comparison, 10 years earlier, the Internet was only accessible to 16 Million people.
Everyone had to be on some form of social media. People had a fun way to connect with family, and old friends. They had a platform where they could upload images and share opinions through the comments section.
Social media’s popularity opened up opportunities for new networks to build communities of users. However, it was Facebook that stood above everyone else. On any given day, there would be 3 Billion people on social media. Of the 3 Billion, 2 Billion would be on Facebook.
Businesses took notice of social media and its influence on consumers. Over time, social media evolved from a pastime and into a powerful driver of content. It seemed that social media’s popularity had swept email marketing on the wayside.
Is social media marketing a more effective distribution channel for content than email marketing?
If you ask, you may find marketers divided between social media marketing and email marketing. The best way to answer the question is to look at the numbers.
How does email marketing stack up to social media marketing in terms of performance and results? More specifically, if you had 3,000 email subscribers and 3,000 Facebook followers, which channel would produce better results for your content?
In a survey of internet marketers, MailMunch found that 60% of them found email marketing to be more effective than social media marketing in distributing content.
One reason is that social media networks such as Facebook and Twitter frequently change their algorithm. The changes have seriously compromised the organic reach of published content.
Some marketers report that only 2 to 5 out of 2,000 followers of Facebook will get to see their content. A study by [email protected] showed that the organic reach of Facebook dropped to only 6% in 2014.
In comparison, email has an average open rate of 21.73%. Therefore, if you were to distribute content via 3,000 email marketing and 3,000 Facebook followers media, these would be your projected results:
- Email Marketing – 653 will open your email
- Facebook – 180 will see your message
In terms of click-through rates, again email reigns supreme over social media marketing. Here are the average click-through rates between email marketing, Facebook, and Twitter:
- Email Marketing – 3.57%
- Facebook – 0.07%
- Twitter – 0.03%
Another study on the effectiveness of email marketing showed that it influenced the buying decision of 66% of respondents. The study cited the personalization of content as the main reason why email marketing works so well in converting leads to paying customers.
Highly- respected business consultancy group, McKinsey & Co. likewise entered into the email marketing versus social media marketing debate. In the company’s own study, McKinsey revealed that email marketing helped businesses acquire 40 times more customers than their combined efforts in Facebook and Twitter.
Finally, let’s look at some key data gathered by OptinMonster on the advantages of email marketing over social media marketing:
|Total Number of Users||2.7 Billion||2 Billion||313 Million|
|First item checked for the day||58%||11%||2%|
|Preferred Channel for Personal Messages||45%||4%||0%|
|Accepts content from a company or business they follow||44%||4%||0%|
|Made a purchase||66%||20%||6%|
|Organic Reach||79%||1 to 6%||<1 to 30%|
|Results in Positive ROI||21%||0%||15%|
|Customer Lifetime Value||+12%||+1%||-23%|
|Open Rate||18% (OR), 3.7% (CTR)||0.07%||0.03%|
We’re not saying that in view of these figures, you should forego social media marketing in favor of email marketing. Our point is that email marketing continues to remain relevant even in this age of social media.
Email is a proven driver of content that directly gets your message to your targeted audience. Instead of ignoring email marketing, it should be included in your digital marketing campaign strategy.
Conclusion – 3 Reasons Why Your Business Should Do Email Marketing
Hopefully, we’ve convinced you to do email marketing for your business. It is difficult to disprove the effectiveness of email marketing given the sheer volume of data that further validate its overall value.
If numbers aren’t your thing, here are 3 business development- related reasons why you should do email marketing:
1. Email Marketing Is Great For Sharing Content
To be clear, if there is one big advantage that social media has over email marketing is that it is a better vehicle for sharing content. The study conducted by OptinMonster showed that 57% of respondents preferred to share content via Facebook compared to only 4% for email.
However, the strength of sharing content via email marketing is that it is sent by the recipient to a member of his/her community who may be interested in your business’ products and services. The act of sharing becomes an indirect endorsement of your company.
2. Email Marketing Is Measurable
Email marketing is one of the easiest digital marketing tools to measure. You have access to analytics that will let you know the performance of every type of email content. By doing so, you have real-time, accurate data that will give you an idea of which campaign generates a higher ROI.
3. Email Marketing Is Cost- Effective
Email is a low- cost approach to distributing content. You don’t incur costs for printing, office supplies, and distribution. The only recurring costs may be when you decide to acquire and subscribe to email marketing services. Then again, the costs for a monthly subscription are minimal.
Email has been an integral part of life and work for decades. From its early “You’ve Got Mail” days, email remains the most popular item checked on your smartphone. And it will continue to grow over the next few years.
It is estimated that by 2020, there will be 257.7 Billion business and personal emails sent every day.
If you are interested in starting out an email marketing campaign, give us a call or drop us an email. We will get back to you right away. Mountaintop has extensive experience in helping our clients generate long-term and sustainable results with their email campaigns.
We are anxious to hear from you!
And if you have some ideas and suggestions that you would like to share about email marketing and why it is alive and well, please post them in the comments section below.