Saturday, November 27, 2010

Smart Email Communication

Every day when we open our inboxes, we encounter different types of emails: messages from friends, family, coworkers as well as promotional discounts and coupons from our favorite retailers or service providers.

Upcoming sales? New cross-selling suggestions? Reminders to visit a dentist or local bank? All of these messages end up piling up in your inbox with one purpose – to provide you with an incentive to buy something. Relevancy and visual attractiveness of the email will eventually determine whether it results in action or ends up in junk mail.

Thinking about how to make your email campaign successful? Nicole Birdsall, Group Product Manager of Communications at eBay, reveals several factors that happen behind the scenes of email marketing:
  • 58% of consumers start their online day by reading their emails. Meanwhile, 20 percent begin on search engines and 11 percent check their Facebook pages. Email popularity is growing and almost 2.85 million emails are sent out in the cyberspace per second;
  • Email marketing has the highest ROI comparing to other media channels. Per $1 spent in US email generates approximately $43 in return comparing to $21 from other non-email Internet marketing channels and $7 from print catalogs;
  • With growing popularity of smartphones, email marketing is projected to transform the way we read our emails. Special attention should be paid to phones where users can "interact" with emails through the touchscreens. Therefore, most important mobile platforms for testing today are Android, iPhone, Blackberry, and Palm;
  • As a marketer you should know that it's important to keep all of your important information above the fold since many of those users who open your email will never scroll down;
  • Even though we may think that Microsoft Outlook 2003 is outdated, we will be surprised to find out that it is being used by 28% of all B2B clients and 18% of B2C. Therefore, prior to launching your email campaign that features high resolution pictures or Adobe flash, keep in mind that your recipients may only see black boxes with small dots instead of all the fancy graphics;
  • Keeping up with new technology may be extremely useful for your company, but it's worth to note that testing different platforms is a key to your success. Are you sending your email from Yahoo? Do you know how it will look like in MSN inbox? The graphs below may help out during your testing process

  • Lastly, as ethical marketers, we all have to comply with regulations of CAN SPAM Act 2003 and always use permission marketing to opt-in and opt-out our customers. To find out more about the act please follow the link

Hope that these hints will help you to improve the effectiveness of your email campaign. Please feel free to share any thoughts or comments you may have.

P.S. Special thanks to Nicole Birdsall for graphics and data.


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