Good, Bad, and Ugly of Email Marketing
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New Study Shows the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Email Marketing

Content RadarNow that spring has sprung, it’s time to clear the cobwebs and do a little spring cleaning with your content creation and content marketing practices. If you are still holding on to any marketing practices that are in significant need of a refresh, perhaps there is no better time than now to look forward toward the new opportunities on the horizon this spring.

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Marketers go all in on email, but have consumers had enough?

A new, extensive email marketing study indicates that marketers are more engaged in email marketing efforts than ever before. However, the engagement from email recipients is not on the same level. Of course, data around email marketing is so nuanced that it deserves a careful review — that’s why we are classifying news from this report good, bad, and ugly.

The good

The study reports that the volume of emails sent increased year-over-year from 2016 to 2017 by 18 percent, equaling 30 billion emails sent by marketers in 2017. A full 9 billion of those sent emails occurred in Q4, meaning that marketers became more aggressive emailers as the year progressed.

In more good news, not only were email marketers active, they also were getting better at sending well-designed content. More marketers are making it a practice to send responsive-designed emails. Those marketers who sent only responsive-designed emails saw a 13.1 percent click-to-open rate. On the other hand, those who did not use responsive design in their emails saw a 9.7 percent CTO.

The bad

Despite their increased efforts, email marketers as a whole have a few opportunities to improve. Perhaps the most prominent reason is because the number of new email subscribers continually dropped throughout the year. Whereas in Q1, email marketers saw a 6.1 percent increase of new subscribers, that number dropped to 5.1 percent (Q2), 4.3 percent (Q3), and all the way down to only a 3.5 percent increase in Q4.

Good, Bad, and Ugly of Email Marketing

Likewise, despite the overall increase of people using mobile devices, mobile clicks and opens have accounted for about 53 percent of all email actions for each of the last two years, meaning engagement among email users on mobile has plateaued.

The ugly

The study found that not only are 1 in 5 of your subscribers not regularly opening your emails, they are pretty much never opening your emails. The study found that 20 percent of those who have opted-in to receive an email from a brand have not opened any email from that brand in the last year. Ouch.

So, what can you do to get your subscribers to more regularly open the mail you are sending to them? Nathalie Lussier offers these five tips on her “Off the Charts” digital strategy show:

  1. Make your subject line like something that a friend would send to you.
  2. Make a note of what makes you want to open any of the emails that arrive in your inbox, even from friends and family.
  3. Build a little curiosity. Don’t give away everything in your subject line.
  4. Tell recipients what’s in it for them.
  5. Don’t use the word “free” anywhere in the email to avoid getting relegated to the spam inbox.

 

Content Radar

Starting this week, Reddit is rolling out native mobile ads. Brands may elect to disable comments and voting on ads to decrease risk of scrutiny from Reddit users, who are notorious for shunning branded content.

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Google doubled the number of “bad ads” it removed from its properties in 2017. The web behemoth increased the number of blocked ads from 1.7 billion in 2016 to 3.2 billion last year. The company says it removes about 100 misleading ads per second.

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A new ad this week is creating buzz for its insane coordination and ability to tell a life’s story in a matter of about a minute-and-a-half. Japanese food brand Glico used dozens of actors to show one year per second in the life of a woman.

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A new Facebook test is allowing a small group of creators to collect money from fans. Fans who choose to “sponsor” their favorite creators may receive benefits, such as badges, access to exclusive content, and other perks.

Chad Buleen

About Chad

Chad Buleen is an award-winning journalist, the manager of social messaging for a large international nonprofit, a digital media enthusiast and father of four. Follow him on Twitter .

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