Web marketing is evolving quickly, which means the ability to plan strategy effectively (fewer than 30 percent of B2C marketers have a documented strategy) and making data-driven decisions will continue to grow in importance.
We’ll continue to see methods like influencer marketing and native advertising increase in prominence as well, given the diminishing reach of organic social-media marketing and the sheer number of content messages consumers are receiving every day. It’s getting harder and harder to get content seen, and these two techniques offer a quick bypass for reaching customers who are already engaged.
That said, we will pick one technique or tool to focus on, email marketing.
Studies consistently prove email marketing is one of the most effective marketing strategies out there.
For instance, a study by Gigaom asked marketers to rank their most effective digital-marketing tactics, and the responses unanimously pointed to email as the best method for achieving awareness, acquisition, conversion and retention.
Further research from the Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs indicates that, among companies surveyed, email represented the most important metric for determining content marketing success.
What I’m finding intriguing as we go into 2017 is the way major media companies are investing in email marketing. Data gathered by Campaign Monitor suggests that:
- Buzzfeed has “added over 1 million email subscribers in the past 12 months.”
- The Washington Post “now has over 75 e-newsletters.”
- The New York Times “has 12 people dedicated to newsletters.”
What to focus on
So, if you’re going to invest in email marketing in 2017 you need to know that email marketing these days is about more than simply loading up generic autoresponder messages to be blasted to your lists.
Email list segmentation
Marketing these days is too personalized to send the same message to massive groups of people. Data from Ascend2 suggests that, “The ability to segment email lists and individualize email campaign messaging are the most effective personalization tactics for 51 percent and 50 percent of marketing influencers respectively.”
The Epsilon Email Institute reports that “Automated email messages average 70.5 percent higher open rates and 152 percent higher click-through rates than “business as usual” marketing messages.” That’s huge, and it highlights the importance of planning an email marketing strategy for 2017 that’s personalized and responsive to the needs of your customers.