2018 Email Marketing Industry Report from Campaign Monitor

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Campaign Monitor has published an interesting new marketing industry report. The company has surveyed over 200 marketers and email experts to asses the state of email marketing in 2018. While not all email marketers agree, in fact, some contradict each other, but the study is done well comprising various points of view in one coherent document. If you are a professional email marketers, or just a marketing enthusiast, we recommend that you regularly check their resources section of their website for some interesting and sometimes inspiring reads. As for this study, we are sharing just a few key takeaways from their full guide with our readers. Again, we highly recommend you spend some time on CampaignMonitor.com

  • Email is still the king of digital marketing.

No matter how many channels try to challenge the throne, they all come up short. The majority of respondents said they spend a quarter or less of their time on email, yet 59% said it continues to generate the most ROI for their organization. That places email far ahead of any other digital channel—long may it reign. Every year, someone writes an article proclaiming that email marketing is dead—and every year, they’re proven wrong. Batch-and-blast email marketing may be dead, and if it’s not, someone should put it out of its misery. But timely, relevant email marketing? It’s the beating heart of any successful digital marketing program, especially as digital saturation makes it harder than ever to compete for consumers’ attention.

  • It’s time to get personal with subscribers

Forget the dreaded batch-and-blast: Email works best when it’s used to serve up the kind of relevant content and offers consumers have come to expect from brands. However, many marketers aren’t there yet. 39% of respondents said they never personalize their emails, while 21% never use segmentation.  We believe segmentation is absolutely key to sending your most targeted, relevant messaging possible—and it leads to big-time results. According to eMarketer, 39% of email marketers that practice list segmentation see better open rates, 28% see lower opt-out and unsubscribe rates, and 24% see better email deliverability, increased sales leads, and greater revenue. But while some marketers have realized the power of segmentation, we still have a long way to go.

  • …and begin using tools like testing and automation.

53% of marketers never A/B test their emails (subject lines, CTAs, or send times), and an overwhelming 51% haven’t started automating, even for a welcome email. The reason we keep talking about these strategies is because for the most part, people still aren’t using them.

  • Marketers struggle with competing goals.

We understand that delivering useful content is key to creating lasting customer relationships, but internal goals don’t always line up. 58% say generating sales or leads are their most important indicator of success, versus just 34% who said fostering engagement is the most important. Email is like pizza: Even when it’s bad, it does the job. Despite its impressive ROI and standing as the top digital marketing channel, marketers could still be getting more from their email marketing. One of the best ways to improve your results over time is continual testing, yet 53% of marketers never A/B test their emails. Similarly, over half of marketers surveyed haven’t begun to use automation.

  • For the most part, industry buzzwords are just that.

Chatbots, AI, live video, influencer marketing… thought leaders love to talk about what’s possible, but the majority of marketers aren’t ready to invest in those strategies quite yet. When polled, fewer than 10% of our respondents said they planned to use any of them in the coming year.