Email remains the tried and true method in every marketer’s toolbox. Even more than social media, email provides an effective way for brands to directly connect with their audience. But just because it’s a proven strategy, that doesn’t mean email marketing is impervious to change. Like anything else in our digital world, email marketing (and, in particular, marketing automation emails) is ever in flux. Smart marketers are always looking ahead to the next big trends—and in this post, we want to highlight a few things you can expect to see in email marketing over the next year or two.
Targeting and Segmentation Will Rise
One of the things that makes email marketing so effective is that you can divide your audience into different groups, and tailor your message to meet that group’s pain points and preferences.
Targeting and segmentation are nothing new, yet many marketers are just beginning to understand how powerful these things can be. With the right data, you can hone each segment of your email list to ensure the right message always goes to the right person.
In the coming years, email marketing success will hinge on how smart you are with your list segmentation.
More Email Marketers Will Embrace Storytelling
Historically, the key to email marketing success has been succinctness. People don’t have hours to spend reading your email, so it’s best to get straight to the point.
Or is it? While we certainly advocate for email brevity, we also should note that more and more marketers are experimenting with storytelling—beginning their emails with brief anecdotes or scenarios, then leading into the pitch or the value proposition.
This is a riff on content marketing, and while it won’t work for all brands or in all scenarios, it’s something that you’ll see more and more of in years to come.
Mobile Dominance Will Continue
Hopefully this isn’t new information to you, but mobile optimization is something all marketers should prioritize—and that goes for emails, too.
Statistics show that it’s more likely your marketing email will be read on a mobile device than on a desktop. If you have an email marketing template that isn’t mobile-friendly, you’re courting disaster.
This isn’t a trend you’re going to see reversing any time soon, either—so double and triple check that your marketing emails look good on a variety of devices and email apps. They should be effortless to read, with no need for excessive zooming or scrolling. And, any buttons should be easily clickable.
Personalization Will Remain Valuable
Automated marketing emails provide ways to personalize your message—and doing so can often improve your emails’ efficacy. Something as simple as including the recipient’s name somewhere in the content, or addressing information unique to the recipient’s segment/demographic, can make the message feel that much more individualized and personable.
Again, this personalization is nothing new, but it’s gaining in prominence—and in the coming years, more and more marketers are likely to embrace it.
More Marketers Will Embrace Simplicity
Another trend worth noting is the move toward simplicity—but here it’s important to make a distinction. Simple, text-only marketing can be a useful approach, especially with email blasts. These Spartan messages stand out from the graphic-heavy email templates of the past, and some readers find them to be less corporatized.
With that said, automated marketing emails can still benefit from the occasional big, splashy graphic—especially if it’s something like a 20 percent offer or similar promotion. By all means, then, use graphics judiciously, and don’t be afraid to go big when it’s appropriate to do so.
Artificial Intelligence Will Play a Role
Last but not least, it’s increasingly hard to discuss any kind of marketing without mentioning AI. AI can certainly play a role in email marketing, and already some companies are using it to help make their emails more personal. For example, artificial intelligence can actually be used to generate more compelling and personalized subject lines, and to inject further individualization into each message.
That may not be something your business is ready to jump on right here and now, but it’s a trend worth keeping an eye on over the next few years. This is another innovation that’s probably not going anywhere soon.
Stay on Top of Email Marketing
The bottom line is that email marketing remains valuable—but it’s anything but stagnant. Trends and strategies are always changing, and savvy marketers stay on top of these evolutions.
That’s a big job, but our team can help you. The enCOMPASS email marketing pros stay on top of these trends so that you don’t have to, and we help clients adapt their strategies however they need to. Learn more about our cutting-edge email marketing efforts by reaching out to us today.
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