Inbox Insider: E-mailers should embrace social media

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Social media has been a scary word in the e-mail space since MySpace got big back in 2006. There has been talk that social media would kill e-mail and new channels like Twitter and Facebook will mean the demise of e-mail.

It is true that social media is hot in the consumer's world, but this should really not scare e-mail marketers. Rather, they should embrace it. E-mail and search are still the two biggest drivers of revenue in online marketing and if you can tie social media into these channels, it seems that this will only benefit your brand.


E-mail marketers are keen on this topic. I had meetings today with both iPost and Responsys, and both companies had big things to say about integrating channels and embracing these new channels as a part of an existing e-mail marketing program. After all, channels don't exist on their own.

Like most iPhone users, I use mine to look at e-mail, WAP sites and Facebook; for Apps; and to text and search. So it is only natural that brands looking to engage a consumer will build an integrated digital strategy to reach them across platforms, depending on the brand and the message.


It comes as no surprise that we are seeing new social media tools come to market from the e-mail marketing service companies. Datran Media, who was early on the social media e-mail scene, integrated social media tools into its StormPost e-mail marketing platform in 2008 and is perpetually expanding its “Share-to-Social” type capabilities. Lyris recently updated its Lyris HQ product to include monitoring, sharing and measurement of Twitter feeds. The firm already has the functionality to measure and track messages on Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn and Digg. Blue Sky Factory just released a product that lets e-mail subscribers share content on social networks including Facebook, Twitter, MySpace and Digg.


These tools should show us that social media is not going to kill e-mail, but rather it will help keep e-mail up-to-date and a part of the growing online social world.

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