The Gift of Email Keeps on Giving

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Pour some eggnog, put your feet up, and catch up on some email marketing stats, facts, and insights that can inspire you for 2015.

The year-end holidays force many marketers to relax—if for no other reason than they need to use or lose those elusive vacation days. So, what better time to sit back with a tasty beverage and an e-reader and peruse articles about email strategies that can bolster performance in 2015? Here, 12 email insights to help keep you inspired during the days you have off between now and the New Year.

1. Email not mobile optimized yet? Now's the time: Nearly three quarters of consumers surveyed (73%) use their mobile phone to access one or more email accounts and 31% say their mobile phone is their primary email device, according to research by The Relevancy Group and Liveclicker. (Email in Real Time)

2. People may complain about how much email they get, but they still like it: 25% of consumers surveyed by Message Systems say email is their favorite for marketing messages; only 9% prefer text messages, 7% say postal mail, and 5% prefer social media. (Email Marketing in 2015: What's In and What's Out)

3. Marketers prefer it, too:  According to a recent study by Campaigner, more than 60% of executives surveyed say email marketing is their leading producer of ROI. (Email Is Still Most Marketers' Favorite)

4. Want customers to keep opening? Be relevant: “The litmus test I'd use is this: Would you want to read it? If not, then why would you assume someone else would?” says Len Shneyder, director of industry relations for Message Systems. “Make sure the communication is valuable, timely, and contextual. Start small; test different cadences. For example, two times a week versus three times. Ask people to return and update preferences, and then act on those preferences. Crawl, walk, and then run across the finish line.” (What Customers Love (and Hate) About Marketing Emails)

5. Data can help with that: 48% of marketers surveyed consider email marketing tools the useful for data-driven marketing and 44% consider email the most effective source for marketing data, says a study by Ascend2. (Data-Driven Marketing Speeds Success)

6. And, with building that all-important long-term customer relationship:  “Personalization [in email marketing] should be less about getting somebody to transact in a moment; it's about relationship,” says Erik Schulze, VP of customer experience and consumer strategies at Yes Lifecycle Marketing. (Email Personalization in 2015)

7 .Because better relationships lead to more opens, clicks, and sales: “Greater clicks is the objective,” says Quinn Jalli, SVP, strategic initiatives group, at Epsilon. “Marketers want opens, but the thing that matters most in email is click rates. Sales, of course, is tops, but clicks are a good proxy for conversions.” (For Patagonia, Timing Is Everything)

8. So do triggers: “According to our most recent Email Marketing Compass benchmark report, triggered campaigns achieve, on average, 2.5 times higher open rates than business-as-usual campaigns and garner twice their unique click rate,” says Linda Vetter, VP, Marketing, Yes Lifecycle Marketing. (What's Hot in Email Marketing?)

9. And tests—if you trust the results:  “Numbers don't lie,” says Andrew Kordek, cofounder of strategic email marketer Trendline Interactive. “Listen to your customers and trust your data, even if it goes against every fiber of your being. If subscribers tell you they're more engaged in the control version, go with it even if it isn't your preference. Sometimes ugly wins.” (Email's Top 12 Teachable Moments)

10. Practice makes perfect when it comes to getting email marketing right: “We're down to a pretty fine science now,” says Brandee Johnson, senior marketing manager for LEGO Education. “When we send out an email we can get almost within 1% [in terms of] what percent is going to open and what percent is going to click.” (Marketing Automation Helps LEGO Education Build Better Emails)

11. Clean data is also essential: “It's the quality of your list [that generates the greatest return]. It''s not necessarily the more email you send,” says Alex Lustberg, CMO of Lyris. (8 Email Marketing Myths Debunked)

12. When customers love you, they open your stuff: Unique clicks decreased in 2014 by 14%, and the overall email open rate is down 3%, according to Yesmail Interactive. But engaged customers are undeterred by volume. Opens among active email subscribers have increased 6% year over year. (Email's Mixed Messages)

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