Executives are becoming more aware that e-mail offers the most immediate and actionable data. They are also beginning to understand that it is the most reliable. So is it any surprise that e-mail is increasingly relied upon as the means to initiate and maintain relationships between the brand and consumers? It’s no longer about getting a campaign out the door in order to boost revenue. E-mail is quickly becoming the primary tool in the marketer’s cache.
The key advantages of e-mail lie in its timeliness and individualized experience, which is why such a tremendous emphasis is now being placed on relevant e-mail marketing. On top of the availability of real-time customer data, e-mail also offers the flexibility to include more dynamic content and compelling offers. The ease with which dynamic content can be incorporated into HTML e-mail campaigns is its fundamental advantage over other marketing channels.
The reality is that e-mail is becoming more than just another component of a marketing program. It is becoming more integral to the brand experience, and customers like it. Brands need to work harder at delivering value and relevance with every communication, while offering consumers more control. E-mail is the ideal marketing channel because it acts as an extension of the company’s products or services while doing so on the customer’s individual terms. For example, by allowing customers to set their own frequency or preferences for e-mail communications, consumers have more control.
Of course, with experience comes responsibility, which is why with the increased visibility of e-mail and its importance to marketing success, we are also witnessing a shift to new metrics. These are measures of success that only e-mail and similar channels can provide. Online consumer behavior, analysis around message relevance, process vs. profit and lifetime value are metrics that traditional channels like print and television simply cannot provide.
Ultimately, the ability to orchestrate long-term consumer relationships combined with the ability to deliver reliable, unambiguous metrics will drive more companies to place e-mail at the forefront of their marketing efforts. Which means now is the time to ask: Is e-mail your marketing catalyst?
John Rizzi is president/CEO of e-Dialog.