As we pass from one year to the next, the heart of (email) marketing continues to be the same. It is about rendering customer-centric practices. For email experiences, this is the mantra of right message, right person, right time. The closer you get to this the better the outcomes each year. This is simple to say but has been astonishingly hard to deliver. Broadcast email has been so useful because of the high cost and limited accuracy of solutions to get the right message, right time and the right person. That’s breaking, but don’t drain your broadcast activity just yet.
Trend 1 – Targeting
The best brands will be seizing behaviour across channels using it to enhance customer targeting. The channels in which a brand’s customers are active is brand particular, but in most cases, that means email clicks, App activity, website browsing, mobile, telesales and purchase behaviours.
Catching user interests with preference centres is dead in all but a few specific cases, or used as a last channel recovery attempt as part of an unsubscribe opt-down. Email marketing companies not using behaviour in 2017 will be turning into brands stuck in the past.
Trend 2 – Automation
Rather than shifting to automation, brands should be supplementing current email activity and merging in automation programs to complete the broadcast activity.
In fact, many of the brands already have components of automation incorporated into their email marketing software and they will be adding to this in 2017. But due to natural limitations in email automation, nobody should be considered stopping the use of using any broadcast.
The best trigger points for automation are those which show high intention for conversion and happen with right frequency. For example, someone adding a product or commodity to their wish list could be an excellent trigger point, but if your customer base almost never does that then such a trigger point has a very little value.
Trend 3 – Data regulation and privacy
It’s clear that regulation is going in a single direction only, worldwide. Permission is becoming stricter; what marketers can do with data is going to be more tightly regulated in coming days.
In Europe, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is agreed. We can soon expect to see privacy regulation changes too, as it needs to continue in step with data protection.
The ICO has validated that GDPR will be adopted, as implementation is needed before the Brexit timetable. Even after a Brexit has been achieved any brands marketing into the EU will need to follow GDPR. The long term worst case for brands could be following GDPR for EU residents and different regulations for the UK.
Trend 4 – Email creatives
A few brands have experimented with pushing the envelope of email design, such as making hamburger menus, carousel type elements, and interactive features in their emails. Often they are called interactive emails.
However, it’s far from clear whether this is really a good thing. Some of the design innovations in 2016 are doubtful in value. There are clever designs that make it difficult to access content by needing extra clicks to see all content, whereas a simple linear design showing all with scrolling would be better.
For even more thoughts on email marketing campaign in coming time, keep visiting us.