Email Is Still Huge, And That’s Where People Want To Be Marketed To

    September 9, 2012
    Chris Crum
    Comments are off for this post.

Email is thirty years old, and it’s arguably bigger than ever, despite other technological advancements in computing and communication. The number of emails sent per day continues to increase, and there are way more accounts than even Facebook has.

What has been more successful for you in your marketing efforts? Email or social media? Let us know in the comments.

This week, ReadWriteWeb interviewed “father of email,” Ray Tomlinson, who implemented an email system in 1971 on the ARPANET (Advanced Research Projects Agency Network). The piece cites some stats from the Radicati Group, saying that 144.8 billion emails are sent per day, and the number projected to hit 192.2 billion in 2016. Another stat from the same source: there are currently 3.4 billion email accounts worldwide, and somewhere around 75% of them are actually individual people.

That works out to be over 2.5 billion accounts of individual users. Facebook recently announced that it had hit the 955 million active user milestone, with just 552 million of them accessing it daily.

In the interview, Tomlinson is quoted as saying, “Email has the time difference – that is, you send it now, you read it later – you don’t have to have someone sitting there and ready to respond like you do with instant messaging to make it work and make it effective. You can use instant messaging that way, but if they’re not there, nothing happens, and you gotta remember that there may be a message coming back to you and go back to the IM client and look for the response.”

He also said he expects email to be around for “a good long time,” adding that “We may find that these other forms of communication may be merged with email.”

We are indeed still seeing the merge of other online communication channels with email. For example, earlier this summer, Facebook started listing Facebook email addresses as the default email address for users, as even the world’s largest social network recognizes email’s importance to the communication landscape. Google+ and Twitter have both recently made moves indicating that they are relying more on email for user engagement.

Email is even making its way to Google searches. Last month, Google introduced a new way for you to search your Gmail account right from the Google search box, perhaps enabling users to access old emails when they’re at their most relevant. It’s only in limited trial mode right now, but this could become an important Google feature sometime soon.

In this article, I talked about why this could make email marketing even better for conversions. The point I was trying to make is that it can make marketing messages available perhaps when they’re more relevant to the audience, when they’re actually searching for something that you’re selling. Basically, it adds some search marketing advantage to your email marketing efforts, though perhaps not in a way that’s as visible as straight paid search. But hey, it’s free.

ExactTarget’s Jeff Rohrs said in a piece about email’s 30th anniversary, “In fact, an overwhelming 77 percent of all consumers surveyed prefer to receive promotional messages from companies via email compared to five percent who prefer text messages and four percent who prefer Facebook. Email is also one of the most utilized apps on every smartphone — right up there with the phone, text messaging and the browser itself.”

Emphasis is mine, because those numbers are quite interesting, given how much we see about Facebook marketing these days.

According to a recent study from Experian, email volume rose 10% in the second quarter, compared to the second quarter of last year. This is only a continuation in a trend the firm says it has seen each quarter for the past three years. Open rates were similar to those in Q2 2011. While click rates declined from last year, the pace of that decline slowed. Revenue per email fro multi-channel retailers increased from $0.13 to $0.14.

According to that study, the average click rate rose for business products and services in Q2.

Business Products and Services

42% of brands, the firm says, enjoyed a “statistically significant” increase.

Is email as effective as it used to be? More? Less? Let us know what you think.

  • http://www.momentsnet.com Edmund Bridgewater

    i would like to market my biographical website,,,,,more

  • http://www.angersausomeaussies.com AngersAusomeAussies

    I use email & social media,but , I still prefer the old fashion way–by “telephone”. More personable & I can hear a voice.

  • http://www.galicianrustic.com Mark Adkinson

    I sell rustic housing but every email that I send when people get in touch says “if you sendme a phone number I will ring you” a lot do and that is 50% of a sale, If I can get people on a phone (they come from all over the world) I am half way to making a sale. My company facebook is usefull for promoting the changes and not much more.
    Thanks Chris

  • http://www.BNoticed.com Gregg

    We honestly do not do much with our social media page anymore. Mostly client testimonials. We have never really seen anything come from hours and hours of putting posts together and updating FB. We really stuck with our branding on FB and that takes many hours per post to setup the images and then write about it. We get better responses from email marketing, which takes just as much time as a FB post to put together. We stopped email newsletters pretty quickly. We don’t believe people have time, nor really want to read that much info. We don’t… Can you say DELETE! Put we will glance at an image and quick text that accompanies it and have found this to be true with our clients and potential clients. Although we have put a hold on our email marketing while we focus on programming a new system and working on updating our website, it is in the plan to begin email marketing again in the next couple of months. Email is here to stay, as the increase of use shows as well. There are certain things that cannot be sent in any other format like social media without losing the detail that is needed. We use graphics in our business and the artwork needs to be vector, which means emailing the artwork so we can work with the artwork as required for the best printing. As commented already, we love to pick up the phone, but we have found in this day of fast pace work and personal lives, we do not reach our clients by phone. BUT… Email them and we have a response in less than 5 minutes and most of the time faster than that.

  • http://inlandinternet.com chris

    Those are interesting results. With spam seemingly as bad as it’s ever been and carrying more and more malicious software you’d think that the effectiveness of email campaigns would diminish, not increase.

  • http://www.indonepaltrips.com Rupesh

    Email campaigns are still used huge..sometimes people just click “delete” button of their inbox though they never unsubscribe, because they think the emails may be useful in the future…in some extent, they are useful…Thank you very much for the post..it was useful..

  • http://www.talibconsultancy.co.uk/ learning english in England

    I like to contact by mail.It is so interesting to me.Email marketing is make the life easy. I also use the other media such as mobile or telephone.

  • http://expresspigeon.com Scott Winterroth

    Email Marketing is Huge. That’s why we created an awesome new email marketing program called Express Pigeon so everyone can harness the power of great looking newsletters. And we created a new program with an awesome visual editor to make the process simple and less time consuming so business can – and actually will – invest in email marketing because it’s not hard to actually produce.

    Chris – we would love for you to give our new product a try. Please email me if you’re interested.

    • http://ayatsaloevera.com Jaime Ferran

      Sr/s.Estoy interesado en su nuevo programa para el EmailMarketing
      el cual si fuera de mi interes, lo aplicaria, a mi nueva web proxima a finalizar, como introduccion a mis futuros clientes.
      su titulo ” Biblioteca del
      Emprendedor” con cerca de 2.000.000 de libros de Texto, de Infor-
      macion Empresarial,De Temas Especificos en sus distintas aplicaciones Ingineria,Farmeceutica,Bolsa,Marketin en sus diferentes aplicaciones, Etª, Etª. y mas de 1.400.000 son GRATIS.
      En la web, se indican varias Empresas (3 por el momento) de las
      cuales ” tenemos que vender sus productos ” es por ello que estoy
      interesadoen una solucion Novedosa,Sencilla y Amena que incite a
      leer el correo de ntrs. productos y al mismo tiempo recibir un
      Bono para la adquisicion de un Libro Gratis.
      Vds. me perdonaran por la exposicion efectuada, pero he preferido
      explicarles cual es mi interes, que no dudo, me daran alguna de sus ideas al respecto.Agradeciendo de antemano su colaboracion les saluda J.F.Ayats

  • http://www.mobilephonebizopportunity.com/ Gary @ Solavei

    I prefer email, facebook & Twitter. I am not sure what I would do with out all three of these. These three things alone keep many people up to date on all the current evenets around the world and so much more. They truly are amazing.

  • http://www.hispacar.com Hispacar

    Email is an important part of our marketing strategy with much higher conversion rates than social media marketing.

  • http://www.alltransformerstoys.com/ Arbudi

    I have never used email marketing but I am sure this will be a great project, I receive more than 5 email everyday from a number of sites.

  • http://www.nick-squires.com Nick Squires

    I have used email marketing for a number of years now and its most definitely the best way of gaining new customers over the long term.

    I do combine it with an auto responder system to make life easier and quite often I gain new clients via email who first showed an interest 3 or 4 years ago.

    Long live email.

    Nick Squires-The English Entrepreneur

  • http://nicholaswind.ca Nicholas Wind

    Email is awesome.
    I’ve always loved it and am now looking at an email video system.

  • http://bit.ly/RVTmaF John Banks

    Long Live the email…

    When I think of one of the most profitable email lists in the world – the discount coupon list, people still go nuts over this type of email. It will be around as long as the internet is!………

  • http://www.miscfinds4u.com Connie Seattle Mom Blogger

    Email is here to stay because it lets us organize information from all different sources into one place – instead of a feed reader I have blog updates sent to email. Facebook status updates – to email. Twitter DM’s to email. I connect to all of my social media through email.

    I don’t see anything else pulling all the resources together in one place as well.

  • Lydelle

    email campaigns often do have a higher conversion rate than social media campaigns. However, I do believe that social media’s real goal/strength is to help keep us relevant to our customers. Reinforcing our brands helps to strengthen email campaigns (all campaigns really). Let’s not get into an Abilene Paradox that email campaigns are the lone tool for online promotions.