On Thursday the 13th of March, Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp experienced a 9-hour outage. The outage occurred in the evening when it is prime time for social media use. Users could not access content, post, or comment on the platforms. Businesses that use Facebook and Instagram as their primary online marketing platforms suffered massive losses, both in terms of lost sale opportunities and ads that didn’t reach their intended audience.
There are lessons to be learned for entrepreneurs – diversify your content marketing. Relying on Facebook or Instagram means you will be a slave to the platforms. Although SMM (social media marketing) remains one of the most effective marketing methods today because of its low cost, feedback opportunities, sharing opportunities, and broad reach, entrepreneurs still need another option. And one of the most effective trends going to 2019 is email marketing.
Email marketing trends going into 2019
If your email lists are to have the desired results, you have to adapt to the latest trends. These include:
- Web-like experience within emails
Today’s online user expects much from you. You will need to provide a web-like experience within your emails without the reader having to launch into their browser. Google AMP and Apple are foreshadowing this, allowing for the completion of eCommerce transactions directly on the email.
- Privacy will be big
You have to demonstrate to those in your list and those you want to add that you will protect their data. We will start seeing end-to-end encryption (E2EE) and blockchain-based email solutions in the future.
- Greater automation and intelligent email marketing
In the future, the system will automatically pull content from existing sources and you will have less pressure to create content manually. Data science will enable you to use customer behavioral data, the products they buy and browse, and their profiles in developing the right marketing strategy.
- Emails will be a ‘luxury’ channel
As people become more proactive in dealing with spam mail, getting email addresses will be more difficult. You will need to prove you have highly personalized and highly relevant content and products to get them.
- Voice-based interaction
As more people use voice in the place of written text on their mobile phones, email copies will need to evolve along this line too.
- Artificial intelligence
AI will be used to boost collaborations, for voice commands, to gain insights, and for customer personalization.
- Personal touch
Even with AI and automation, do not forget the human touch which is what has endeared people to this type of marketing over the years.
- Automated email list categorization and pruning
Email list categorization and pruning take much time. Automation will not only free your time but also increase accuracy.
Even as new lead acquisition is automated, also automated will be automated re-engagement campaigns, replenishment emails (to refill stock), and automated cart abandonment campaigns.
Email lists – a proven marketing strategy
Email lists have been in use for several years now. The creation of a business website and the building of an email list have been a must for businesses that want to move from their brick-and-mortar stores to the Digital Age. These are assets that are as effective today as they were decades ago. So, why are email lists so useful in online marketing?
Email lists give you a high ROI (return on investment), with studies showing that the ROI is higher than that of other outreach strategies like direct mail and telemarketing. The high ROI is because you will be sending emails to people whom you have dealt with before (such as those who have bought from you before). Such people are more likely to engage with you positively because they will already know your product and know you are credible and reliable. Those who are not interested in what you have to offer can always opt out.
Your visitors will get the email immediately, and they will be able to reply to you in a matter of minutes. Other marketing methods take days. Most people read emails daily and today’s smartphones and 4G/5G network allow people to get email notifications immediately. There is too much content on social media sites, meaning you will not always reach your target audience.
Not all people are willing or able to make a purchase the first time they visit your site. Some do not have money at the time they first interact with you, some are just window shopping, and some need some time to research on your credibility and reliability. An email list allows you to remind these prospects of your products/services and to convert them into leads.
Getting to know your ideal customer
Understanding your audience
Email lists open a line of communication that allows you to understand your audience more, particularly their preferences and what they respond to best. The direct feedback you get will help you in product development.
Sharing emails can be quickly done. A member of your list may not be interested in what you are pushing, but s/he can forward the email to a friend, colleague, or relative who might be interested, thereby increasing the scope of your outreach.
You own the email lis t, and you have 100% access to it.
Less tech-savvy audience
Despite the popularity of Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms, not everybody is on them (especially the older generation, which has greater spending power).
You can use emails to drive engagement on your social media profiles and blogs.
Creating an email list is free of charge, as is sending emails.
There is also an overwhelming amount of content on social media sites, meaning you will not always reach everybody.
Other online marketing strategies to adopt in 2019
Cross-team input & development: All members of the team will contribute to the marketing effort.
More collaboration between brands: Brands are coming together to create different content, a good example being the collaborative content by GoPro’s “Stratos” and Red Bull. Options to explore include podcast trade-off interviews, social media “takeovers,” and collaborative case studies and research.
Have a mix of different elements and mediums: Other than SMM and email lists, diversify into paid ads (Pay-Per-Click or PPC), organic search (SEO), chatbots or Live video, and other online marketing strategies.
Put out free educative content for your audience: As an example, you can create content to teach the buyers of your products how the products are assembled or used. Blogs and other social media outlets are perfect for this type of content.
What are your thoughts and comments regarding online marketing? Please leave comments below.
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