Consumers Value Email (Is Yours Valuable?)

We’ve known for awhile now that email works. But it’s still always nice to get a little data to affirm our passion for this channel.

So we were thrilled to see the release of a consumer survey from our friends at Epsilon. They found that an astonishing 84% of email recipients report clicking through on an email offer. The survey also found that 73% made an online purchase and 86% made an in-store purchase as the result of receiving a relevant email offer. In other words, when subscribers are happy, marketers will see tangible and impactful results.

It’s clear that the purchasing power of email users packs a potent punch, but the value of this channel is lost when the email isn’t relevant and valuable. Furthermore, as we have seen from Return Path data, the value of your email program builds over time. So staying relevant increases the loyalty of your subscribers and their response rate. Conversely, lack of relevance erodes value and leads to disengagement.

Consider these three simple ways to get your subscribers more engaged:

  • Give them a choice. One size doesn’t fit all, so provide meaningful options at sign up. This doesn’t necessarily mean you need to create more emails. If you are sending weekly now, you might do better to make them four monthly emails that readers can choose from. You’ll be sending fewer emails per subscriber, but their engagement level will go up. Don’t forget to create preference centers where they can manage their accounts.
  • Ask for their opinions through interactive surveys. Supply them with the option to participate in the relationship, and make this easy for them to do.
  • You can’t engage if your email doesn’t arrive. Ask permission to be in the subscriber’s personal address book. According to the Epsilon study, 78% of respondents have added a trusted email marketer to their whitelist, yet only 57% report being given that option by marketers. There’s just no excuse for marketers to lose out on such a simple opportunity to get their emails to the inbox and, in some cases, rendered with images.

If subscribers value what you’re sending, they’ll keep reading it. Build on this value over time and you’ll establish a long-lasting and mutually beneficial relationship. In fact, subscribers will not only come to associate your brand with fun, interesting email, they’ll come to expect it from you. That’s a win-win situation for everyone.

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