The Norm is Not Normal Anymore

While we would have loved to see all your illustrious faces at an in-person event, 2020 still has other plans for us. So, instead we created The Summit, an online, live email marketing event. We hosted two panels focused on the email industry and what it’s been through this year (plus what we should be thinking about for 2021), and closed with an incredible keynote from renowned mountain climber Ed Viesturs.

I can’t stress this enough: You need to watch The Summit. Even if you’re feeling confident in your email marketing campaigns or have plans to make 2021 the best year ever, the energy and motivation provided by just 90 minutes are exactly what we need as we close out 2020.

If you want a taste of what you can expect for dedicating a portion of your day to The Summit, I get that. You’re a person of discerning tastes and a million to-dos, I respect your hustle.

Here are some top takeaways from the event to peak (get it?) your interest.

  • Email volume increases threw every marketer off-track.
    “We found ourselves in a pile of noise, because we all had something important to say,” recounted Laura Livingood, senior manager of marketing automation at TCF Bank and panelist. As a human being on the planet Earth, I know exactly what she means. My inbox was full of updates from every business outlining safety protocols, changes in procedures, and so much more. For marketers, it was exceedingly difficult to break through the noise. With our data showing email volume is still unusually high, this might be the new norm. Are you prepared?
  • Email authentication is not uncharted territory and shouldn’t be optional in 2021.
    While it’s not strictly “innovation” at this point, Marcel Becker from Verizon Media made it clear authentication is going to become a standard in the near future. At a mailbox provider, he knows better than most that the security features authentication like SPF, DKIM, and DMARC provide not just to the sender, but the recipient, and strongly authenticated email shouldn’t be the gold standard – it should be THE standard. If you’re not sure if you’re authenticating, or if you’ve got DMARC but a loose policy, consider whether 2021 is the year you get serious about protecting your email.
  • “We can climb out of adversity.”
    Yes, that is a direct quote. Ed Viesturs assured us this, too, shall pass, but we need to be resilient, determined, and agile. In fact, he relayed what he does while climbing and it’s beautiful in its simplicity: “Listening to the mountain.” As email marketers, surely you can identify at least one mountain telling what is and is not possible. Listen to the mountain, understand its limitations, and work to find the next best way to tackle it. 2020 can leave us feeling defeated, but a new year is on the horizon. If you have the insight, resources, and tools you need to succeed, the mountain might tell you what you want to hear. Unless you’re trying to design an email in Outlook, which, you know…probably not.

These are the standouts to me, but my recap has barely left basecamp.

…I’ll see myself out.

But first, I’m serious, watch the whole thing because you’ll get the context for the points listed above, plus another laundry list of things to help you improve your email performance. It’s worth your time, we hope you agree. If you have any questions about what you saw, drop us a line, too. Consider us your email sherpa.

OK, OK, I’m going.

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