Commentary

Gmail Events Enhances Email Utility

Email marketers, especially those in the hospitality, travel, and entertainment industries, can revel in Gmail’s latest product enhancement, Gmail Events.  This new feature allows event details like a flight, concert, hotel reservation or restaurant reservation to display automatically on the calendar of any device synced with Gmail and Google Calendar.  The arduous task of Gmail users having to copy event details to a calendar has largely been solved through this new feature.  

Here are four important details that email marketers should consider about this new capability:

1. Event details displayed automatically in calendar events. Not only will the calendar capture the event, but also its details, like  location, flight information, reservation numbers, etc. This will make it easier for users to check any details closer to the event, especially those using a mobile device.

2. Event details are updated automatically. When an email is sent showing revisions to the original event, the calendar is automatically updated.  Users who have experienced a flight change or have updated hotel or restaurant reservations will find this feature incredibly useful.

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3. Notifications will work as they normally do, with one exception. Calendar notifications for events added through Gmail will work with the default calendar settings.  The exception is for flight notifications, which will not automatically trigger notifications from the calendar. Users will need to add these notifications to individual calendar events, so it will be important to inform your Gmail users that may not be aware of this exception.

4. QA will be important. While this new capability is very useful for users, don’t assume it will always work.  QA your campaigns using Gmail accounts tied to Google calendars to see what the experience looks like for a recipient of your event-type campaigns. Make sure that if the feature doesn’t work that the user experience still remains relevant and useful for your Gmail recipients. You want to make sure that there are no jarring gaps in the user experience that you weren’t anticipating due to this release.

Lastly, consider new opportunities from this enhanced functionality to enhance user experiences. Does your brand only confirm events via SMS or phone call?  Perhaps add an email to the mix to allow for Gmail Events.  Maybe your emails don’t contain event information in the confirmation email, but only behind a secure portal?  Now is the time to consider updating confirmations with the detailed event information.  

How do you plan to leverage Gmail Events?  Let me know in the comments.

3 comments about "Gmail Events Enhances Email Utility".
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  1. David Baker from Cordial, September 10, 2015 at 3:50 p.m.

    Nice Post April!

  2. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited, September 10, 2015 at 3:57 p.m.

    How important is it to take some responsiblity to keep track of your needs yourself (those without secretarys or assistants) using a digital and paper calendar ?

  3. April Mullen from Selligent, September 11, 2015 at 3:09 p.m.

    Thanks, David!

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