The Case For Accepting Gmail As A Business Email Address

PDF downloads are a common digital marketing tactic of B2B companies, but marketers are hindering themselves if they only accept certain types of email addresses. 

A majority of marketers leverage downloadable documents or presentations as part of their content marketing strategy, according to a 2015 study by the Content Marketing Institute. In a poll of more than 1500 global B2B marketers, 82% responded that they use case studies to promote their company, 71% leveraged white papers and 65% used online presentations.

Furthermore, 49% of B2B marketers offer downloadable research reports, 39% eBooks and 26% print magazines, according to the study. On average, marketers use just over a dozen different types of content marketing tactics.



While in-person events were ranked as the most effective B2B marketing tactic, more than 60% of marketers agreed that downloadable content such as webinars, case studies, white papers, videos and research reports were an effective recruiting tactic for B2B industries.

Downloads are not only a popular and effective content marketing tactic, but also an opportunity for brands to collect contact information in exchange for the desired documents. Most B2B companies send downloadable content to a subscriber’s email address once it’s been collected, which establishes a potentially fruitful email marketing relationship. 

As of June 2016, 15.3 million Americans were self-employed, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. A third are unincorporated, meaning that they are more likely to communicate with a personal email address as opposed to a corporate account. An additional 53 million Americans identify as freelancers or independent workers, according to a 2014 study by the Freelancers Union.

Considering that Gmail is the most popular email client with more than a billion users, companies are shooting themselves in the foot if they refuse to collect that holiest of grails of contact information: email.


1 comment about "The Case For Accepting Gmail As A Business Email Address".
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  1. Robin Caller from LOLA GROVE, July 1, 2016 at 3:43 p.m.

    Dear Jess,  The case for accepting a Gmail address as an acceptable email address for b2b lead and demand generation doesn't really rest on such statistics.
    In fact, your point about the owner being self-employed perhaps goes against the argument if the Advertiser is looking to reach the in-house director or decision maker, influencer, specifier etc.
    Ultimately,  it makes sense for us to assess the 'value' that is achieved or obtained by the Advertisers from the delta of registrants who provide Gmail accounts rather than corporate email addresses.
    Certainly,  I think most would concur with you that Advertisers would be missing some good future potential value if they refuse to accept or respond to/nurture people registering with Gmail addresses. 
    But to be honest, there are far more fundamental principles and standards of practice to fix before we try to get the Advertisers to pay a (perhaps lower) price for the Gmail address leads. 
    Feel free to ping me offline if you would like to discuss this further.  

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