Commentary

How Email Marketing Checks Out

How good are email marketers? A study from Campaign Monitor, as reported today by PC Tech, shows that they mostly know what they’re doing. For example, 80% say their email strategy is successful against their competition. And 39% rate it as best in class. But their main goals are often their biggest problems.

For example, 38% want to improve at personalization. Yet 36% see this as their number one challenge.

Even more daunting is the chore of maintaining data quality. Only 32% cite improving customer intelligence as a top goal, but 54% say it’s their top hurdle.

Other things seem easier — for example, customer acquisition. Among the companies surveyed, 52% say it’s their No. 1 goal, but only 35% see it as the No. 1 roadblock.

In contrast, only 40% see retention as their primary email chore. And a mere 18% call it their biggest obstacle.

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Brand awareness, while the chief objective for 37%, is seen as an obstacle by 24%. And reducing costs barely figures into this — only 17% list it as their main goal.

What’s working, meanwhile? Emailers seem to have a handle on tactics like segmentation and individual messaging. But they are less certain about self-managed preference centers. Here’s the list:

  • Email segmentation—56%
  • Individual messaging—54%
  • Behavior-triggered emails—45%
  • Responsive design—31%
  • Social media integration—28%
  • Individualized mailing pages—27%
  • Self-managed preference center—21%

Question these results if you must. Campaign Monitor says it surveyed hundreds of marketers, but doesn’t say much about the methodology (at least not in this infographic.) And all the bulletted points may not confirm your experience. But the study does seem to be in line with other reports.

So ask yourself: Are your vendors supporting your email campaigns? And have you siloed your email off from other channels, or is it part of an integrated strategy? Analytics and personalization should be holistic — able to lift all boats. That’s the way to true email marketing success. 

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