For those of you who don't know me (which is most of you), I am from Cincinnati, and as a result, I am a Bengals fan. My family and I flew into Cincinnati for the Bears-Bengals game, and Cincinnati scored touchdowns on its first 4 possessions, taking a quick 28-0 lead. Before the day was over they had rushed for more than 200 yards, thrown 5 touchdown passes and crushed the Bears 45-10. What a game to be my son's first live Bengals game. In fact, the game was so inspirational, I was able to draw comparisons between football and …
The holiday season is unique in that -- despite occurring at the same time each year -- it routinely catches many by surprise. Marketers are as guilty as anyone of falling victim to this phenomenon, cruising through the year until desk calendars start to shrink and someone in the office inevitably lets out a sigh and says, "I can't believe it's November." Translation: "We let it happen again."
Marketers are slowly catching up to their multichannel customers by ramping up usage of multichannel marketing tactics -- and email is at the core of many of those efforts.
I read a lot of posts about email marketing, yet I find we tend to simply repackage ideas, tips and thought leadership that have been discussed already. Think about the topics you hear about -- email strategy, personalization, segmentation, frequency, permission, rich media -- and how many different ways these topics have been spun. I have written this column for four years on a weekly basis, and I struggle at times to craft unique views of the space while not getting too far away from it.
My previous column, where I shared personal experiences about assumptions others have made about my wife and me without knowing us, turned out to be the second most popular column I've written for Email Insider, as measured by the number of readers' comments. I intended the column to caution against assuming too much about your subscribers and customers. However, reader reaction confirmed my view that showing a human, personal side in email, blogs and other communications content will lead to greater engagement with your customers and subscribers.
Email marketers have become the world's leading authorities on deliverability, readability, terminology, policy, client capability, predictability, reputation and metrics. If we don't slow down, we'll end up like the hack golfer who keeps buying new oversized drivers to straighten out his tee-shot, instead of fixing the hitch in his swing that's causing the nagging slice in the first place.
I'm a big proponent of designing for blocked images, which is something designers and coders are extremely good at -- but I wouldn't call it a best practice. Some will say that's heresy, given that approximately half of all email users block images by default, but there are some things that words just can't convey.
had the luxury of participating in several ESP user conferences this week. I take in as many sessions as I can, rarely staying for an entire session as there are so many topics I want to get bits and pieces from. It gives me great insight into where we are as an industry, what my fellow thought leaders are thinking and how we're organizing these messages. It's also a great time to catch up with the traveling band of "insiders" that tend to hit most events.
As an email marketer, there isn't a day that goes by that I don't sit at my desk, look at my email and scratch my head in absolute bewilderment -- or amazement, depending on the day. Let me share the recent inbox moments that made my go "hmmm." For better or for worse, here they are.
The Wall Street Journal is the latest to jump on the "email is dead" bandwagon. The article, "Why Email No Longer Rules... and what that means for the way we communicate," opens with the proclamation, "Email has had a good run as king of communications. But its reign is over." Yet according to a new study we just released, email's future is looking even brighter today than it was just three years ago. Here's why.