Why there's still life in the old email marketing dog yet

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Email marketing is enjoying a resurgence according to a new report from the DMA which says that ROI, delivery rates conversion rates and open and click-through rates all increased in 2014 compared to the year before.  As a result more than half of those surveyed (51%) expect to increase their budgets on email campaigns this year. Only 4% predict their email marketing budgets will decline.  

The results, from DMA’s National Client Email Report, shows that ROI on email campaigns rose 53% to an average of £38 for every £1 spent in 2014 compared to £24.93 the year before. The DMA claims this proves that there is “new life” in email.

The survey showed that nearly one in five (18%) respondents said that they saw an ROI of £70 on their email marketing campaigns – twice that of the average figure and more than three times that of the 2013 figures when only 5% saw such high levels of ROI.

Email marketing remains hugely popular for businesses with 90% of client businesses using it. The majority (also 90%) of these believe email to be either very important (54%) or important (36%) for achieving their business objectives. The figures are a reversal of trends seen in 2013.

The increase in metrics is a likely result of better targeting according to the report which says that businesses are moving away from “spray and pray” methods to a more considered approach to their email marketing. Blanket email marketing meanwhile has fallen.

The report also shows that marketing automation software is increasingly playing a more important role with an increase in revenue generated as a result of it. In 2012 19% of revenue came from emails sent because of behavioural and lifestyle triggers – a figure that had grown to 30% by 2014.

Sales was the main goal for 26% of campaigns, engagement for 22%, acquisition for 16%, lead generation for 12%, retention for 11% and brand awareness for 7%.

Chris Combemale, executive director of DMA, said it was unsurprising that the survey had showed a resurgence in email marketing. “Email is the oldest digital medium still in use,” he said. “Even now an email address is one of those things that helps define you in the digital world. It has endured because it is so useful,” he said.

The report results come from an online survey of DMA members and non-members between November 2014 and January 2015. DBS Data sponsored the report.

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