U.S. Email Marketers Know the Truth: Cross-Channel, Real-Time Communication is Essential

U.S. Email Marketers Know the Truth: Cross-Channel, Real-Time Communication is Essential

“2015 will be an important year for brands looking to shift toward a next-generation approach to real-time email marketing, which most will find involves more than just email,” says a new eMarketer report.

“Email Marketing Benchmarks 2015: Are Performance Metrics Revealing Signs of Consumer Fatigue?” examines the need for relevancy, which has never been more critical.

“If consumers are going to engage with a brand, they expect that brand to know the best way to reach them and communicate with them,” says Spencer Kollas, vice president of global deliverability services at Experian Marketing Services. “They don’t care that your email marketing group isn’t going to get credit if you click on something through an SMS. They see you as one brand.”

What has changed?

“For a long time, email marketing was just the old-fashioned [email] blast, whereas now it’s more about being able to identify and engage people by using intelligence to know when to interact with them and what channel best fits that person. That’s where it’s all going,” Kollas contends.

One sign of improvement noted in the report is the evolution of messaging consumers after cart abandonment.

“Whereas before, latencies in data relay between systems often meant retailers were limited in their ability to send a follow-up email reminder in a timely manner, today, with systems better integrated, many companies can act on those findings in a matter of minutes, using multiple channels,” notes eMarketer.

It’s this real-time data (combined with an ability to centralize it across channels and act on it) pushing enhanced capabilities forward.

And U.S. marketers get it. The ability to utilize real-time data and centralize one’s customer database to make it actionable were among the top five 2015 email marketing priorities they acknowledged in polling done by The Relevancy Group.

In fact, the marketers queried indicated that critical areas include improving segmentation and targeting (35 percent); utilizing real-time data (33 percent); greater use of analytics in order to optimize communication (33 percent); improving email inbox delivery of messages (30 percent); and centralizing customer data and making it actionable (29 percent).