Let’s Get Personal: Top Email Marketing Trends from 2021
The data is in: Email marketing is fueling today’s digital demand, nearly tripling in volume since 2020. We’ve witnessed all kinds of in-person interactions shift to online spaces. While it was a call for many businesses to strengthen their digital presence in order to stand out, it was also a totally new experience for others.
No matter what the future holds, the digital convenience we’ve now come to expect from the brands we love will continue to fuel the power of email. And that’s because the ways to engage with email have totally evolved too. Email is here to stay, but with the amount of competition in today’s digital space, stepping up your email game is crucial to stand out to your customers.
We’ve put together the top email marketing and data trends from 2021 to help you boost your campaign engagement and grow subscribers in 2022 and beyond.
Trend #1: Strike a Balance with Content Personalization and Automation
By now, you’ve probably heard it a hundred times — people expect their experiences to be more personal. That’s because the power of personalization isn’t just an email thing. 80% of customers say they’re more likely to make a purchase from a brand that provides personalized experiences.
And brands are listening. In a recent survey, 65% of marketers acknowledged they create at least two versions of an email to target the content to a specific audience, while others indicated they wrote at least four versions to hone in on their subscribers interests.
Everyone wants to feel special — especially to a brand they’re sharing their personal info with. So how can you ensure you are meeting those expectations?
- Optimize newsletter content beyond just a name. Use segmentation to tailor content based on previous interactions with products or services, location/geolocation, past purchases or donations, rewards status, and more.
- Implement daily automation schedules via triggered emails, audience segmentation, and drip or nurture campaigns that engage subscribers regularly based on certain actions, dates, customer milestones, and more.
- According to studies, the top personalized/automated styles of emails were welcome emails, post-purchase check-ins, and customer re-engagement. Utilizing these simple, but highly effective types of email strategies will help your brand increase meaningful interaction.
Not only does email content need to be consistent, but it also has to be conscious of the person who’s reading it.
Trend #2: New Privacy Measures Present New Marketing Opportunities
In order to personalize your content, you have to know your customers. And to do that, you need their data. But new privacy measures have become a big roadblock for marketers. With Google’s removal of third-party cookies on the horizon and Apple’s new Mail Privacy Protection, marketers will need to rethink how they measure performance and gather customer data. And 43% of marketers are already working on it — here’s how they’re doing it:
- Utilizing information from zero-party and first-party data (or data received directly from the individual) such as email and account preferences, site engagement, purchase history, and website activity.
- Create a preference center for your subscriber to customize what content they see, the amount of content they see, and how often they see it.
- Introduce Brand Indicators for Message Identification (BIMI), which verifies brands by showing a logo next to your sender’s name. This tactic has shown to increase open rates by 21%, giving recipients more confidence in the sender.
While this major privacy shift will definitely be a challenge for all marketers, those tuned in will see it as an opportunity to understand their customers on a deeper level and make their experiences more unique to them.
Trend #3: Agile Marketing and Outsourcing will Speed Up Production Cycles
Despite email workload and volumes increasing drastically over the past year (up 70% and 61%, respectively), email marketing budgets haven’t changed. And the teams responsible for them have actually gotten smaller. As the world turned upside down, smaller budgets and fewer staff were common trends for marketing teams, so workflows suffered and turnaround times slowed.
As relentless as marketers are, they found ways to be more agile — even with fewer resources. They utilized new development techniques, adopted approval processes, and adjusted priorities to accelerate delivery without sacrificing the integrity of the content.
This is how:
- Utilizing HTML templates or modular emails, as well as reusable components such as snippets and partials to have more flexibility, while maintaining brand authenticity.
- Rethinking the approach to communications and approvals to maximize time and productivity. Messaging apps like Slack or Teams, PM and workflow tools like Jira and Workfront, and video calls through Zoom and Google Teams are replacing cumbersome email threads and comments.
- Outsourcing email development to experienced production teams. Many marketers are working with digital production experts to ensure emails are built to implement QA processes, offer more customized experiences, accommodate quick changes, and streamline all approvals.
Elevating Your Email Marketing in 2022
At Assemble, we work to give your content the quality and time it deserves to not only reach your desired client base but also break through today’s distractions — like those in a crowded email inbox. We’re constantly taking advantage of the latest tools and trends to take your email campaigns to the next level. Contact us to learn more today.