7 Epic Email Trends That Are Driving ROI
By Julie Graham / July 27, 2016

It’s no secret that the email community continues to grow and innovate. Email definitely got its swagger back and we’ve got your front row seats to the 7 hottest marketing trends in the email marketing space.

We’ve done all the dirty work for you and are cutting to the chase to expose the most successful and cutting edge trends in email marketing to give you the successful formulas for lasting email program success and overall business growth in BlueHornet’s 2016 Email Marketing Trends Whitepaper  (download it today!).

Want the reader’s digest of what it includes? We’ve got you covered below:

Fluid Design

In the second half of 2016 the majority of all email will be opened on mobile devices. Last year, email experts claimed that only 40% of consumers were opening email on their mobile devices. However, this is the year of mobile-centric marketing with over 51% of email being opened on mobile devices, 23% higher CTR on responsive email templates and 36.1% of all e-commerce conversions being driven by mobile shopping. Brands that are sending well optimized emails with easy-to-buy (and read) buttons will drive higher revenue by facilitating a friendlier shopping experience in their responsive design. Need help with responsive design? We’ve got you covered for that too (keep reading). 

Relationship-Boosting Segmentation

It’s no surprise that the biggest opportunity in email marketing is also the biggest challenge – relevancy. Data gathering strategies that aggregate information such as lifestyle demographics, gender, age and income help a marketer have more relevant conversations with potential buyers. However, considering the various positions a prospect can take in a marketing funnel should be a key driving factor behind the type of content you are delivering. Think of these initial segmented sends, using the data you know, just like a first date – you can’t just meet someone at a bar and ask them to marry you right away (aka convert). If a prospect is within the discovery phase of your brand, this is your opportunity to add value to your presence in their inbox and strengthen the relationship. It’s up to you to listen to what they are telling you, understand what you gathering and leverage it in converstaons that are both relevant and meaningful to your potential buyer.

Personalized Content

The key to successful email marketing (or really any kind of marketing for that matter) is building a 1:1 relationship with followers and subscribers. Batch and blast is completely on its way out the door (hooray!) and statistics are showing how such general sends can actually hurt a brands bottom line. Hyper-personalization improves both CTR and conversion rates and 2016 is all about dynamic content. If you’re not gathering data on what your prospects are interested in (ie. recent browse activity or purchase history) and delivering real-time and relevant products and services based on that information, you are most definitely missing the mark. The time to send relevant content is yesterday.

Triggered Campaigns

Automated marketing emails typically outperform business-as-usual emails because they leverage the buying stage that a consumer is in, at the exact moment they’re in it. Extremely detailed insight on consumer behavior arms marketers with the ability to create seamless and unified experiences to deliver relevant information. Triggered and automated emails, such as asking a user to share the e-book they just downloaded or reminding them that they still have item sitting their shopping cart, play a large role in strengthening and adding value to the overall relationship.

Go Interactive

User interactivity and powerful animation within an email is really starting to catch-on. It’s only a matter of time before this new “kinetic email” (buzzword alert!) becomes more mainstream. The transition from static to animated experiences is indicative of the power behind storytelling and hugely improves the experience for subscribers and followers. Interactivity within emails like videos, GIF’s, slide animations and countdown clocks are more than just eye candy, they convey emotion and excitement with the recipient that facilitate overall deeper connection.

Proximity Marketing

Contextual marketing is a relatively new phenomenon that is still considered cutting edge in the marketing technology sphere. The goal of this type of marketing is to unify online and offline shopping experiences, as well as to provide real-time advice and perks to the recipient. It works by a shortwave radio being triggered in an app on a users phone (based on behavior, time of day, geo region the user is in, etc.) to produce a relevant and meaningful email that’s delivered to a users inbox – immediately. Right there, when they’re in the action, in the store, in the moment – using a product. The benefits of such a highly relevant email are limitless and brands that are just starting to experiment with these features are seeing both conversions and engagement rates skyrocket.

Stay In the Know with Gmail

Gmail is at the forefront of user email experience improvements and is currently the most closely watched webmail provider. With deliverability increasing in difficulty, ESP’s are looking at the bigger picture. Both security measures and interactivity play a large role in the deliverability matrix and any email changes from big players like Google raise eyebrows. Current and upcoming changes, like tallying user engagement and adding style and media query support, finally allows ESP’s to provide better experiences to Gmail users by creating unique and useful content. And also by staying in the know on all things Gmail.

Modern marketers that are at the forefront of these trends which, frankly, are responsible for human behavior, have a huge challenge ahead of them. As soon as they may begin to adapt to innovation, it’s not long before it gets as crowded as a beehive as other marketers start to follow hot trends. We see this happening all the time with technology advancements and shifts on key platforms like Facebook.

Here’s the good news though: 43% of marketers still don’t use responsive design (crazy, right?), only 4% of marketers use personalization, only 31% of retailers show recommended products in their emails and just 29% of retailers have implemented beacon/app technology. The companies that are leading with data, content and personalized campaign strategies are thinking 5 years ahead, and now is the time to hop on board!

Want more details on these exact trends and actionable email marketing tips and tricks? Download BlueHornet’s 2016 Email Marketing Trends whitepaper to skyrocket your sales figures by the end of the year.