It wouldn’t be January without predictions for the new year would it? Here is my take on what email marketing trends we can expect to see in 2016.
1. Personalisation not segmentation
Hopefully, 2016 will be the year we arrive at a definition of personalisation. In my mind, personalisation in the context of email marketing is about completely bespoke, unique, relevant content for the individual. Too often this is confused with either merging in a name or segmentation. Segmentation is about which message to send, not what to include in the email. And for email to fulfil its potential, both need to be present and not simply slightly less generic messages in a handful of segments.
2. Mobile is the norm
We might already be here with many email marketers obsessing about mobile. However, it’s not just the design on mobile devices, but also thinking about the context of the email. This makes email far more immediate, and in a way, more throwaway as if you’re too busy when it lands on your phone, then it’s likely to be forgotten. 2016 could well be the year when marketers find more strategies such as resends and timings to cater for the changing nature of email on mobile devices.
3. Frequency will rise…
More and more marketers are starting to realise a high frequency of emails isn’t all bad. Yes, open rate will go down, unsubscribe up and overall engagement flag, but simply reducing the frequency doesn’t see an overall improvement for most. Instead, the benefits of sending more emails usually outweigh the downsides.
4. Death to the text version
Who still gets emails in text format? The smartphone is helping to kill this off for good and save marketers time and hassle by bothering with a text version. Where we might see an increase in this, however, is with marketers who switch to simple, personalised emails which appear from real individuals to counteract the fatigue seen in yet another HTML marketing email arriving from you.
5. Spam & deliverability isn’t an issue anymore
If you are a spammer then it will always be a problem getting emails into the inbox. But genuine well behaved marketers will no longer have to concern themselves with so many of the intricacies of deliverability, giving them one less thing to worry about. Why? The email landscape of filters and webmail providers are getting better and better all the time at knowing what is spam, and what is legitimate.