Technology | Media | Telecommunications

Saturday, April 03, 2010

E-mail Marketing is Making Social Connections


eMarketer reports that in 2009 e-mail marketers started to get social, but 2010 will be the year social media makes e-mail marketing more powerful. Social media is a complement to e-mail marketing, because it provides new avenues for sharing and engaging customers and prospects.

"Even though people are spending more time using social media, they are not abandoning e-mail," said Debra Aho Williamson, eMarketer senior analyst. "The two channels can help each other, offering the opportunity for marketers to create deeper connections."

More than four in 10 business executives surveyed by StrongMail said integrating e-mail and social was one of their most important initiatives for 2010 -- just after improving e-mail performance and targeting and growing opt-in lists.

About one-quarter of respondents had already implemented an integrated strategy, and another 24 percent had formulated a strategy and were researching how to put it in practice. But 18 percent wanted to add social components to their e-mail campaigns and did not know where to begin.

So far, the consensus of the value social media adds to e-mail marketing has been in the area of softer metrics. Four-fifths (81 percent) of marketers surveyed by MarketingSherpa in summer 2009 said social media helped to expand the reach of their e-mail content.

A further 78 percent said social media marketing helped to increase brand awareness.

But, the fact that so many are unsure about lead generation represents an opportunity for e-mail marketing firms to extend lead-generation measurement techniques into social media.