The From Line

Sending, Managing & Monetizing Email

Trend: Email Deliverability Rates Becoming Stagnant: How To Beat The Priority Inbox

Despite enormous efforts on the part of marketers, email deliverability rates have halted after the first half of 2011, coming in at 81%, according to a study released on September 20th by Return Path. 

Although reasons for this are numerous and often situational, a certain amount of blame in this case can be placed on “priority inbox”. This lovely little tool, created last year by Google, essentially puts a brain within your email account. It sees and records every action and configures message placement accordingly. So what we’re seeing are high reported delivery rates that don’t necessarily reflect the number of messages actually delivered. Technically the provider may have accepted it, but it doesn’t mean it’s landed in the customers’ inbox.

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Trend: Location Based Services-We want it here and we want it now.

28% of Americans are using mobile and social location based services for everything from driving directions to dinner reservations.

I must say I was surprised to read that only a quarter of us are gathering information through location based searches, mostly because I cannot imagine a day where I myself could be without that mobile connection. Personal preference aside, consumer usage of LBS’s is on the rise. We can now accomplish just about anything as long as we have a cell signal or wifi. Essentially we have been afforded the opportunity to be mobile powerhouses on a hyper local level. I can get step by step directions to that obscure sushi joint for a business lunch and locate the closest pharmacy that carries a very specific flavor of Tums, all while booking a romantic ski getaway, complete with nightly dinner reservations. And that was just between metro stops. Consumers are becoming increasingly needy and will continue to interact with LBS’s that play to that trait. It is no longer enough to base purchasing decisions off testimonial information. We want the best of the best, that’s right down the block, and we want it discounted.

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Trend: Facebook Fatigue Setting In

Platform extensions are more critical to social media than the sites themselves.

Facebook FatigueSocial media’s super growth cannot continue to defy the laws of physics forever. The time has come for fatigue to set in. According to the GlobalWebIndex Wave 5 Trends report, social media growth has essentially halted amongst 16 to 24-year-olds in the US. Even more surprising, in some countries, social media usage within this demographic is actively declining. The GlobalWebIndex report cites, among others, the following declines in social media activities from July 2009 through June 2011: messaging with friends, sending digital gifts, installing applications and joining groups. These activities are decreasing faster in the US than in other countries, and are doing so at an accelerated rate among American college graduates under the age of 30. The report also revealed an increased demand for professionally developed content including news sources, music and brand information.

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Trend: Marketers Using The Social Graph In Email

IEmail And Social Mediancreasing Email Relevancy with Social Data
Email and social media share one very important characteristic: both are fundamentally permission based. Just as an email opt-in box opens the communication channel between business and consumer, so too does a “follow”, “like”, “pin” or other social sign-on. This combination of permission and social data is prompting savvy email marketers to extend the social experience from websites to the inbox. They are realizing, however, that the process of incorporating social data into email goes beyond traditional segmentation. It includes the placement of social relationships, demographics, and behavioral information like check-ins and tags within the actual email. For example, a message might display which friends commented on a certain article, liked an item, or checked-in at a store location. This type of integration in email requires a little finesse, because as with anything social, privacy remains the biggest barrier to including such data.
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Trend: HTML 5 Gaining Momentum On Mobile & Email Platforms

HTML 5 and Email MarketingFor the widest audience reach, HTML 5 is your best bet.

Normally in Trends & Takeaways, we don’t discuss geeky technology topics. After all, this is a marketing blog. However, HTML 5 is emerging as a technology that marketers need to be mindful of when developing mobile and email strategies. HTML 5 has been around since 2009, and is the Web’s 5th generation markup language. Only recently, however, has the standard become widely adopted. In particular, this new markup language includes features to handle multimedia and graphical content on the web without the need for proprietary plugins such as Flash.

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The Email Monetization Playbook
Email Monetization Playbook
69 Must Scan Pages For Publishers!

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Email Monetization Playbook
69 Must Scan Pages For Publishers!