Editor’s Note: This post originally ran on the MarketingExperiments blog as “Email Marketing: 4 data points to help you build the case for a bigger budget in 2016.” Hear author Dan Burstein and fellow MECLABS email expert Ben Filip speak on the All About Email Virtual Conference on Thursday, Nov. 12.
As we get towards the end of the year, it’s time for B-to-C marketers to make last-minute tweaks to drive holiday sales and B-to-B marketers to get those last few, really high-quality leads that will hopefully close in fiscal year 2015.
But don’t overlook another important date that is coming up on the calendar as well — January 1, 2016. The day that 2016 budgets kick in for many marketers.
To help you win the email marketing budget you need to be successful in 2016, here are a few key data points that you can drop into your proposal or presentation.
Data Point 1: Customers Want Email
According to a 2015 study of 2,057 American consumers by MarketingSherpa (MarketingExperiments’ sister publishing brand), customers want email. When asked “In which of the following ways, if any, would you prefer companies to communicate with you?,” 72 percent of consumers chose email, by far the most popular response. Postal mail was a distant second with 48 percent of respondents.
Not only do customers want email, but this was true for all age groups we surveyed. Email was the most frequent response in every age group (for Americans 65 and older, postal mail tied email for the top spot).
Data Point 2: Your Competitors Are Using Email
At the MarketingSherpa Media Center at &THEN, the DMA’s annual event, I asked Thorin McGee, Editor-in-Chief, Target Marketing magazine, about the state of email marketing.
I am presenting one of the sessions during Target Marketing’s 2015 All About eMail Virtual Conference & Expo about the strategic formula for email conversion success and using testing to optimize your email program (more on testing in Data Point 4), so I knew Thorin would have some key takeaways about email marketing at the ready for an off-the-cuff conversation.
The most interesting piece of data Thorin shared in our conversation came from Target Marketing’s Media Usage Survey 2015.
“We do our own media usage survey every year. And I’ve written it personally for the last five years. And every year I’ve done it, email has been the most used marketing channel among our readers,” Thorin said.
“It’s also been the one seeing the highest level of spending growth. Which is a little strange when you think about it because for five consecutive years, how could the same channel, one, be used by 96 percent of our readers, and two, still be seeing higher budgets year over year?”
Near universal usage of email marketing paired with ever-increasing budgets? To see why I think this is possible, let’s take a look at Data Point 3.
Data Point 3: Email Generates an ROI
Marketers continue to win more budget for email marketing because it has a pretty impressive ROI.
The exact number varies based on where you look. The DMA has one of the most-quoted numbers I’ve seen about email marketing ROI — that it generated $43.52 for every dollar invested. But this well-known number is from 2009.
Daniel Burstein is the Senior Director, Content and Marketing at MECLABS Institute. Daniel oversees all content and marketing coming from the MarketingExperiments and MarketingSherpa brands while helping to shape the marketing direction for MECLABS — digging for actionable discoveries while serving as an advocate for the audience.