Topic: Email Metrics and Reporting

content-is-kingHere are some key content statistics every content marketer needs to know. Let’s comb through some key statistics to shed some light on just how effective good content, especially visual content, really is.

“Drawing in leads is one thing, but getting the kind of engagement that leads to a conversion is where the action is at. Strong content is a leading driver in this area”

Video and e-mail marketing can increase click through rates by more than 90%. (Source: Mist Media)

Viewers are 85% more likely to purchase a product after watching a product video (Source: Captains of Industry)

90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual, and visuals are processed 60,000X faster in the brain than text. (Sources: 3M Corporation and Zabisco)

40% of people will respond better to visual information than plain text. (Source: Zabisco)

61% of shoppers prefer brands that offer custom content (Source: Captains of Industry)

46.1% of people say a website’s design is the number one criterion for discerning the credibility of the company. (Source: Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab)

Posts that include video attract 3 times more inbound links than plain text posts (Source: Captains of Industry)

Publishers who use infographics grow in traffic an average of 12% more than those who don’t. (Source: AnsonAlex)

Posts with videos attract 3 times more inbound links than plain text posts. (Source: SEOmoz)

Companies that blog at least 20 times a month generate 5 times more traffic and 4 times more leads than those who only blog a few times a month (Source: Captains of Industry)

Visual content drives engagement. In fact, just one month after the introduction of Facebook timeline for brands, visual content — photos and videos — saw a 65% increase in engagement. (Source: Simply Measured)

On Facebook, photos perform best for likes, comments, and shares as compared to text, video, and links. (Source: Dan Zarrella)

37% of Pinterest account holders log in a few times every week; 28% said they log in a few times a month; 15% log in once daily; 10% log in numerous times a day. (Source: PriceGrabber)

98% of people surveyed with a Pinterest account said they also have a Facebook and/or Twitter account (Source: PriceGrabber)

Pinterest generated more referral traffic for businesses than Google+, YouTube, and LinkedIn combined. (Source: Shareaholic)

Pinterest drives sales directly from its website — of people with Pinterest accounts, 21% have purchased an item after seeing it on Pinterest. (Source: PriceGrabber)

85% of the US internet audience watches videos online. The 25-34 age group watches the most online videos, and adult males spend 40% more time watching videos on the internet than females. (Sources: comScore and Nielsen)

Over 60 hours of videos are uploaded each minute on YouTube. (Source: YouTube)

700 YouTube videos are shared on Twitter every minute (Source: YouTube)

Viewers spend 100% more time on pages with videos on them. (Source: MarketingSherpa)

Mobile video viewing increased 35% from 2010 to 2011. (Source: Nielsen)

25 million smartphone users stream 4 hours of mobile video per month. 75% of smartphone users watch videos on their phones, 26% of whom use video at least once a day. (Sources: Ooyala and Ipsos)

Mobile video subscription is expected to hit $16 billion in revenue by 2014, with over 500 million subscribers. (Source: Ooyala)

Viewers are 85% more likely to purchase a product after watching a product video. (Source: Internet Retailer)

inactivesubscribersShould you re-engage inactive subscribers or remove them?

There is much discussion around about re-engaging inactive subscribers, but I wonder should it be more about keeping your subscribers engaged in the first place? As I have been taught many times in the past, work to keep you current customers first and look after them instead of always hunting for new ones and forgetting about the old ones – that only creates churn and a huge list attrition rate.

In a world where everyone is always talking about list growth, it’s not a pleasant concept to have to think about removing people off your list. Most of the time marketers just leave old emails and unengaged subscribers on their list and keep emailing them even if they have never opened the last 63 emails they received or clicked any links.

After that amount of time I think it would be fair to say that they would be considered an ‘inactive subscriber’ don’t you. So what’s the best way to deal with these unengaged subscribers?

The thing is engaged subscribers mean higher engagement rates and better reputation and better deliverability.  But the flow on effect runs much deeper than just ensuring you are capturing everyone, as engagement is one of the factors that influence your reputation, and therefore your deliverability.

The ISP’s do watch engagement levels, however the effects vary depending on your list size and how often you email. If just a few subscribers aren’t engaging and you have a large list and send frequently it’s unlikely that would affect your reputation. However if you have a smaller list you will probably want to look a bit closer.

The best course of action is to analyse your reporting, identify the inactive subscribers, and send a re-engagement campaign – and we have some good advice on how to do that.

One great example of a client who is doing that is Muchmore, who send re-engagement emails to individuals who have been inactive for just three emails. For many of you it may be fair to say you analyse inactive subscribers once a month or perhaps every six months. Have you ever analysed the reports for inactive or unengaged subscribers after just 3 sends? Perhaps it’s time you started.

Want to take an even more proactive approach? Send such effective emails you keep your subscribers engaged before they start wandering down that inactive cul-de-sac in the first place.

It has been said that ‘email is the Swiss Army knife of marketing’ and is one of the most widely used digital channels in your marketing arsenal. For most marketers, email costs the least but gives the greatest returns. Here are the top few reasons why email is still king.

blogImg_emailWinning

Email is the workhorse of your digital marketing program
One of the greatest things about email is its versatility; that ability for it to reach your customers and drive traffic to your other channels such as your website and social network profiles. It really integrates your channels together. It also wins terms of increasing ROI by utilising it for triggered emails such as welcoming new customers, processing purchases, and all those other good things. I don’t know of any other channel that does that.

Email is like Madonna – it keeps reinventing itself
You can’t beat email for its ability to reinvent itself, to be a platform that can constantly be updated, upgraded, re-designed, re-coded, optimised, and inte­grate with other technologies and channels as they appear.  Look at how email is adapting to HTML and video in email for example, and how already people are seeing an increase in engagement and higher ROI as a result.

Email can actually prove it’s worth to you
For all those data and analysis nerds, you will appreciate one of the best things about the email channel is that you can easily see exactly how your emails are performing, and you can prove your email marketing ROI to management through all the reporting and analytics that are available. After all shiny new apps are neat but at the end of the day what will be appreciated by the keepers of the budget is what really provides returns and value.

Email is still leagues ahead of social media
The report by Custora sheds some light on what is really shaping e-Commerce and Digital Marketing. And the results are quite clear - email still has a massive lead beyond the other channels and is still providing the highest value.

There you have it. Email remains the most effective way to deliver your message, it’s the #1 activity on all smartphones and tablets, it drives the most conversions and consumer purchases more than any other marketing channel, and it’s the preferred communication stream for consumers.

Here at Jericho we really can’t stress enough how beneficial an effective email marketing program is to your business.

Want 11 more reasons why email is so great?

 

 

 

Did you know, a whopping 65 percent of email recipients engage with promotional email in the afternoons and evenings.

conversion-time-of-day-retention-2013
Yet according to a recent report by Retention Science, marketers tend to send emails in the morning.  Well that seems a bit crazy doesn’t it. Why are marketers mostly sending their promotional emails in the morning, when customers are in a buying mood in the afternoon? This means all your beautiful promotional marketing emails are arriving when the consumers are not in the right mind set and have other things on their mind …. This is a seriously big gap between when marketers are sending emails and when they are read, so I think this is is in dire need of a rethink.

Email-Conversion-Rates-Day-of-Week-300x263

So now we know, best time of day to send promotional emails is the afternoon. What about the best days for conversions?  Retention Science advises that emails sent on Tuesdays and Fridays get the most conversions, with 28% on Tuesdays, and 26% on Fridays. Surprisingly Saturday is the lowest performing day of the week with just 3% conversions, Sunday isn’t much better with just 6%.

Hmmm… time for a review of your weekly email marketing activity? Email us!

 

http://www.marketingprofs.com/charts/2013/11894/the-best-days-and-times-for-promotional-email-conversions?adref=nl102313

Experian Marketing Services, a global provider of integrated consumer insight, targeting and cross channel marketing, reveals that if the time spent on the Internet for personal computers was distilled into an hour then 27 percent of it would be spent on social networking and forums across US, UK and Australia, and 23 percent of total US mobile internet time is spent reading and writing emails.

Online Browsing
In the US, 16 minutes out of every hour online is spent on social networking, nine minutes on entertainment sites, five minutes shopping and three minutes on email. For comparison, in the UK 13 minutes out of every hour online is spent on social networking, nine minutes on entertainment sites, and six minutes shopping.  Australian Internet users spend 14 minutes on social sites, nine on entertainment and four minutes shopping online.

Click on image to see full size graph

 

Mobile Browsing
If we analyse US browsing data for mobile devices, email accounts for the largest time spent on average –  specifically speaking, email makes up 23 percent of time spent on mobile devices, followed by social networking at 15 percent. Entertainment had the third highest time spent with 13 percent, then shopping with 11 percent.

 


Source

Customer acquisition via email has quadrupled over the past 4 years according to the recent Custora eCommerce Customer Acquisition Snapshot Report.

The last few years have seen huge changes in the world of Digital Marketing, and Email Marketing has been a consistently growing and ever more popular channel, with ever increasing numbers of retailers and marketers turning to email to promote list growth, share information, market sales, and more.

The report is an effort to reflect this constantly changing landscape and shed some light on what is really shaping e-Commerce and Digital Marketing. The graph below highlights the massive lead that email has beyond the other channels. Second only to organic search, I think it’s safe to say email is still winning this one.

 

AcquisitionChannelGrowthsml

Acquisition Channel Growth
(Click on graph to view full size)

Customer Lifetime value  (CLV) in this report refers to the future profit a company expects to earn from a customer through their relationship with the business. As we can see in the below graph, Email provides the third highest value out of all channels, again only behind organic search.

CustomerValuebyChannelsml

Customer Lifetime Value by Channel
(Click on graph to see full size)

 

Although I wouldn’t discount the value of social yet I do however think those mailing lists and the value of email is going to trump other digital channels for some time yet.

Consumers are flocking to online video, watching more than four billion videos on YouTube each day. Among 18- to 34-year-olds, smartphones now match desktops and laptops as a video delivery device, facilitating the ability to stream video in email and other message formats.

With consumer adoption of video so high, more marketers are beginning to distribute videos through email, which is still the most popular communication channel.

To date, there have been few solutions available for embedding video in email marketing messages, so adoption has been relatively lo,  however recent changes in some email software clients now make it possible to play videos directly within an email.

The Relevancy Group recently surveyed 266 email marketing executives and found that 25 percent of email marketers are currently using video in their email marketing messages.

This level of adoption of video in emails highlights the increased in email software and mobile email browsers now offering video solutions, and the use of HTML 5 is making video streaming ubiquitous. It is still not available across the board yet however so when the video is incapable of playing in the email software, you should always add a link to view the video on a website.

Adoption of Video in Email Set to Increase

81 percent of the email marketers surveyed said that they are “very likely” or “somewhat likely” to utilise video in future email marketing efforts. Marketers are particularly optimistic regarding video because it has proven to capture the subscriber’s attention, drive engagement, and increase ROI.

Video in Email Increases Engagement, Social Sharing, and Conversion

Video and images have proven to capture the subscriber’s attention, drive engagement, and increase ROI.

It may seem a bit obvious to state that including video and images in emails make them more engaging, but it’s worth re-iterating. Some of the best email campaigns I’ve seen come into my inbox recently include GIF’s, images or video. They are the ones in my memory weeks later.

Video connects people to your message quickly, as they are easy to understand and have a more instant emotional impact than text or static images. But in order to grab a user’s attention and convince them to take action, the video must captivate and activate during the first five seconds.

Video in email boosts revenue

When comparing the performance metrics of emails which include video to those who do not, emails that include video had a much higher ROI (10% higher) than those that didn’t.  The marketers employing video in their emails are reporting higher delivery rates, open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates.

Benefits of including video in email:
Increased click-through rates: 55 percent of marketers report increased click-through rates in emails sent with video as compared to emails without video.
Increased engagement: 44 percent of marketers report that consumers spend more time viewing emails that contain video versus emails without video.
Increased advocacy and sharing: 41 percent state that their emails with video were shared and forwarded more than emails without video.
Increased conversion and dollars: 25 percent of marketers report increases in conversion, sales and ROI for email marketing messages with videos.

The Technical Bit

To implement your own successful video-in-email marketing solution, make sure you use software that supports HTML5 for the deployment of any emails that contain video to ensure that the video plays within the email client. This improves the compatibility of the video in the email, and enables playback across a variety of email client software. Be aware that most desktop and webmail email clients still don’t support automatic video playback within emails so be aware for those on your list who read their emails in desktop email clients such as Outlook, you will still need to place an image of the video within the email and host the actual video on a website and link to it. This is still a great strategy as the call to action increases clickthroughs.

The Bottom Line

With all this in mind, emails video really does show a tremendous return on investment and is one of the most effective and powerful ways to create engagement in your email campaigns.

PRO TIP: To increase sharing and engagement further, always include the ability to share the email content to all the subscribers social networks and include links to your companies social profiles.

As smartphone and tablet usage continues to grow, mobile has become an absolutely crucial part of email marketing strategy and with email opens steadily increasing on mobile devices this has become more pertinent than ever.

Especially now that according to Experian Marketing Services’ (EMS) Quarterly Email Benchmark Study Q2 2013 half of subscribers open their emails on a mobile device ONLY, compared to 23 percent on desktop-only and webmail-only. ”With mobile devices now crossing the 50 percent of unique opens, marketers must bring device optimisation to the forefront of their email marketing campaigns,” says Bill Tancer, General Manager at EMS.

The EMS report reveals that merely one percent of opens went to the non-mobile group (Other), in which subscribers used both webmail and desktop, and that just three percent of subscribers opened emails on all of these three platforms, with at least one open on a mobile device (mobile-combo). In spite of the small number of email opens in the ‘mobile-combo’ and ‘other ‘categories, these two see the highest engagement rates, highest click-to-open rates, and are also considered more profitable than the other platform types.

 

 

A look further into the increasing impact of mobile devices shows that iPhone was the leading mobile device for opens and clicks, whereas iPad was dominant when it comes to transactions and shopping, and both Apple products put Android at a distant third in all areas. Nevertheless, Android still plays an important role in email marketing and Bill Tancer, General Manager at EMS advises that “While Apple products ranked high for both mobile and tablet metrics, marketers must consider both iOS and Android in their mobile email marketing strategy”

So seeing as mobile opens have now crossed the 50% mark and there are just a couple of month’s to go before the holiday season,  with email still being the biggest driver of sales and revenue, what is your mobile email marketing strategy?

I have been reading about the new digital divide between those who own smartphones and those who don’t, and those who have access to broadband, and WIFI, and those who don’t.  Today we look at another digital divide that is occurring – the divide between consumers behaviour on desktop and mobile, and the way marketers are responding to that behaviour.

Mobile, defined as smartphone and tablet usage, has grown significantly in the last few years and is no longer a marketing phenomenon but a prominent fixture in the way consumers interact with brands. However, as mobile continues to grow and becomes a primary mode of email consumption, it remains a puzzle for many marketers.

Just how big is this mobile thing? Well apparently by the end of June 2013 over 70 percent of all activity on Facebook and Twitter was on a mobile device. There are in excess of 219 million mobile-only users on Facebook and this segment is growing by 30 million a quarter! So how about your emails? As consumers integrate smartphones more and more into their lifestyle, and check their emails throughout the day on their mobile device, they are moving away from viewing email exclusively on desktop. Subscribers respond via the most convenient device at the time they receive the message, regardless of device preference. In fact, 61% of users view emails either exclusively on a mobile device or use mobile and desktop interchangeably.

According to Yesmail’s ‘Email Marketing Compass – The Mobile Effect‘ report which was released recently, 61% of consumers are now viewing email either exclusively on a mobile device or using BOTH mobile and desktop devices interchangeably.  What is interesting is that while 49% of email opens happen on a mobile device, the click-to-open (CTO) rate on mobile is significantly lower than desktop’s 21%. What’s interesting is consumers open emails on their mobile device half of the time, but do not take any action. However when consumers open the same email on desktop, they engage and open then at a much higher rate. This significant difference between mobile and desktop click-to-open rates suggests a disconnect between the way marketers cater to consumers who open on mobile vs. those who prefer desktop.

Michael Fisher, president of Yesmail Interactive says “While it may not be surprising that more consumers are opening promotional emails on mobile devices, it is surprising that these consumers are less likely to actually click through those emails. And it is not news that marketers should be increasing their mobile marketing efforts, but what is often overlooked is that reaching consumers via mobile is useless if they’re not reacting”

I think it’s safe to say that mobile-first must become your focus. And ours – while our client’s emails are all tested and designed to look great on mobile our own websites are lagging (and currently being optimised!) as you can see from the slightly embarrassing comment on this blog post!

Social is mobile. Email is mobile. Digital is mobile. Put down your copy of the yellow pages and your brick cellphone. Welcome to the mobile age.

For more on mobile,  see our other blog posts here.

 

I heard something the other day that struck me – someone said their customer service rep ‘put a personal face on a big corporation’.  It made me consider the journey that many organisations take from being small and therefore personal, to greater success and towards the cliche of the big faceless corporation, at which point they see the need to do a full circle right back to providing the personal touch.   Because to your customer, that is all that matters – that personal service. That friendly human face that actually talks to you, helps you, and most of all provides value. That face is often perceived as being ‘your company’ -not your building – not your logo – that personal face. And it is often the difference between a happy customer and no customer.

Being personal applies to every single business and every single industry. People love personalised service, even in this digital world. And email gets closer to people than many other digital channels, via what comes into their inbox.  When you send an email to anyone’s inbox, you are in the ‘golden circle’ of their life, along with emails from friends and family…. it’s like you have just walked into their house and they are having a family party when you arrive. This could be awkward…

So are you going to butt-in and start pitching to them? Only to have them ‘delete’ you and kick you out? Or are you going to be friendly and relevant to them and actually join in the conversation and provide some value to them? You know the correct answer. You know that friend that always comes around and just sits there and helps themselves to your food and your TV then expects you to be grateful to them for their mere presence? I bet you know some emails like that.

Now how about that friend that comes in when they are invited, when you said it’s OK to visit, and they bring your favourite cookies because you told them and they remembered. While they are visiting they also give you some tips, do your dishes and give you some discounts for something you really wanted. Maybe they even tell some jokes and make you laugh. Well obviously that friend is welcome any time! Just imagine if you do your email marketing like that, how much your subscribers would love you.

Well we have an example of an email from a company in New Zealand called Pixel Paint who do just that. Who? Pixel Paint is a canvas printing company based in Wellington and they send the most humorous, friendly emails ever. This month they sent an email out with the subject line ‘We love you so much we made you a mix tape…’ with a link to a retro music mix tape they made on Sound Cloud for their subscribers, just so they didn’t have to endure certain music on the radio. Then they added at the bottom ‘PS – if you want to buy a canvas click here’.  Wow talk about feeling the love from a company who has just gone the extra mile to do something for me. I instantly love these guys. Click on the email and check it out.

Once you have had a look at that awesome email, let’s go back a bit for a second. Email can get technical and can seem like it’s all about metrics, engagement, segmentation, dynamic content, setting up rules, looking at data, vlookups,  exporting reports….. and all that isn’t much ‘fun’ (Unless you are email geeks like us at Jericho) and like housework it’s not the most glamorous part, however, these are all important facets of email marketing and they must be done. Then, when all that foundation work is done, bring the personal side back in. Be human, be personable. Mix up the flavour of your emails and inject some humour into them. The age of using an overly formal corporate voice has gone and we are now all speaking to people in a more natural way.

I love the emails that arrive when I have told them to, I love the emails that open with a funny pre-header or intro, and who use a funny, friendly tone of language. I love those emails that include a pop culture reference, or a joke, or a nice story. Mainly I love those emails that give me my favourite cookies – the products I like and that I’ve told them I like. I love the emails that help me clean and give me advise while they are visiting – that could be anything from whitepapers, to industry advise, discounts, content no-one has seen before… I love these emails and I look forward to them arriving in my inbox. Every single day.

Real-life-humans operate your website, your social media and your email marketing so why not just act like it and embrace the personal, customer-centered focus. Now before you start dropping meme’s into your legal newsletter, we are not saying turn from corporate communication to young funky start-up just to try and be cool all of a sudden. It needs to be done in a way that is genuine and relevant to your company.  If you are a  young funky company like our example Pixel Paint, then you can take this humour and friendliness a lot further than some other companies potentially could.

The moral of this story is if you have made it as far as the inbox, you may as well be a good friend to your subscriber – add value, provide content they will appreciate, send emails your subscribers will look forward to, and they will love you.

Here is a Case Study by Marketing Sherpa that shows how http://www.marketingsherpa.com/article/case-study/e-commerce-eco-friendly-email-content