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BizReport : Email Marketing : August 31, 2011

Lyris: 8 trends that will change email

Email has been an evolving medium since the Internet began, and yet with the advent of the social and mobile categories, email has seen a resurgence of sorts. Too many brands aren't updating their email, strategies, however, which is harming their bottom line. A new whitepaper from Lyris sheds light on eight pivotal email trends.

by Kristina Knight

Most surprising, says Tina Stewart, Senior Vice President of Marketing with Lyris, is the quick rise of social gaming as a marketing tool. Brands are finding they can build loyalty as well as brand advocacy through gamification. But, more than gaming, is mobile, which will become huge over the next year or so.

"Based on the report, we are expecting to see an even greater need to incorporate mobile and social media with email marketing," said Stewart. "The number of smartphones in the hands of consumers and number of social media users is only going to rise. We also expect location-based marketing to drive much of the future of email marketing. Email campaigns that offer incentives to customers based on location are able connect customers with brands in real-time and deliver value when they're most receptive."

For the remainder of 2011, especially the crucial holiday shopping period, Stewart believes social channels will have a big impact. From learning to integrate email and social, the inclusion of social sharing tools within messages and the need to build loyalty outside an email list.

"This holiday season will bring a new wave of what I call "surround sound" marketing. When email is combined with social media, there's significant potential for a "word of mouth" multiplier effect and I think we'll see this in full force as we approach the holidays," said Stewart.

And, finally, the so-called social inbox, which is the integration of social sharing tools within email messages.

"In terms of ROI, marketers (and the tools we use) are increasingly savvy at measuring ROI, particularly when it relates to social," said Stewart. "I believe retailers (those who do it right) will see a significant boost from the integration between social and email. As a result, marketers will be able to show the return on investment of their social campaigns, which will, in turn, make a powerful case for integrating social and email into all their campaigns moving forward."

Tags: email marketing, email messages, email trends, Lyris, social marketing, social sharing

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