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BizReport : Email Marketing : March 14, 2016

Expert: Why strong CRM, email still perform for brands

Most marketers have become learned everything that glitters doesn't necessarily convert. That is one reason so many continue to turn to email and CRM to engage consumers. According to Kissmetrics, email conversions continue to be about 40 times higher than either Facebook or Twitter. How can CRM and email work for you?

by Kristina Knight

Kristina: CRM and email aren't the newest, but they continue to perform well. What is driving their use?

Cynthia Price, Vice President of Marketing, Emma: Modern marketers don't want a one-trick pony. They're looking for tools that perform well on their own, but also play well with others. Two great things about these "old-school" marketing tools is that not only have they weathered the rise of countless new technologies, such as instant messaging, SMS, social media and collaboration apps, they've also evolved to work with those other tools along the way. For instance, many CRMs integrate with email marketing platforms to support email automation, and social media can easily be integrated into your email strategy through things like live social feeds, user-generated content and social sharing buttons.

Kristina: What trends are you seeing in email marketing currently?

Cynthia: One of the biggest, and arguably most important, trends in email continues to be an intense focus on personalization. When email marketing first rose in popularity, everyone's inboxes quickly became crowded with irrelevant content. It wasn't that marketers were trying to spam their subscribers; it was just that the difficulty of discovering their preferences and interests made email best practices like segmentation a heck of a lot harder than they are today.

Now, subscribers expect every email message they receive to be super relevant and personalized, and if that's not the case, they won't hesitate to ignore you, or worse, unsubscribe. Thankfully, data analysis is so much easier, and many email providers offer performance metrics within their platforms. It takes the guesswork out of email, so marketers no longer have an excuse to blindly blast their entire audience.

Kristina: What about newer content - like video, memes and GIFs?

Cynthia: We're seeing brands experimenting with more engaging content in their email campaigns. Using GIFs, video and dynamic content in your emails encourages click-throughs and adds an element of surprise to your messages. For example, Wistia found that adding video to email content can increase click rates by 300%!

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: content trends, CRM strategy, email marketing, email trends, Emma

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