Email Marketing: the guide to trends and strategies for 2022

email marketing trends 2022Blogpost cover 80

And so this is Christmas, and what have you done?” sang John Lennon, and we are sure that for email marketing insiders the answer is “a lot!”. 

Let’s leave another year, 2021, characterized like the previous one by the Coronavirus pandemic that despite the positive developments of the vaccination campaigns continues to affect our daily life and social and work activities, but with a new normal that we have become accustomed to knowing. 

Email marketing is becoming more and more part of a complex and articulated landscape, which it is good to summarize in its present to understand its evolutions and the best strategies to implement it in the future. 

The digital landscape: a look back to 2021

The digital trends that had characterized 2020 have also been confirmed for 2021, making definitive some paradigms that until a year ago only began their ascent. Especially:

  • E-commerce maintains its growth values. In 2020, retail e-commerce sales worldwide amounted to 4.28 trillion US dollars and e-retail revenues are projected to grow to 5.4 trillion US dollars in 2022. Online shopping is one of the most popular online activities worldwide.
    Despite the fact that physical stores have been able to resume their activities by returning to the pre-covid rhythms, in fact, we continue to buy in virtual form thanks to increasingly faster deliveries, increasingly user-friendly interfaces that also bring closer to higher age groups, and the gradual increase in the digital skills of companies.

ecommerce sales world wide

  • World’s digital population is continuously growing. 4.88 billion people around the world use the internet in October 2021 – that’s almost 62 percent of the world’s total population. This number is still growing too, with latest data showing that 222 million new users came online over the past twelve months. What is emerging is a society dictated by the spasmodic consumption of content in a mainly passive way (only 12% of the audience of the social world declares to personally create content, while for 48% it uses without interacting).

Utilizzo dispositivi mobile

  • The undisputed power of mobile is confirmed. 5.22 billion people use a mobile phone today, equating to 66.6 percent of the world’s total population. Unique mobile users have grown by 1.8 percent (93 million) since January 2020, while the total number of mobile connections has increased by 72 million (0.9 percent) to reach a total of 8.02 billion at the start of 2021.
  • Communication has seen the transition from multichannel to cross-channel. Users interact simultaneously from different devices, at different stages of the sales funnel. It becomes impossible for brands to distinguish consumer needs based on standardized variables.

Even the email marketing sector has seen new trends and dynamics settle in this year that is about to end. Even though what we are entering is a digital landscape increasingly crowded with new channels, email marketing maintains its position as a preferred means of communication between brands and consumers.

email users worldwide

First, the number of active users with an email address continues to grow, and the trend does not seem destined to change for the next few years.

The pandemic, moreover, as we know, has meant for many people the use of remote work, or smart working, which in many cases has translated into a hyper-connection. It has been seen, in fact, that 40% of those who work at least partially from home struggle to disconnect much more than those who are in the office. 

This has consequently led to an increase in the time that each person spends on their inbox, and a greater number of emails sent and received is recorded. This figure is also expected to grow in the coming years.

graphic users email world

In short, the conditions for email marketing to remain a central channel within an omnichannel strategy for 2022 are all there. However, the old integration strategies are now becoming obsolete, or must at least be implemented to be able to achieve good results in the future. Because even this sector, in line with the entire digital sector, has undergone changes over the last year.

Email marketing: what 2021 leaves us

Privacy

The watchword if we talk about revolutions in the field of email marketing in 2021 is definitely: privacy. 

The increased use and an increasing familiarity and awareness of the dynamics related to online advertising, users have also become more aware of the value and use of their data 

Perhaps because they have arrived, as claimed by several marketers, at the saturation point where advertisements bombard and crowd any digital platform, from social media to the web, perhaps because spending more time online users notice more than before the actual exposure they offer to brands. In any case, everyone is realizing how valuable the information of each of us is. And Big names in the sector have taken action to respond to this new need for greater privacy on the part of the market. 

In July 2021, in fact, on the Worldwide Developer Conference, Apple announced the release of its update for IOS15 and the related Mail Privacy ProtectionThe release, in essence, allows users to hide their location, their IP address, and to hide the data of opening / reading emails through the automatic download of the tracking pixel.

messaggio-mail-privacy-protection

In short, as Apple devices download the update and activate the ID masking option, brands will presumably have more inaccurate open rates (since emails that are not actually opened will also be read), reduced geolocations, and all the related problems that these two metrics entails (automations, local advertising…).

Safety

We have already said that one of the great trends that has characterized this 2021 has been the exponential increase in e-commerce. On the bright side, many more companies have seized the opportunity to explore the digital marketplace, and consumers have the option of a wide choice of products without moving from their homes.  

However, not all that glitters is gold. With the increase in virtual transactions, in fact, phishing phenomena have also increased. It is estimated that since the beginning of the pandemic, online data theft has grown by 15%. 

To try to counter illegal activities and defend consumers from scams, more and more companies have begun to support transactions with two-factorauthentication, a method of identity verification that allows you to authenticate through two factors: a password and an OTP code  (One Time Password) that has a temporary duration. 

sicurezza dispositivi mobile

 

Email is one of the most used channels along with SMS for this type of “proof of identity”. Moreover, thanks to the increasing use of security protocols (DMARK, SPF, DKI) and increasingly stringent anti-spam controls, emails are gaining more and more authority in the eyes of users, becoming in effect a preferential channel.

Email marketing: trends and strategies for  2022

We’ve seen the state of the art of email marketing in 2021. Now we can focus on the next step: what to expect from this channel for the months to come, and what are the best strategies to best react to the next changes?

1. Centrality of content

Content is king! (Always and forever, amen) The best way to make yourself heard (or rather, read) by your users is to send personalized, interesting, and valid content. Do not copy here and there, avoid the usual “catchy phrases” (a bombshell offer, an opportunity that you can not miss) and create an editorial plan for your newsletters, which alternates commercial content (promotions, offers, discounts) with storytelling content of your brand, which improve the brand awareness and increase the perceived value of customers towards your products or services.

2. Stop vanity metrics

2021 marks a turning point in the use of vanity metrics in email marketing. Mail Privacy Protection will make indicators such as open rates that for years have been considered one of the main indicators of the good performance of a campaign much less accurate, and therefore less valid. 

Realizing that we will no longer be able to know for sure how many people open our emails, initially could worry us. But let’s try to think: really everyone who opens a newsletter enjoys it and understands the contents? Is all really lost as far as the world of statistics of our email marketing campaigns is concerned? The answer is obviously no. 

In 2022 it will be necessary to change the paradigm and start evaluating your campaigns through new metrics, less “ephemeral” and more concrete. Clicks on links or images, visits to the site or e-commerce in relation to automations, these types of metrics give you certain information about your audience and allow you to recognize users really interested in your communications.

3. Omnichannel

It is already present, but it will continue to be also in the future: the user journey officially becomes   fluid and omnichannel, the interaction with the user takes place through different channels and within the same customer journey. Therefore, it is no longer possible to think of basing one’s communication strategy on a single channel, and above all not relating and combining each of them so that it participates in a coordinated way to maximize the user experience. 

Email marketing remains one of the most effective channels to consider. Make it communicate with your other channels, such as setting up automations that maximize your ecommerce revenue, or buttons for sharing on social media within your campaigns. You can also integrate your email marketing strategy with an SMS marketing strategy and take advantage of the benefits of mobile messaging: reading times within 3 minutes of sending, over 98% of readings, and the ability of SMS to be versatile and interactive. 

4. Maximize the mobile experience

The type of device from which your users read your emails directly affects the quality of content consumption. Just look at the statistics section of your email sending platform to realize that a good chunk of your readers use their smartphone to read your communications, so it’s important that your emails are responsive and adapted to a mobile view. 

Our Multichannel Platform  allows you to do this activity without the need for special knowledge of usability or design. It offers you the possibility to see a preview of what the view of your users will be, with the different email clients and on the different models of mobile devices.

mobile responsive

5. Interactivity

We are in the age of engagement metrics. Users of digital content want increasingly interesting and interactive content, which transforms the user experience from passive to active and that makes people feel an integral part of the brands they follow. Use your email marketing campaigns to interact with your customers, create surveys, landing pages with extra content, video interviews, giveaways, contests. 

In short, it implements gamification activities. Make people feel part of what you do and try to create a real community.  

 

Do you want to start 2022 with us? If you think you need support in defining effective email marketing strategies, write to us for a chat at support@rdcom.com  or call us at +39 045.8841199. Start with the foot, or rather the right button!