Email Marketing: What Counts Summer Summit
In a month from now (August 4-5th), there’s going to be a conference in Seattle about Email Marketing. The event is being put on by What Counts and is called Summer Summit. I looked at the agenda and I am very interested in hearing the “State of the Union” address about where the State of the Email Industry is. The founder and CEO of What Counts is David Geller and the President is Brian Ratzliff. I used to work with both David and Brian back at Starwave. I’m very interested to hear from them and the other industry experts on this topic. In my opinion, there seems to be so much emphasis on social media, Twitter, Facebook, customer engagement it seems like people are forgetting about email marketing. What I’m hoping to learn is to find out how email is evolving, what are the new cutting edge ideas on how best to use email in conjunction with these other social channels.
I have to quote my friend, Anna Billstrom, who wrote a blog article titled “The Demise of Email“: Anna states, “Basically: email is about as dead as your social security number, your physical address, or HTML.”
In the past, while I was working for Disney. I managed the broadcast email system on the engineering side. The tools we created were used to send out millions of emails to all the people that registered on websites like ESPN.com, ABC.com, ABCNews, Disney.com etc. The CRM team that used our tools, sent out over 100 million emails a year. Now as a person running thinkspace, I’m looking at ways to connect with more people, share the stories of what goes on inside thinkspace, and also educate people about my products and services. I’d like to build a better strategy and I think email is one of the areas that needs to be used in a more strategic manner.
Email is such an important tool for business in my opinion. It's pretty much every person's communication and information homebase. We also receive almost all of our social media notifications via email. Until that “inbox” feature of email is replace, email is here to stay. The question is how to best leverage it?
Email is far from dead. What has changed is ensuring we send the right information to the right people at the right time. One-size-fits-all email blasts will damage reputations and destroy customer relationships. Marketing automation systems (Eloqua, Marketo, Pardot, etc.) are helping marketing organizations with segmentation so customers are emailed information based on their position in an evaluation and buying cycle. Casting a broad net of poorly crafted and targeted email is a thing of the past. (Just like the old direct mail business where thousands of print mailers were sent in hopes of a 2% response.)
Generally I believe social media is a component of an overall communications and marketing strategy. SM will not replace email anytime soon – my business would be dead without email. And through these various channels it is critical that content is relevant, valuable, informative, and even entertaining.
When we develop marketing strategies for our customers, email marketing is almost always a critical component which is supported and integrated with social media marketing. When combined together, email, web, and social media all provide a powerful platform for connecting with customers.
Looks like a good conference. I'm planning to attend as well!
Zephyr 47, LLC
Brian, thanks for your comment. I'd be interested to learn more about what type of marketing automation system you're using. I also think that perhaps we should do an event in here at thinkspace on this topic. You sound very knowledgeable about this, perhaps this is something you would consider leading?
Thanks for the comment.
And in bonus local-boys-make-good music news, Berkeley-bred self-proclaimed “nerdcore” rapper MC Frontalot has an extensive interview on Gothamist today.
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