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  • Writer's pictureMelanie Balke

Email Marketing and SMS in 2020

Email marketing has been a central component in the world of marketing for many years. This long-used form of marketing works to acquire new customers in a format that is highly-customizable, personable, and effective. Not as commonly talked about as email marketing, however, is a marketing method that is expected to become a more frequently capitalized channel of advertisement in 2020 than ever before: SMS marketing. While far from a ground-breaking concept, SMS marketing is expected to shift into the mainstream this year, with an increasing amount of businesses adding it to their marketing arsenal.

Today, we will be discussing the future of email marketing and SMS in 2020. Each of these marketing channels have their own benefits and will shape the marketing world in a powerful way in the year to come. In order to adapt with the ever-changing marketing sphere, it is vital that you are able to predict the way that best marketing practices will shift and change with the years. Here is your guide to email marketing and SMS in 2020. Let’s get started!

The Benefits of Email Marketing in 2020

Email marketing is a tool valuable for all possible forms of marketing and this will remain true in 2020. While social media marketing is becoming a more highly talked about form of marketing, the power of email marketing is still as observable as ever. In fact, most retail professionals find that email marketing drives the highest level of customer engagement as compared to other forms of marketing.

Aside from the obvious benefit of higher levels of customer engagement, there are many reasons to choose email marketing in 2020. Another benefit of email marketing in the coming year is that email marketing is by far one of the most cost-effective marketing methods. While other forms of marketing such as TV and print advertisements are costly and will likely only become more expensive in 2020, email marketing remains almost completely free of fees. While you may need to hire a team of marketing professionals in order to assist you with creating email content, these costs are fairly minimal, especially when compared to more expensive forms of advertisement.

Email marketing is also one of the most convenient forms of marketing for you as the process of email marketing is almost fully automated after you generate and input an email list. While many other forms of marketing can’t be automated, email marketing is actually more effective due to how simply it is automated. Automating your emails even helps to boost both the timeliness and relevancy of your campaigns. There aren’t many types of marketing methods out there that reward you for automation.

Email Marketing Trends of 2020

Although email marketing has been around for quite some time, it is constantly evolving along with the ever-changing technological landscape. For this reason, every passing year comes with its own changes to the way we use email marketing in the form of trends. So what email marketing trends can we expect to see in 2020 and what can each of these trends do for the way you plan and implement your own marketing strategies?

User-Generated Content

The use of user-generated content in email marketing is expected to be a big change in 2020. User-generated content, also known as any form of content created by the product’s end user, is known to drive real-time engagement. Using email marketing to motivate your consumers to contribute their own user-generated content will be a key effort in driving customer engagement in 2020.

Improved Accessibility

Another huge email marketing trend that we will see in 2020 is improved accessibility. Most notably, we will continue to see a rise in the use of smart speakers with voice assistants to read emails aloud to customers. This provides great accessibility to those on your email list with physical and cognitive disabilities. A trend towards greater accessibility means that in order to optimize your email marketing efforts to the highest degree, you will need to stay on top of this trend. Here are a few ways that you can make your emails more accessible to all of your readers in 2020:

  • Focus on accessible design by using appropriate font sizes, avoiding long sections of center-justified text in emails, and using high contrast colors to assist the reader

  • Focus on accessible content by limiting the use of industry-specific jargon, keeping sentences short and concise, and localizing your content for a global audience

  • Focus on accessible code to ensure your emails work for every user. Make sure that you have ALT tags for all images, a language is specified in HTML, and that your HTML tables are easily accessible to screen readers.

Advancements in Email Automation

In the past decade, there have been a slew of advancements in the world of email automation. With the start of a new decade in 2020, it is very likely that these advancements will continue and that they will continue to shape how we use email marketing to reach customers.

Marketing cloud services, for example, now have greater processing and data power. This allows for improved optimizations across marketing channels, improved stat models, and has opened the door for machine learning to lead email marketing efforts into a new age. Here are a few of the ways that advancements in email automation will make email marketing easier in 2020:

  • Easier methods for establishing performance benchmarks

  • Smarter automated segmentation

  • Improved A/B testing

  • Improved multivariate testing

The Benefits of SMS Marketing

In the way of SMS marketing, there are three main benefits that we will continue to see in 2020. Here are the various ways that you can use SMS marketing to gain a competitive edge in the coming year and beyond.

The first major benefit of SMS marketing tactics in 2020 is that it is one of the fastest ways to directly market to your consumers. SMS campaigns are received instantly and, more often than not, these messages are read by customers nearly instantly as well. In fact, studies show that 90% of SMS messages are read within the first three minutes that they are received. If you run time-sensitive marketing campaigns for limited-time offers, this is an especially efficient way of marketing to your customers.

SMS marketing is also beneficial to your overall marketing methods in 2020 in that it earns higher open rates and improved engagement rates. Unlike email marketing, SMS marketing sends an instant push-notification to the mobile devices of your consumers. In order to receive email marketing messages, customers must have push notifications set up on their mobile devices whereas SMS messages will be sent to their phones instantly. This results in higher open rates due to convenience for your consumer.

Improved engagement rates result from SMS marketing tactics due to the fact that they easily grab the attention of customers. In fact, 70% of customers say that SMS is an attention-grabber, causing them to be more likely to open the messages in the first place. SMS messages don’t just capture higher open rates, they also receive more clicks, and therefore engagement, than emails. This is something we expect to see continue in 2020.

SMS Marketing Trends of 2020

With SMS marketing becoming a more commonly used marketing channel in 2020, the way that we use it to reach customers, drive sales, and improve conversion rates is changing with each passing year. So what can we expect to see from SMS marketing this year? Here are a few of the biggest SMS marketing trends of 2020.

Smart Texts

Creating personalized digital experiences for your consumer base is key to driving higher rates of engagement. This year, it is highly predicted that SMS marketing will see a greater focus on smarter text communications. This will include smart texts that will be capable of performing basic tasks automatically and assist you in offering targeted promotions to consumers. Here are some of the most popular uses of smart texts that we expect to see in SMS marketing for 2020:

  • Happy Birthday messages

  • Payment reminders

  • Event/Appointment reminders

  • Customer anniversaries

Use of SMS Marketing as a Direct Marketing Channel

According to stats from 2017 where 37 million people opted willingly to receive SMS marketing messages from the brands using them, 2020 is projected to show even more of an increase in SMS marketing with a predicted 49 million people opting for SMS marketing messages. As you can infer from these statistics, there is no better time to get into SMS marketing than in 2020.

With mobile devices being the most widely used form of electronic devices in the United States, brands who have yet to utilize SMS marketing will be missing out on a huge opportunity in 2020. SMS marketing will be used as a direct marketing channel more often in 2020 due to the fact that consumers consistently view text message marketing favorably as compared to other channels.

Greater Conversions From SMS Marketing

SMS marketing will offer higher rates of conversion in 2020 as compared to marketing channels like social media, phone calls, and even emails. So why is SMS marketing so effective in increasing conversions? For one, marketers began creating SMS content crafted to encourage consumers to take action in the form of links, coupon codes, and calls to action in 2018. Although this is a relatively new method, it has proven to be extremely effective in pushing customer engagement and conversion rates. We expect these methods to prove even more fruitful in 2020. Watch the video of the live conference here.

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