The Future of Email Marketing: Trends & Best Practices for Engaging Audiences

April 5, 2024 Mario Stewart

In a society obsessed with youth, it’s good to know some things get better with age. Wine, whiskey, and Tom Cruise come to mind. But when you discover that an elder technology is outperforming new-fangled tech as the marketing channel of choice? Well, that should be front page news on the cover of AARP. 

Email marketing has accomplished that feat, and in this article, we have email marketing’s secrets for a youthful glow. That is, we have the trends and best practices for engaging audiences with email marketing. 

Email Marketing: A Winner Out of the Gate

Older than VCRs and more popular than Instagram, email is basically the Betty White of digital marketing. You may be shocked to know that email marketing came on the scene the same year that New Yorkers were disco-dancing to Staying Alive by the Bee Gees. 

In 1978, a guy named Gary Thuerk sent 400 emails promoting computer parts. Known as the world’s first email marketing campaign, those messages resulted in $13 to $14 million in revenue for Thuerk’s company. 

You may be thinking, “So, what?” John Travolta was raking in millions doing the splits in 1978. Today, we can all dance the Renegade on TikTok. How is email marketing meaningful now?

Email Marketing Is Relevant in 2024

Email is consistently the channel of choice for marketers, beating out social media, SEO, and content marketing. Email marketing has clear advantages over these other forms of promotion.

Insanely High ROI: Marketers see a return of up to $44 for every single $1 spent on email marketing, according to Campaign Monitor.

Powerful Customer Acquisition: Email marketing beats out Facebook and X when it comes to acquiring new customers—to the tune of being 40 times more effective, according to McKinsey.

Pinpoint Data Analytics: Email marketing is a closed system, meaning you have access to the important data you need to accurately analyze its effectiveness. There’s no mystery, and that means you can zero-in on what works more quickly than with other marketing channels.

Universal Tool: Finally, everyone has an email address. Like the drip coffee maker that’s been around for over 100 years, most people use email every day. 

Email Marketing Trends & Best Practices for 2024

Clearly, email marketing has been smart and chic since its inception. However, keeping up with style trends is the number one way to avoid being seen as “over the hill.” The same holds true for email marketing. Keep your email marketing campaign fresh with these best practices.

Follow the Law

There are several laws regulating email marketing. You’ll want to dig into these in more detail, but they amount to one thing: don’t be a jerk. No one wants an unsolicited, salesy spiel. So, stay on the right side of the law, and charm your audience with your good guy charisma by following these regulations.

Get Permission. There are two ways to get permission from recipients. Implied permission is a given when the recipient is a current customer or an active member of your community. If you don’t have an existing relationship then you’ll need express permission through an email subscription sign-up form.

Include an unsubscribe link. Create an easy and obvious path to opt out of emails. And make sure you abide by the opt-out request. Your email campaign receives a black mark every time a recipient reports your messages as spam. As your black marks pile up, email providers will deliver fewer of your messages. 

Be Like Honest Abe When Crafting Headers: Don’t create a false, sensationalist header just to get people to open your messages.

Automate Your Messages

Automating your messages means that your email marketing software will send pre-written messages to recipients based on the parameters you set up. So, when someone signs up for your event planning email list, they automatically get a welcome email. Or, when the couple whose wedding you planned celebrates their first anniversary, they receive an email of congratulations. 

Artificial intelligence is making automation even more sophisticated. AI can help you create complex parameters that reflect your sales funnel. You can even group your recipients and tailor their email messages by their engagement levels, demographics, or any number of factors. 

Include Interactive Features in Your Emails

Interactive content is engaging and memorable and increases the time your audience spends with your brand. By including interactive content in your marketing plan, including email marketing, you’re forging an emotional bond with your audience that builds brand loyalty. Try these ideas for interactive content in your email marketing campaign:

Surveys: Try fun topics like the best wedding song of 2024. Or ask your audience how corporate networking events benefit their career.

Audience Photos: Create a social media campaign during the event with which attendees can tag their photos. Then, create a collage of the best photos for your next email. 

Virtual Tours: Just before your next ritzy event opens for attendees, create a virtual tour of the location in all its decorated splendor. Then, share the virtual tour with your email subscribers. Your audience will feel like they have a backstage pass, while you show off your event planning creds. 

Host a Giveaway for Email Subscribers When They Visit Your Booth at The Event Planner Expo 2024

Email marketing creates a cozy community among your subscribers. You can strengthen that sense of community when you engage your audience in person. The Event Planner Expo 2024 is your chance to network with your audience as well as over 2,000 event industry professionals. Send a special invite to your email subscribers, promising them a special gift if they stop by your booth. Start today by reserving your booth at The Event Planner Expo 2024.

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