Takeaways From the Email Evolution Conference
I recently attended the 2011 Email Evolution Conference sponsored by the Direct Marketing Association's Email Experience Council, and here are some top takeaways:
1. Email needs to be more humanized.
In his keynote address, Gary Vaynerchuk, the online marketing trailblazer, entrepreneur and author of "CRUSH IT! Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In On Your Passion told attendees" that for the email industry to evolve, it must offer a more human experience to consumers. "I'm convinced that nobody in this room cares about their customers enough," Vaynerchuk said. "In the ecosystem we live in now, the currency is trust, appreciation and humanization.”
2. Marketers need to pay close attention to Facebook Messages.
This Facebook service, which allows email, text messages and instant messages to be linked together in a "social inbox," will be offered to most of the more than 500 million Facebook users over the next two months. Since people will undoubtedly be switching over to this service, marketers need to make sure they have a mechanism in place to deal with all the new addresses.
3. Stick to the basics.
While email is going through a rebirth of sorts, some industry best practices must remain the same. Austin Bliss, president and co-founder of FreshAddress, made the case that marketers should make it easy for consumers to sign up to receive their emails.
"Ask for their email addresses everywhere — on every page of your website, during every phone call and on every paper form," he said. Other best practices that were constant themes at the conference included the following: be vigilant about following email laws; master the subject line; be careful when using lists for acquisition; and strive for targeted, relevant and engaging emails.