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EMAIL MARKETING: What does the future hold for email marketing?

Email remains an alluring prospect for marketers, for reasons such as cost and speed. Yet rapidly filling inboxes mean that badly targeted communications can be an annoyance for recipients. Email may be cheap and relatively easy to track, but skimping on the investment of time and planning makes it more likely your campaign will end up rejected by spam filters or ignored.

Fortunately, the discipline is maturing. Marketers have learned a number of lessons when it comes to the success of email campaigns, not least the fact that the days of 'batch and blast' are over.

"Leave mass mailing behind or you'll turn people off," says Andrew Stout, managing director at digital agency Dolphin. "You now get more junk-style information in your inbox than through your letterbox - because it's more cost-effective than mail."