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Marketers fail to engage targets with email

Professionals in Europe are devoting over a third of their day to email, yet marketing campaigns are failing to engage them, according to new research from Adobe.

The study of over 3000 office workers found that despite high levels of email usage, the branded email open rate has dropped to 21% – down 10% from last year. 

The reading and writing of emails continues around the clock, with almost eight in 10 respondents (79%) checking work emails outside of office hours – some 61% while on holiday, and 42% while in bed. 

In the UK, smartphones have overtaken desktops as the most popular device for reading emails, while 22% of Europeans purport to disengage with an email that isn’t optimised for the device they're using.

Rising rates of email engagement are in correlation with widespread smartphone usage. Many respondents indicate this is having a negative impact on email quality: over one-third (36%) observed a trend toward less formal emails, while 32% find that the written quality of emails is decreasing.

John Watton, marketing director, digital marketing EMEA at Adobe, commented: “Despite speculation over its demise, email continues to be one of the main channels we use to communicate. 

“But people’s expectations of email, including the way they write and respond to emails, is changing with mobile use – something marketers need to keep top-of-mind as they seek to better engage their customers and prospects.”