The ways in which we access and read email - via smart phones, tablets, and social networks, for example - are evolving rapidly. Most email applications are not very forward thinking, using outdated templates and former best practices. Today, email may not be a standalone digital conduit for brands to pipe through deals, offers, and newsletters. The game-changing opportunity is at our front door. (I encourage you to watch the presentation, "The New Inbox: Email + Social + Mobile," by my colleague Ryan Tuttle. It doesn't sugarcoat the changes in how people are consuming messaging from their favorite brands.)
Trends in Mobile
While things like daily deals and social networks are creating a new type of inbox, mobile devices and technologies are also shaping the ways in which people digest content. Smartphone and tablet users are being conditioned to access a unified inbox for all digital messaging communication. The home screens of most smartphones are becoming the starting point for decision-making when a new message arrives. Facebook updates, tweets, email, and more are all arriving on the home screen, with little discernable difference.
Honeycomb, Google's tablet version of Android, is pushing the centralized notification even further with its notification icon bar and enhanced widgets. Apple's mobile operating system, iOS, is continuing to centralize the digital messaging stream as well; iOS 5 will include a notification center that goes beyond the current push notices and icons in iOS 4. This means that texts, social requests, email, and more will all be in once place, and the user may not even be aware of the distinctions. Your competitors' tweets and SMS messages may be right next to your email campaign.
5 Tips for Creating Better Emails
In light of these trends, what do you need to know and do in order to transition and succeed?
What do you think the new inbox is going to look like, and what tips can you share with fellow marketers? Let us know in the comments section below.
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Simms Jenkins is CEO of BrightWave Marketing, North America's leading email marketing-focused digital agency. The award-winning firm specializes in elevating email marketing and digital messaging programs that drive revenue, cut costs, and build relationships. Jenkins has led BrightWave Marketing in establishing a world-class client list including Affiliated Computer Service (A Xerox Company), Chick-fil-A, Cox Business, Phillips66, Porsche, and Southern Company. The agency was recently ranked among the fastest growing private companies by Inc. Magazine.
Jenkins was awarded the prestigious AMY 2010 Marketer of the Year from the American Marketing Association for being the top agency marketer and the Email Marketer of the Year at the Tech Marketing Awards held by the Technology Association of Georgia. Jenkins is regarded as one of the leading experts in the email marketing industry and is regularly cited by the media as such and called upon by the financial community to provide market insight and consulting.
Jenkins is the author of two definitive and highly regarded books on email marketing; The New Inbox (published in April 2013 by ClickZ/Incisive Media) and The Truth About Email Marketing (published by Pearson's Financial Times Press in 2008). Jenkins is currently the Email Marketing Best Practices Columnist for ClickZ, the largest resource of interactive marketing news and commentary in the world, online or off. His industry articles have been called one of the top 21 information sources for email marketers.
He has been featured in Fortune Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Adweek, Bloomberg TV, Wired Magazine, and scores of other leading publications and media outlets. Jenkins is a regular speaker at major digital industry and general business conferences.
Additionally, Jenkins is the creator of EmailStatCenter.com and SocialStatCenter.com, the leading authorities on email and social media metrics. Prior to founding BrightWave Marketing, Jenkins headed the CRM group at Cox Interactive Media.
Jenkins serves on the eMarketing Association's Board of Advisors among other civic and professional boards. He is also a mentor at Flashpoint, a Georgia Tech-based startup accelerator program. Jenkins is a graduate of Denison University in Granville, Ohio and resides in Atlanta's Buckhead neighborhood with his wife and three children.
December 12, 2013
1:00pm ET / 10:00am PT