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Email Marketing vs Social Media Performance

Posted On Sunday, 17 March 2019


Email or social media: which one is better? With so many consumers on social media these days, you may be wondering whether email marketing is still effective. In this post, we’ll share the 2016-2019 statistics and forecasts for email marketing vs social media performance.

83% of marketers say that social media is important for their business. In light of these trends, some marketers are wondering, is social media to replace email?
As you can see, email marketing is more effective than social media across the board, with just one exception (sharing).

Email is still the most widely used channel at 2.6 billion unique users worldwide. That number is expected to continue to grow, reaching over 2.9 billion by the end of 2019. Research from ExactTarget reports that the majority of consumers check their email first thing, before anything else online.

Additionally, these email-first individuals tend to be more task-oriented online than the people who start their day on Facebook or Twitter. In other words, they are more likely to approach online interactions with the goal of finding deals, promotions, or new product information.

When asked how often they use email vs social media, consumers clearly prefer email with 91% saying that they use email at least once per day.

So most consumers check their email first and use email more frequently than anything else. But what exactly do they like to use email for?

It turns out that 77% of consumers prefer email over social media for permission-based promotional messages. That’s great news for email marketers!

However, you might think that people prefer social media when it comes to personal communication. After all, that’s what social media was made for! But that is simply not the case.

Even when it comes to personal messages, consumers still prefer to use email.

Bottom Line (in the words of ExactTarget): “Email is not only alive– it’s the number one direct channel in terms of daily use and consumer preference for both personal and marketing communications.”

Which Drives More Sales: Email or Social Media?

As a marketer, you may fear that your subscribers will be upset with you for sending them “salesy” emails. But according to the ExactTarget survey, consumers actually feel that it is completely acceptable for marketers to send them promotional messages via email.

On the other hand, they feel it is far less acceptable for companies to send them promotional messages via social media.

Deals and discounts are important for driving sales, so where do consumers go to look for them? When people want to find a special deal, email is the go-to channel.

44% of users check their email for a deal from a company they know, whereas only 4% will go to Facebook.

So consumers are totally fine with receiving your promotional emails, and they actually want to find deals in their inbox. But do these promotional emails really work to drive sales?

YES.

66% of consumers state that they have made a purchase as the result of a marketing message they received by email.

On the flip side, only 20% of them have ever made a purchase resulting from a Facebook promotion, and a mere 6% ever purchased something resulting from a Twitter promotion.

Marketers confirm that email is definitely the best channel for generating sales. According to the latest McKinsey iConsumer survey, email is still a significantly more effective way to acquire customers than social media.

Which Has Greater Reach: Email or Social Media?

Although email is the best way to make sales, you might think that social media has the greater reach. However, it doesn’t.

Email reaches 79% of the people you send it to (this is the global, average inbox placement rate). On the other hand, Facebook’s organic reach has declined to about 1-6%, depending on your total number of fans.

That means only 1-6% of your Facebook fans will actually see your posts!

In order to increase your organic reach on Facebook, people have to actually engage with your posts, and this can be difficult to accomplish. But with email, you can increase your inbox placement rate simply by following best practices to make sure your emails don’t go in the spam box.

Twitter’s organic reach is more variable, but the highest reach is reported to be somewhere around 30%. That’s better than Facebook, but still pretty poor in comparison to email.

Bottom line: Email has far greater reach than social media.

Which Has Greater Reach: Email or Social Media?

Although email is the best way to make sales, you might think that social media has the greater reach. However, it doesn’t.

Email reaches 79% of the people you send it to (this is the global, average inbox placement rate). On the other hand, Facebook’s organic reach has declined to about 1-6%, depending on your total number of fans.

That means only 1-6% of your Facebook fans will actually see your posts!

In order to increase your organic reach on Facebook, people have to actually engage with your posts, and this can be difficult to accomplish. But with email, you can increase your inbox placement rate simply by following best practices to make sure your emails don’t go in the spam box.

Twitter’s organic reach is more variable, but the highest reach is reported to be somewhere around 30%. That’s better than Facebook, but still pretty poor in comparison to email.

Bottom line: Email has far greater reach than social media.

Author: Mary Fernandez

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