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Why Your Email List Ain’t All That

Let me guess: this post title is making you squirm.  For all you care, I may as well come out and say Facebook is dead!

For one – you spent a small fortune and put in heaps of time and effort trying to build a substantial email list, one that would generate you high quality leads that someday (hopefully sooner rather than later) will convert into millions of dollars worth of sales.

I get it – I’ve helped many clients set up opt-in funnels, competitions, pop-ups, the works -  and have done so on my own businesses as well. Trying to acquire even just one new subscriber can sometimes feel SO DAMN HARD.

But this isn’t a brain fart post aimed at getting a rise out of you.

Here’s the thing.

The way people are communicating and brokering deals is changing. Fast.  I’m not normally one to throw everything up in the air as soon as a new platform rears its head but this is one that just can’t be ignored.

I’m talking about Messaging Apps.

The fastest growing trend of our decade.

Just last month Facebook Messenger cracked over 1 billion users, and every day over 315 million snaps are sent through Snapchat. Not phased – how about this, a recent study by Juniper Research found that over 43 trillion IM messages were sent in 2015, surpassing email (at 30 trillion) for the first time! This shit is real people!

Over the weekend I was having a drink (or three) with friends who are currently importing a product into Australia – my friend mentioned that the majority of the deals she brokers with potential suppliers are done through Messenger! Wow, can we take a moment to stop here, this is massive!

So why is the messaging craze growing so fast?  These are just my speculations (feel free to share your theories below):

  1. Well for one, the younger generation isn’t too hot on email – sure they all have them, but mainly so that they create social media accounts!
  2. Secondly, email is becoming extremely spammy – I don’t know about you but my inbox is always filled with irrelevant updates and campaigns. Trying to unsubscribe to them all is a never-ending battle. According to studies, 80% of email sent is spam!
  3. And lastly, and perhaps most important to you – email open rates are pathetic at best. The industry average is 20%, but even if you’re cracking a whopping 50% – that means that over half of your audience never received your important message.

Messaging apps, on the other hand, have a 98% open rate (higher than SMS marketing). Facebook is expected to announce any moment that it will open Messenger up to brands and publishers.  How this will translate into a marketing function is yet to be determined (no doubt there will initially be heaps of  growing pains).

But don’t do a total freak.   Email is not going away anytime soon (remember back in the 90’s they said email was dead) –  it’s just important to be aware that the way we connect and communicate is changing and that sinking $50K into growing your email may no longer be the wisest investment.

As with any marketing, investment or business activity – never hedge all your bets in one place. Spread the load to avoid massive blows and disappointment in the future. By all means continue to grow your email list, but also start investing time into growing leads across other platforms and channels, especially in IM.

 

What are your thoughts, let me know in the comments below, I would love to hear if you agree or disagree with me.

Comments ( 2 )

  • Vicki Jeffels says:

    YES! This is what I’ve been trying to say for about two years now. All you need do is look at China who are about 2-3 years ahead of the Western world in digital marketing, and the rise of messenger apps there. EG/ WeChat etc. As information overload becomes more of a ‘thing’ we will all start to pull in our information nets, and stringently validate those trying to reach out to us. A network, like those that naturally develop on messaging apps, will be more valuable as a trusted source.

  • Glen Maguire says:

    I definitely agree that “message marketing” (or would it be “messenger marketing”? Does it have an official name yet?) has a ton of potential, but I think email marketing is far from dead. As the little girl on the taco commercial says – why not both? 😉

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