There are now close to 4 billion email users worldwide – that’s almost half of the entire world population! And with an average ROI of 3,800%, you should be doing your best to hone your email marketing craft.

Here are some email marketing trends that could take your business to the next level in 2019.

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AI Infusion

If you haven’t started yet, 2019 should be the year you begin implementing AI into your email marketing efforts. There are plenty of available tools on the market that can help you do the following:

  • Coming up with subject lines and images
  • Customizing content based on an individual’s past interactions with previous emails
  • Predicting when users could unsubscribe
  • Curate nurture emails
  • Provide insights into which types of content leads to website traffic

These are just a few examples among a whole host of features that AI could bring to your email marketing. But before you jump into a solutions provider, take a look at what elements you think can help your campaign and make a decision based on need.

Brain Diagram

AMP for Email

AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) is a Google initiative designed to speed up the rendering time of web pages on mobile devices. The tech allows marketers to create website-like experiences within an email. These could include:

  • Use of carousels and accordions
  • Accepting user input
  • Browse content straight from the inbox

But the most exciting possibility brought to email by AMP is the ability for content to be updated. For example, if you visit the Ritz Carlton website today, the following day, the hotel could email you a list of available rooms. When you return to the same email the following week to find the hotel’s contact info, you find that the content has been updated with the latest available listings.

Email that doesn’t get stale – that would be a blessing to marketers.

Additionally, because it is yet to be available to all email service providers, AMP is also backwards compatible with unsupported email clients. This means content would only fall back to older markup language if it’s unsupported.

Google AMP Home Page

Increased Segmentation

If you’re not segmenting your list in 2019, you’re not doing it right. According to HubSpot, segmented and targeted emails account for an estimated 58% of all earnings. This is mainly because it allows you to target highly specific groups of people with a personalized message relevant to their individual needs.

For example, you can segment a group based on preferred content streaming services, geographic location, and email opt-in dates. So if, say, a marketer is organizing a music festival in Calabasas, California, they can target a campaign based on:

  • People who live within a 200-mile radius of Calabasas
  • People who regularly open promotional emails from the company
  • People who have purchased a music-related product from the company
  • People under 40

Because you send targeted segmented emails to people who are actually interested in receiving them, this will lead to higher open rates, higher click-through rates and better customer relationships.

Dart Board

Interactive Content

SnapApp defines interactive content as content that requires participants’ active engagement, beyond simply watching or reading. Those who engage, in return, will receive real-time, hyper-relevant results they care about.

The Geek's Guide to London

The animated infographic above goes beyond the generic image slide shows of travel and lifestyle content. For example, if you click on “Walking Tour,” you’ll be presented with a suggested tour provider, why it’s different from the usual tour, and a CTA to check the tour’s availability. It’s not only highly-engaging and visually appealing, it’s extremely useful.

According to Martech Advisor, interactive content increases click-to-open rate by 73%. And if you’ve ever interacted with it yourself, you’ll understand why.

Hand Touching an Email Icon

More Storytelling in Content

Speaking of engaging content, emails in 2019 will be shifting from hard selling to more storytelling. Storytelling in email means that you’re providing content that engages audiences by creating an emotional connection.

As noted by Benchmark, these types of email content:

  • Provide stories focused on a customers’ pain points
  • Furthers the connection between the brand and its customers
  • Reduces the spam/promotional vibe of brand emails

In the “More Storytelling in Content” example mentioned in the Benchmark link above, Patagonia talks about their efforts to champion environmental sustainability. This subject resonates with their audience as they’re outdoors enthusiasts who care about their playground.

Paper That Reads "Once Upon a Time"

Countdown Timers

Countdown timers create a sense of urgency, which has been a proven technique to increase sales and conversions. These attention-grabbing timers also create a strong, visual CTA that can be processed by email recipients in an instant.

As well, countdown timers serve as a great tool for building anticipation, which would then increase the open rates of your successive emails. For example, if you send an email with a timer for a flash sale, if your recipient has been carefully targeted, chances are they’ll be looking forward to the next email with more info on the sale. This could then lead to future emails being instantly noticed in their inboxes.

Clock

Human Conversations

As people lean more and more toward authenticity, they prefer to engage with other people as opposed to a corporate message. This means that your email content should have more personality in order to create a genuine connection with your audience.

It’s important to note, though, that the tone of your emails should still take into consideration the target audience.

In the “Writing in Conversational Tones” example mentioned by Benchmark, Chubbies plays into their brand personality of being the carefree person who likes to chill and enjoy a few beers. While they’re essentially nudging their customer towards a purchase, they make it sound like a buddy just making a friendly suggestion.

Coffee Cups on a Tray

Takeaway

Email marketing will continue to be a valuable tool into the foreseeable future. Taking advantage of trends and technological innovation will elevate not only your email marketing, but your business as well.

What do you plan on implementing in 2019?

Written by Vincent Sevilla

Vincent Sevilla is a professional web designer for WebsiteSetup, and writer on Metapress. He also has an extensive background in online marketing. You can follow him on Twitter @easyvince and Google+.