Email marketing isn’t glamorous or cutting edge, but it is still one of the best ways to reach out to clients. It is also inexpensive. Any insurance agent with an electronic address book can start email marketing today and can continue throughout the year for practically nothing. Furthermore, the demographics of email marketing make this one of the sweet spots for insurance agents. Here is a look at why most big brand name companies haven’t abandoned email — and why you shouldn’t either.
“Hasn’t email been replaced by social media networks and fancy widget apps?” you might ask. Actually, according to a recent 2012 survey, 77% of consumers stated that email was their preferred way to receive promotional messages. For adults over the age of 35, email was preferred by roughly 80% over direct mail, text messages, Facebook, Twitter, mobile apps, LinkedIn or telephone solicitations.
Email is preferable because it is perceived to be a safe medium that is minimally intrusive, easy to save and painless to access. The study looked at content, immediacy, accessibility, privacy, formality and initiation of message delivery, and found that email scored the best out of any form of communication medium as rated by consumers.
Another recent study revealed that email is a much better driver for online purchases than social media. This is partly because almost everyone has an email account, while the number of different social media platforms segment and divide viewers. In addition, many large companies block social media sites from their employees, but they do not block email access. Then there is what I call the star successful email factor: The most successful people I know don’t belong to any social media networks, but they do use email. How about you?
Email demographics and tools
Email also has the advantage of age. Email has been around for a long time and it has been studied at length. Users have been divided into large demographic groups according to location, socioeconomic data and what kinds of email accounts they hold. For example:
- Gmail users are more likely to be young, affluent males without children.
- AOL users tend to be women between the ages of 35-64 with children. They tend to be overweight.
- Yahoo users tend to be women between the ages of 18-49 with children. They tend to be overweight.
- Hotmail users tend to be younger unmarried women 18-34, without children.
Studies have even looked at which types of email account holders have higher response rates and when during the day a message is most likely to be read by a given group. Two large online marketing websites, Market Research and eMarketer, specialize in online marketing tools and reports. Here is a quick look at the type of information each provides:
Market research.com provides extensive paid reports including a variety of demographic reports. An extensive search engine makes it easy to search for reports by age, location, date, socioeconomic status and buying habits. There is an advanced keyword search section to further refine search criterion.