Email is often proclaimed to be dead, so much so that I often assume its replacement is right around the corner. So far, it hasn’t happened. A recent survey found that email dominates as the preferred channel for permission-based messages. #2 is so far behind that it could be an asterisk ( direct mail of all things).
So why is email so pervasive and beloved if it sucks so much that it’s supposed to be dead?
I think it’s for the reason people have clogged inboxes. Email is more than a communication tool, it’s an organization tool. One could argue that it’s a terrible organization tool, but it will hardly matter. For the foreseeable future it is the communication/organization tool of choice for most people.
If you assume that people are saving emails to look at them later, it means two things about email marketing that are important:
1. Your immediate click-through rate might not be as important as you think. Based on the sizes of inboxes that I see, it could be weeks before someone chooses to take action on your newsletter.
2. Permission is more important than ever. It’s something of a privilege to be one of the emails clogging an inbox. It means you were not deleted or unsubscribed, and that means there’s a chance. Once you’ve been unsubscribed, forget it.