Once upon a time, you could pretty much guarantee that a subscriber would be reading your email from their computer. The only real guessing game revolved around whether it was being read on a desktop or laptop model. Bet I don’t have to tell you how that time is long gone. Today, your subscribers could be reading their messages on anything from a conventional computer to a mobile phone or tablet device.

The digital landscape is changing rapidly, and if you want to keep up with the channels your audience members are moving across, you must adapt accordingly. Luckily, adapting is relatively easy when keeping these simple points in mind:

Social Media Is Here to Stay

We have witnessed a number of trends during the current era of the digital age. Some have proved to be worth the bandwagon jump, while others were revealed to be nothing but hype. Social is a trend that is sure to stick around for a while. From Facebook and Twitter to LinkedIn and MySpace, social media is a global phenomenon with more than a billion users worldwide. Having this type of prevalence, it would be almost foolish to not give your email campaigns some sort of social element. Even if you have yet to establish a presence, simply providing a way for subscribers to share your content with their social communities could pay off big time.

Universal Email Is More Important than Ever

Knowing that more of your subscribers are reading their email on Androids, BlackBerrys and iPhones, you may feel pressured to make your campaigns more mobile friendly. This is a good mindset to have, but you need to think beyond mobile. Although checking email happens to be a common thing among smartphone users, plenty of people still prefer to read their messages in the traditional desktop environment. Throw in iPads, Galaxys and all the other devices they could be viewing their messages on, and it becomes clear to see just how important having one universal email that functions and looks good across the board really is.

Some Things Never Change

No matter what happens with the evolution of the digital channel or email itself, the importance of engaging your audience with relevant, interesting content will never change. If anything, it will become even more important as other forms of media are introduced. The user is holding most of the cards nowadays, meaning they are in position to dictate what they want to see. Waste their time with anything else, and they’ll ignore you without thinking twice. Take the time to understand what your audience wants, deliver and you can keep them in tune with your marketing message for the long haul.

Experiencing positive growth is all about being able to adapt and keep up with the times. If you can’t keep your email marketing program up to date, you may get left behind and trampled over in the rush.


by Denise Keller

Denise Keller is CFO and founding partner of Benchmark Email and a passionate philanthropist who has raised money for fresh water wells in Africa, grief counseling for needy children and a variety of other causes. A former accountant and an accomplished expert on enterprises, Keller showed solid business acumen at just 10 years old, when she started an arts and crafts babysitting service called “Daytime Playtime.” These days, you’ll find her detailing her newfound passion for Lean and the successes and tribulations as we make Benchmark a lean company.