Naysayers have been predicting the death of email marketing for years now. However, these predictions have been proven wrong every single time.  In 2021, email still remains one of the most prominent channels for marketing.

Over the years, as other channels come and go, email marketing has remained, constantly growing and evolving. Many social media platforms have appeared and disappeared, while email marketing stays strong.

According to the trends for the past year, it is expected that in 2022, email marketing will continue to increase its user base and deliver incredible results. Therefore, in this article we’ll dig into the email marketing trends we believe will shine through in 2022. ✨

Top Email Marketing Trends For 2022

1. Interactivity

In the past, clicking a button to go to a landing page was considered “interactive” for email. But that’s not the case anymore. In order to engage with your recipients, you need to create interactivity that is native – i. e. that happens directly in the inbox.

For example, adding videos that users can play without having to follow a link, sliders in your email, games that can be played in the inbox, carousels of images that allow users to swipe, and so on.

In 2022, the expectations for email content are going to keep on rising, so you need to plan accordingly.

2. The end of open rate as a main signal

Until recently, open rate was one of the top signals when it came to monitoring an email campaign. It might come as a surprise, but this is changing soon.

This results from new privacy settings on Apple devices that limit the information that can be collected about users. 📱

Before this update from Apple, open rates were tracked by a pixel that was loaded when the emails were opened. However, Apple now preloads the whole email, which means the pixel is preloaded.

As the pixel is preloaded, these emails are all marked as open, which, of course, is not always the case. At the same time, senders will not be able to track the user IP either. This renders the open rate useless as a signal to measure campaign success, because over 61% of emails are opened on a mobile device, and 28.4% use an Apple device. So, a large percentage of emails will be shown erroneously as open despite the fact that the receiver did not open the email.

This creates the need to rely on other metrics, such as list growth rate and conversion rate to correctly measure the success of an email marketing campaign.

Email marketing trends

3. Using artificial intelligence (AI)

Artificial intelligence is a trend in marketing that’s not disappearing any time soon. Through the use of AI, marketers can make informed decisions and create better experiences for readers. 📖

The main impact of AI is its ability to analyze huge amounts of data quickly and easily, which marketers can then use to help tailor their email messages to their audience. Using artificial intelligence, you can understand trends and patterns you wouldn’t otherwise.

We are all aware of how artificial intelligence changes the game for digital marketing, and email marketing is no exception.

Not only can you improve your results, but you can also make your customers happier with the right segmentation and personalization in your messages and automations.

4. Personalized messaging

This trend ties up with the previous one, since artificial intelligence allows you to personalize your messages more easily. Personalized messages can be created with little to no effort by using automation flows, segments and tags.

By adding users to a specific segment, or adding a tag to users that have taken a specific action and adding that segment or tag to your automation flow, you can easily make sure that users are met with content that exceeds their expectations.

There are many ways in which you can personalize your messages. Let’s say you send a message to all your new users, but only 30% open the email.

You can add a tag or segment the users that didn’t open it, send them another message with a different subject, and there you go: you personalized this message according to the user action (in this case, not opening an email). 🤖

In 2022, this will be very common, with many companies using marketing automation to personalize their messages for customers or prospects.

5. Focusing on mobile

The latest stats show that over half of all emails sent are open on mobile. This means that you absolutely need to optimize your marketing messages for mobile devices.

Focusing on mobile means adapting your content for every screen size, from laptops and desktops to tablets and mobile phones.

If you use Platformly, you’ll find all our email templates are responsive for all screen sizes. It’s very important to make sure that everything, from visuals to text, is legible for someone checking their email on a mobile phone.

If you have links from your email to a landing page, this page should also be responsive in order to create a cohesive message for your readers who click through.

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6. Impact of data privacy

Apple launched their Mail Privacy Protection features in 2021, and that shook the foundations of email marketing. This launch has made it more difficult for marketers to track results, especially, when it comes to open rate, as we mentioned previously.

This creates a challenge for email marketers and marketing teams all over the world, as 50% of mobile phone users in the United States use Apple products. Of course, if half of your readers are protected by these measures, you need to play by the rules.

But email is all set to prove itself a winner over and over again, especially among Generation Z (70% of them use email) and Millennials (61%). The new generations have a great relationship with email and are used to getting news from brands and offers in their inbox.

7. Focus on performance marketing

If marketers cannot count on open rates anymore, how can they measure campaign success? Well, open rates were never a good indicator, to begin with, being too easy to manipulate.

This forces email marketing professionals to shift their focus from open rates to performance metrics such as the click-through rate, list growth rate, and conversion rate. You can access these metrics via Platformly. 🔥

Performance metrics like these are more precise when it comes to measuring results, enabling you to adapt your strategy accordingly. So, in short: open rate is out, performance is in!

8. User-generated content

User-generated content is a great way to increase trust in your brand. Social proof such as reviews from Google, G2 and similar sources, shows prospects what other people think of your product or service. If you have happy customers, give them a voice and they’ll be your best ambassadors.

You can also encourage reviews by offering a free sample, or any other offer you can make to give customers that little push. The good reputation and increased conversions justify the investment you make on these customers.

In 2022, these affirmations from customers will be even more powerful, taking place in many channels such as Twitter, LinkedIn, and so on. When you collect these testimonials, you can use them to show prospective customers how your product helps them.

9. Focus on clean design

Clean email design has been trending for a few years now, and 2022 is not going to be an exception. The idea behind this trend is to improve readability and create a better user experience, so it’s no surprise that it will keep on making an appearance in our list

Once again, Apple is on the cutting edge of this trend, having adopted clean design for a long time now. Other brands like Starbucks, Litmus and Uber, just to name a few, have adopted this kind of design for their emails, with great success.

Clean design not only helps legibility, but it also improves your click-through rate by making it clear what action you want users to take. By avoiding the visual clutter, clean design makes your message, your links, and your buttons stand out.

10. Ensure landing page quality

Of course, it’s no use doing all this on your email messages if your landing page does not live up to expectations. First of all, the design on your landing page needs to match your email. This improves user experience and makes it easier for users to trust you.

The design is the first thing you notice when opening an email or arriving at a landing page. If you have a clear visual, you’re already ahead of your competition.

Make sure every button on your landing page has a clear call to action, matched with a contrasting color against the background.

Creating a great landing page will continue to be important in 2022 as users are getting more and more demanding of the user experience brands offer them. You cannot stay behind.

11. Email accessibility

Are your emails accessible for everyone?

First of all, your content needs to be responsive and optimized for different devices. Graphics should be easy to understand and/or have alt-tags for visually impaired users.

The text should also be simple,easy to understand and ofan adequate font size so as to improve readability. Colour combinations should also help distinguish the different sections: from the text, to the images, to the background and the buttons.

Make sure your email ticks all of these boxes to make it easy to read and understand for all users, no matter their disabilities.

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How To Stay Up To Date?

Okay, so that’s a lot to take in. So, how do you stay up to date with email marketing trends in this ever-changing landscape? In this section, we’ll give you three tips that will help you keep up with the changes.

1. Use automation triggers, especially time-based

Triggers are the foundation of your automated marketing. They change status based on actions from users in the funnel, and you can set triggers such as “user opened an email”, “user made their first purchase”, “user clicked on a link”, “user downloaded ebook”… There are many actions you can use as an email automation trigger.

Time-based triggers make sure that these actions take place in a specific time frame.

This implies that you’re always getting fresh leads, and that no user will be bothered if they don’t want to receive any more messages from you – be it emails, SMS or even push notifications.

Remember to use this kind of trigger in your automations in order to keep your strategy up to date. 🕐

2. Prioritize your subscribers

This should go without saying, but your subscribers need to be your priority over other prospects.

After all, these are people that actually asked to get news from you. They need to be front and center in your strategy, no matter what you sell. If you have something new or important to talk about, go to your mailing list first.

Also, make sure you don’t overdo it. Prioritizing your subscribers is also about giving them space and time. We recommend establishing expectations from the beginning, and this includes a set frequency. Make sure you have your subscribers’ interests in mind whenever you email them.

3. Test, test, and test some more

We can never stress this enough: all campaigns benefit from frequent testing. You might have great results for ages, until one day, your setup is no longer working.

Email marketing is always evolving, and that’s how it stays relevant. When it comes to longevity and resilience, email is unbeatable. You need to test your campaigns: we recommend A/B testing to begin with, using two versions of an email to figure out the better performing variation. 📮

This could be a variation to the subject line, a call to action button, anything you feel you can improve according to your data.

Once you establish this procedure, it gets easy to collect data you can analyze to achieve optimal results.

Email Marketing Trends

Wrapping Up

As you can see, many email marketing trends, such as personalization and clean design, are already around in 2021 and will continue into the new year.

Of course, email marketing keeps on bringing results, with great conversion rates. That is just one of the reasons why you need to make sure you never stop testing, and, most of all, never stop learning.

Is there any email marketing trend we missed? Let us know in the comment box, or find us at Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

About Author

Deeply passionate about writing, copy, and social media. Digital Marketing Assistant at Platformly.

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