"Hope is a risk that must be run." -George Bernanos
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The bells are starting to ring again that email is dying.
I'm reading reports that email use is on the decline and
online users are spending less and less time communicating
What are Internet users doing instead?
Some reports say they're spending more time at social
networking sites. Others say users spend most of their
time online looking at content as opposed to chatting or
In either case, the reports paint a bleak picture for emails'
As an email marketer since 1995, I have to say, I've heard
the cries before that emails is dying. The simple fact is
email is not about to wither away.
Are social networking sites and interesting content sites
growing in popularity - absolutely! But email will continue
to hold its own as a valuable tool and marketing vehicle.
In fact, email marketers can participate in social
networking sites, like MySpace, Facebook and LinkedIn to
build their email list. And with the rising popularity of
video, v-mail (video email) is going to transform email
As an email marketer now is the time to look to the future
and consider how you can incorporate video into your
email marketing campaigns.
Why should you consider video?
According to Pew Internet & American Life Project "fifty-
seven percent of online adults have used the internet to
watch or download video, and 19% do so on a typical day."
A recent comScore report also found that more than three-
quarters of the US online population over the age of 15
initiated a video stream in April.
Plus video is an incredible viral tool. Pew Internet &
American Life Project found "more than half of online
video viewers (57%) share links to the video they find with
others, and three in four (75%) say they receive links to
watch video that others have sent to them."
And viral videos are hugely successful at generating site
traffic! A study conducted by Marketing Experiments
showed that a video they created, with no advertising
expense or promotion, was viewed 324,000 times in just 60
days. The video generated 4,162 clicks to their site and
1.49% of viewers went on to become newsletter
So how can you start to use video email effectively?
Here are 5 basic tips to get you started:
1) Understand the Limitations
Video emails can not be viewed in Outlook or in web
based email programs. These applications disable the video
clips. Therefore, do not try to embed your video into your
emails - the result will be most never see your video
2) Use an External Landing Page
Instead, inside your emails give readers a URL to go to see
the video on your web site or at youtube.com. Provide a
click to view option in the email. Thus readers can choose
if they wants to open the video or not. If people are at work
or on the road with a Blackberry, they'll likely hold off on
viewing a video until they're at home later.
3) Include a Call to Action
In the video ask viewers to act upon the offer you make.
Provide a 15% off coupon or a sign-up today pitch.
4) Provide a Tell-a-Friend Link
As statistics show many videos are passed on to friends,
make it easy for your video viewers to tell their friends.
Have a form right on your video landing page that allows
readers to quickly email a note to their friends about
5) Give Viewers Control
Consumers want to be in control of the marketing
relationship. Therefore make sure your video gives them
the control they desire. Allow viewers to decide if they
want to see the video, i.e. don't trigger the video
automatically. Give viewers the control to pause, stop
and/or replay your video. And be sure to allow viewers to
control the volume.
Here's one extra point for good results:
6) Be Short and Sweet
Make your video under 5 minutes. Remember attention
spans are short and people like to browse. So a quick
message will have more impact than a long one.
Email marketing is far from dying. It is transforming!
Use these 6 basics to get started in including video in your
emails. See if a little video sparks up your results.
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