Advertising Strategies and Lessons


The Growth & Popularity Of Email Marketing And How CPM Campaigns Secure Premium Space

April 1, 2019 Kathy Bryan

An estimated $3.07 billion will be spent on email marketing in the U.S. this year as almost every company uses the email channel to reach the 251.8 million email users in the U.S.

Email Marketing Is Prevalent Because It Works

Email marketing usage is at 100% for the healthcare/pharmaceutical and travel/hospitality industries, according to Statista data, and other industries don’t trail far behind. That’s because promotional emails are an effective form of marketing. In fact, more than one-quarter of consumers say promotional emails are “extremely influential” or “very influential” and more than three-quarters of consumers say promotional emails are at least “a little influential.”

Email Marketing Engages & Converts Consumers

Unlike TV commercials that air during bathroom breaks or display ads that can be ignored as website visitors scroll, email messages occupy dedicated screen space. With open rates for certain industries nearing 50%, email marketing is successful at capturing the attention of those who receive the messages. And because campaigns can be tightly targeted, email is also one of the most effective channels for achieving conversions ― especially for Millennial shoppers.

Email Marketing’s Success Has Created A Crowded Channel

Email is a top channel for influencing online shoppers, with only user-generated content and search engines estimated by eMarketer as more effective. As a result, approximately half of marketers believe the ROI for email marketing is “good” or “excellent.” With 293.6 billion emails sent and received every day worldwide and marketing budgets increasing each year for email, the channel has become crowded due to its effectiveness.

Performance-Based Email Campaigns Can Massively Scale Results

Email marketing includes campaigns sent to company-owned databases, outreach to borrowed or purchased databases and performance-based campaigns that leverage the databases of others. Performance-based email marketing campaigns, facilitated by performance networks like W4, can make use of one or multiple databases to massively scale send volume and results.

Email marketing is often paid for on a performance basis. However, due to increased demand for brand control, including messaging, appearance and time of send, CPM (cost per 1,000 sends) email campaigns have grown in popularity.

CPM Email Puts Brands In Charge

Unlike performance-based email campaigns, which often leverage remnant inventory, CPM email campaigns typically let marketers specify a long list of campaign parameters.

Marketers Using CPM Email Campaigns Benefit In The Following Ways:

  • Emails are sent to premium and new inventory, often only available to CPM campaigns.
  • Email drops can be scheduled for precise days to align with other campaign elements, including TV ads, search campaigns and display media buys.
  • Call centers can be appropriately staffed, because it is easier to predict when inbound calls from email campaigns will be coming.
  • Transparent reporting, inclusive of send volume, open rates and click-through rates (CTRs), help optimize campaigns.
  • Revenue is easier to forecast, because email marketing results can be more accurately predicted.
  • Creative approval prior to email sends help mitigate compliance concerns.

CPM Email Marketing

CPM Email Marketing Sidesteps Many Ad-Tech Related Fraud Concerns

Ad fraud, including invalid traffic, has become a real concern for many digital marketers. According to a recent report from Pixalate, the average ad fraud rate for programmatic traffic in Q4 2018 was 21% in the U.S. Unlike programmatic display campaigns, with CPM email marketing campaigns, pre-approved content is sent to pre-defined audiences at pre-defined times with transparent reporting to clearly outline campaign success.

CPM Email Campaigns Benefit Future Performance-Based Email Campaigns

According to Kimberlee White, Vice President of Brand Partnerships at W4, “CPM email marketing can be a fantastic method of testing new campaign assets, including promotions, messaging and creative.” With refined campaigns and solid metrics defined, many CPM email marketers evolve their campaigns into performance-based email marketing. With proven campaign performance, many marketers are able to negotiate lower payouts than they otherwise would be able to secure. “I’ve seen a long roster of brands lower their acquisition costs by testing assets with CPM email campaigns before the launched performance-based email campaigns,” said White.

Email Is The Channel Consumers Want Brands To Use To Reach Them

Email is, by far, the channel consumers prefer to be used when brands are communicating to them ― particularly when they are being given “additional incentives to purchase.” Especially for legal services, travel and not-for-profit, three of the industries with the strongest email marketing ROI, the demand for email impressions is predicted to grow. Leveraging strategies that secure premium space and audiences – such as CPM pricing – can help brands grow awareness and revenue with email marketing.

Reimagining Your Email Marketing Win?

Contact Digital Media Solutions today.

About the Author

Kathy Bryan

Kathy Bryan is the Chief Marketing Officer at Digital Media Solutions (DMS). In this role, Kathy is responsible for all aspects of marketing and communications for DMS, the leading global martech company leveraging innovative, performance-driven brand and marketplace solutions to connect consumers and advertisers.

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