Email marketing is one of the most evergreen retail tactics. It's also one of the most targeted forms of messaging since recipients opt-in and often provide solicited information or preferences. Despite these factors, personalization can still be hit or miss.
An April 2018 Evergage and Researchscape International study found email content was by far the channel that more US marketers personalized, cited by 71% of respondents. Personalizing home pages (45%) and landing pages (37%) were a distant second and third.
When asked how email was personalized, 76% of respondents said they use a first name in the message or subject line. Just over half recommend products based on audience segment, while one-quarter suggest products on an individual basis.
According to a May 2018 survey by Fresh Relevance and YouGov, 28% of US internet users would be more loyal to a brand if email messages were personalized. But they have high standards as to what counts as personalization. Fully 35% don't think marketers using their first names is important.
What do consumers want in an email? The Fresh Relevance/YouGov study found one-quarter like product recommendations based on past purchases or items viewed online, while 26% want marketers to recognize when they buy an item for someone else to prevent unrelated recommendations. Generally, 41% would consider not patronizing a retailer that routinely emailed irrelevant information.