Black Friday marketing: Social rises but direct marketing still dominates

23/11/2018

Despite growing interest in marketing through social platforms, direct marketing that has seen a consistent growth in use in terms of Black Friday Marketing, according to new research.

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Conducted via a series of email marketing tests focused on Black Friday among Mailjet’s database of 648 UK marketers, the research observed marketer interest in using social channels around the shopping day. Facebook (27%) and Instagram (31%) have drawn almost level interest with tried and tested channels such as transactional email (30%) this year.

The research also discovered that:


  • The actual number of emails sent on Black Friday has grown year-on-year by 187% from 2014 to 2017, highlighting an enormous growth in the use of transactional email to drive sales

  • Marketers appear more likely to invest in transactional email to power their efforts around Black Friday than they are to invest in Facebook ads

  • Alongside traditional channels marketers are working on campaigns such as Black Friday with external support across social media (46%), digital marketing (43%), events (35%) and email marketing (33%)


Conducted via a series of email marketing tests focused on Black Friday among Mailjet’s database of 648 UK marketing subscribers, the research observed marketer interest in using social channels such as Facebook (27%) and Instagram (31%) have drawn almost level with tried and tested channels such as transactional email (30%).

However, the actual number of emails sent on Black Friday has grown year-on-year by 187% from 2014 to 2017, highlighting an enormous growth in the use of tactics such as transactional email to drive sales around such a key point in the retail calendar.

Keeping ahead of the curve

Marketers in the UK and France appear more likely to invest in transactional email to power their efforts around Black Friday than they are to invest in Facebook ads. One root cause of this may well be the fact clicks on Facebook advertising fell by as much as 20% in the second quarter of this year.

Michyl Culos, Head of Marketing Communications, Mailjet, comments, “Of course, brands should be engaging with audiences in a considered, personalised way and Facebook has always enabled this. At the same time, 100K followers on Facebook - who may or may not be seeing your posts - is clearly not the same as 100K dedicated newsletter subscribers with an open rate of 30% and an ROI you can count on. It’s also important to remember that, just as social media sophistication has evolved, so has that of other channels such as email and there are new opportunities that marketers should pay attention to.”

The need for better collaboration

It’s clear that brands now have many communication channels to focus on simultaneously. Earlier this year, The State of Collaboration in the Workplace report uncovered that alongside traditional channels (TV, print, radio) marketers are working on campaigns such as Black Friday with external support across social media (46%), digital marketing (43%), events (35%) and email marketing (33%).

With 11 people on average now working on each marketing campaign, the cracks are starting to show, with team members submitting projects without due process (37%), misunderstanding instructions (51%) and making modifications where they shouldn't have (43%).

“Black Friday is one of the biggest days of the year in terms of email volume sent, and we know that teams are under pressure to get this day right”, concludes Michyl Culos. “To really win on a day like Black Friday, CMOs have 2 tasks: the first is reducing barriers that can hinder team collaboration. The second is rethinking their marketing investment to ensure social platforms, although tempting to use, can deliver the kind of ROI they are familiar with from channels like direct marketing.”

The research was conducted using a segment of Mailjet's proprietary database consisting of 25,000 recipients across the UK, USA, France, Spain and Germany.

www.mailjet.com

 

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