There were several lofty predictions for email in 2016! We reviewed five of our favorites and determined where 2016 lived up to the hype and where it fell short.
Prediction #1: Gmail won’t start supporting media queries.
Made by Chad White at Litmus
The email world rejoiced in September when Google announced that Gmail now supports embedded styles and media queries. This change enabled responsive design, interactive content, background images, and more for Gmail users on most clients (Litmus has a handy live ticker that shows which clients are supported and which are not). With Gmail being the #2 email client at over 18% (second only to Apple iPhone) this was probably the biggest industry news in 2016.
Result: PLEASANTLY PROVEN WRONG!
Prediction #2: Hyper-targeted emails will become the norm.
Made by Daniel Codella at ZURB
Email automation tools rolled out several new integrations in 2016, enabling email marketers to incorporate behavior from multiple channels into their sends. We successfully launched several hyper-targeted campaigns for BrightWave clients this year, but they aren’t quite the norm…yet. The foundation is certainly in place and progress towards true 1:1 messaging continues to move at a rapid rate, so (fingers crossed) we could see this prediction come true in 2017!
Result: IN PROGRESS
Prediction #4: Email templates will finally offer limitless control.
Made by Elliot Ross at Action Rocket
Modular template design made huge strides in 2016. BrightWave rolled out several modular templates that reduce design and coding time significantly, resulting in time savings that reduce costs and time-to-market. Coupled with the advances in marketing automation and decisioning, email templates now offer virtually limitless control. Now that modular design can accommodate infinite variations of dynamic and personalized content, the last roadblock in the way of true data-driven content is the data itself.
Prediction #4: Interactive emails will elevate brand experiences.
Made by Justin Khoo at FreshInbox
2016 was the year for kinetic email design! We (quite enthusiastically) launched several campaigns that incorporated kinetic elements to provide a more engaging interactive experience. Campaign results proved that interactive emails can elevate brand experiences when used thoughtfully. Engagement continued outside of the inbox for these campaigns, as we observed more time spent on landing experiences and increased conversion rates.
Prediction #5: Email campaigns will predict the content you want.
Made by Kath Pay at Holistic Email Marketing
Machine learning technology continued to make lots of progress this year, increasing our ability to provide true predictive content in the inbox. Data integrations, dynamic content, and predictive tools are growing rapidly resulting in highly personalized messaging that maximizes relevancy. As predictive algorithms continue to listen and learn from customer behavior, the content served will increase in personal relevancy with more and more accurate predictions.