Email marketing volumes are at an all-time high, and content marketers need to create campaigns to maintain competitive edge.

With all the talk about social media marketing and content creation for the web, discussions surrounding email marketing can seem few and far between, but the marketing channel grew substantially in 2012, especially in the retail industry. The amount of email sent by retailers in 2012 jumped by 19 percent, according to Responsys’ Retail Email Blog, showing that this sect of content marketing continues to gain traction. So many messages are circulating through cyberspace that brands must develop email marketing campaigns that give brands a competitive edge.

A flood of email, email, email

Unsurprisingly, the greatest number of emails was sent in December 2012, just as consumers sought to buy for friends and family. In the final month of 2012, brands sent out an average of 25 emails, compared to 22 emails in 2011 and 18 in 2010. 

Additionally, 93 percent of major online retailers sent subscribers an email on Cyber Monday. It became the busiest email marketing day of the year. According to Responsys, retailers increased the amount of emails they send by 120 percent since 2007.

Most messages come from marketers

There’s no question that the use of email marketing as a channel for engagement and customer retention is flourishing, so much so that 43 percent of U.S. adults reported that more than half of their email messages came from marketers, according to a survey by Blue Kangaroo. With so many emails and promotions landing in inboxes, marketers must create relevant, custom content, engaging headlines and worthwhile material to ensure that email marketing efforts pay off. The high volume of promotional content in internet users’ inboxes demonstrates the power of an email-friendly approach, but also shows the need for brands to stick out from the pack with creative strategies.

Emma Siemasko is a former member of Brafton's editorial team. Emma has experience with blogging, travel writing, industry news, SEO and content marketing. She used to live in South Korea, where she mastered the art of using metal chopsticks.