Gmail Introduced ‘Promotions’ Tab: Death of Email Marketing?

Gmail Promotions Tab: How can e-mail marketers remain relevant?

Earlier this month, Google rolled out the dreaded system that hides commercial messages into a separate tab. Marketers are concerned that their promotional e-mails will not reach their audience. While the long-term impact has yet to be seen, I’m on the ‘this-is-a-positive-change’ camp.

Marketers need to realize that the goal of e-mail marketing is not to appear on top of everything. It doesn’t matter whether a flyer is at the top or bottom of my mailbox, whether it’s chucked at the front door or gets delivered right to my desk. If it’s not relevant to me, they end up in my dustbin all the same.

Good promotional e-mails aim to get read and call the readers into action, and this is why the ‘Promotions’ tab is more of a friend than a foe.

Consumers do look forward to your promotions
(and if they don’t, you’re probably doing it wrong to begin with!)

Yes, they do. But they get annoyed when they have to skim through 82 e-mails every morning to get to that important correspondence which calls for urgent response. Under the old Gmail system, it’s intrusive and readers would rather delete the promotional emails right away so that they can work efficiently.

What’s good about the newly-introduced ‘Promotions’ tab is that people are now more engaged with your promotional e-mails. You don’t have to compete with personal e-mails and social network updates any longer. More importantly, they’ll be reading your mails when they are in the ‘buying mood’.

Worried about the people who never clicked on the ‘Promotions’ tab? Well, they’re the same people who never read all your past offers anyway.

Promotions ≠ Spam. So while your discounts and loyalty programs are reaching to less eyeballs, you’ll be glad to find out that you’re getting more engagement, and from the right people who are more likely to reach their wallets for you. Sounds like a win-win to me.

What do you think? Is the new Gmail feature good or bad for marketers?

[Image Credit: Keith Ramsey]


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