The State of the Email Marketing Economy: Whistling Past the Graveyard?

Posted by George Bilbrey 

I spent much of last week at the Messaging Anti-Abuse Work Group (MAAWG) meeting in San Francisco.  As usual, MAAWG was a great chance to catch up with the folks we work with both at Email Service Providers and ISPs.  Here’s the conversation, I heard several times over at the conference between folks from ESPs:

ESP A:  How is business?
ESP B:  Great, we had the strong fourth quarter and Q1 is looking good
ESP A: Yep, us too.

The other thing I’ve heard from a lot of email marketing sources is that they are seeing a lot of customers that are new to the market – that are just starting their email marketign programs.

The experience of the ESPs is very similar to what Return Path is seeing.

So my theory from this is that marketing budgets are being shifted to email marketing.  From an economic perspective this can make since – there are a fair number of stories that say email marketing done right provides the highest ROI.

I hope my theory holds and that we all aren’t just “whistling past the graveyard.”

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About George Bilbrey

George Bilbrey is the founder of the industry’s first deliverability service provider, Assurance Systems, which merged with Return Path in 2003. He is a recognized expert on the subjects of email reputation and deliverability and is active in many industry organizations, including the Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group (MAAWG) and the Online Trust Alliance (OTA). In his role as president of Return Path George is the driving force behind the ongoing innovation of our products and services. Prior to Return Path, George served as Director of Product Management at and as a partner in the telecommunications group at Mercer Management Consulting. He holds a B.A. in economics from Duke University, and an MBA from the Kenan-Flagler School of Business, University of North Carolina.

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