Report: The death of email has been greatly exaggerated

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By: RickFerguson |

Posted on March 29, 2016

Conventional wisdom tells us that Millennials and Gen-Z teens don't acknowledge the existence of any message that doesn't arrive via social media, and that they think of email as something that their parents use. For personal communications, this is no doubt true. But according to a new study from digital marketing provider Adestra, when it comes to brand communications, the hoary old email in-box still reigns supreme.

The Adestra survey asked more than 1,200 respondents from teenagers to Baby Boomers how they interact with, and think about, the email messages they receive. The big revelation: teens and Millennials use email. A lot. Of course they text and engage with their friends via social media, but when it comes to communicating with brands and organisations, email reigns supreme.

According to the study, nearly 68% of teens and 73% of Millennials said they prefer to receive communication from a business via email. In addition, more than half rely on email to buy items online. Not surprisingly, the same holds true for Gen X and Baby Boomers. Money quote from Ryan Phelan, VP of marketing insights for Adestra:

"For the last few years, it's been widely assumed that email would fade away because Millennials and teens weren't going to use it. It turns out that the opposite is true. Email continues to be part of everyday life across all age groups, with consumers literally hanging out in their inboxes all day long."

Demographically-inclined marketers might think that device is the one big difference brand message consumption, with Boomers and Gen-X consumers reading emails on their desktops and laptops while Millennials consume via smart phone. Au contraire: Across all age groups, 86% of consumers surveyed say they use their smartphones for email communication (that number is, however, even higher for teens and Millennials). And 48% of teens and 44% of Millennials reach for those smartphones to check messages right after turning off the alarm clock.

For a copy of the full report, as well as more expert analysis and insight from Adestra, click here.

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