“Email is huge,” said Kristen Frey, director, audience and digital revenue for News-Press & Gazette Company, during a Monday afternoon breakout session at the inaugural meeting of America's Newspapers.
In 2017, 269 billion emails were sent and received each day. That number is expected to reach over 333 billion daily emails in 2022.
“So why are we not taking advantage of this opportunity to get in front of eyeballs?” asked Frey.
The News-Press & Gazette Company currently is experimenting with a variety of emails, including Sunday Open Houses, Daily Obits, Coupons and Contests/Promotion.
The fastest growing email: the Birthday Club, which offers coupons to local restaurants and venues to readers on their birthday. The list started at 3,000 emails and has grown to over 13,000.
The Observer Media Group in Florida has found its own success with emails focused on daily headlines, business news, arts and entertainment and a weekly wrap up.
One key takeaway from their testing: use every opportunity to augment your internal first-party data.
“We have a signup box on every page of the website. We have all email options pre-checked on the form,” said Emily Walsh, chief digital officer and publisher, Observer Media Group, Inc. “We have a pop-up if you’re about to leave [the site] and haven’t signed up.”