Email marketing or social media marketing; which one is better? With so many consumers on social media these days, many are wondering if email marketing is still effective.

Over the past decade, social media visitors have grown at an exponential rate. t is clear that social media is not just a fad, and that it is worth utilizing. In fact, 83% of marketers 83% of all marketers actively pursue social media marketing initiatives.

In light of these trends, some marketers are wondering, is social media going to replace email?

Let’s examine both channels using the under listed measures.

ROI

When asked what the most important measurement to gauge the effectiveness of any given channel is, most marketers agreed that the overall return on investment (ROI) is the most important. A marketer is result oriented and wants to discover which platform drives more customer engagement, click-throughs, and conversions.

Don’t be surprised but email beats Social media in a landslide here. On the average, one in five marketing emails gets opened, with a click-through rate of 3.57%, while on Facebook; you can expect a click-through rate of a measly 0.07%. Clearly, if you’re trying to market as efficiently as possible, email is the way to go. In fact, of all the marketing strategies you can adopt, email marketing has the highest ROI. After all, business is all about return on investment and the cost of opportunity.

 

REACH

As a marketer embarking on any campaign, you obviously want to get your message out to as many people as possible. Email dominates in this area again. It has been around longer than social media, and it’s used for various purposes, so it naturally has a bigger user base. The Radicati Group estimated that by the end of 2017, more than 3.7 billion people worldwide will use email.

By contrast, Facebook, which is far and away the most popular social media platform, sees “only” 1.9 billion unique visitors every month. Two of the other most popular networks, Instagram and Twitter, have 600 million and 317 million visitors every month, respectively.

People also tend to check their email more frequently than they do social media. In fact, more than half of internet users (58%) check their email first thing in the morning – before looking at Facebook, doing a Google search, and almost 9 out of 10 email users check their inbox at least once a day. With numbers like that, the odds that your subscribers will see your marketing emails are pretty good.

Your odds of getting noticed on social media, on the other hand? Not quite so good, even if you have an equal number of email subscribers and social media followers. Why is this? It has to do with social media algorithms. Users don’t see every single post, tweet, and pin from the people and businesses they follow because there are simply too many updates to fit on an average news feed. On Facebook, for instance, you can only count on about 6% of your fan base seeing anything you post according to Social Ogilvy.

 

ENGAGEMENT AND VIRALITY

Experts agree that social media has a higher engagement rate than email. Sharing content on social media channels results in higher traffic on your blog and website. This will surely build your brand. It is a major advantage Social media has over email. It offers the possibility of going viral. Your posts aren’t restricted to your own network of followers, so if someone shares your content, a certain number of their followers will see it too. Social media channels like Facebook have access to a wealth of third-party data. This data allows you to reach a uniquely targeted group of consumers who are most likely to be interested in your product or service. When it comes to email marketing, you can only reach your current email list. Unless your post is shared, the same goes for organic social media posts. However, with social media ads, you can reach brand new audiences.

57% of global content sharing activities occurred via Facebook and 18% occurred via Twitter, whereas email only accounted for 4%. See table below.

COMBINING BOTH

When it comes to promoting your sales, email marketing, and social media ads don’t need to be rivals. In fact, there is no reason why you cannot use them both together to reach your sales goals.

The key to getting the most out of your marketing budget is knowing when to use each tactic to optimize your impact. Social media is a great tool for reaching new audiences, engaging individuals and gauging interest in promotions. On the other hand, email marketing can help you engage with those who have a direct interest in your brand as well as users who don’t have social media accounts on the platforms you use.

For your next marketing campaign, use email and social media marketing together and see the magic at work.