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Email marketing trends to supercharge your email program in 2024

2024 will bring new changes to the way we do email and we’re here to help you get ready. Check out these email marketing trends for 2024 to make sure your email program is all set for the new year.

Hermes on a rocket flying over a New Year’s celebration with fireworks

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Another year, another set of predictions of what the world of email marketing will hold over the next twelve months.

After a period of major technological advancements and looming threats to humanity in the form of crazy AI developments, what will 2024 hold for email senders worldwide? Will we succumb to technology once and for all, or will we learn how to live with it and come out on top?

From higher privacy-awareness in data management to better deliverability and increased customer-centric email campaigns, we recap the email marketing trends and predictions that will shape 2024. Read on!

More maturity in the use of AI

Remember when we said 2023 would be the year of AI domination? Well, guess what? That’s exactly what we got.

The past year has been a whirlwind of AI excitement, with everyone racing to achieve more, faster. In fact, according to a study on AI penetration conducted by McKinsey & co, over one third of organizations were already using AI in at least one function by April 2023, with many others expecting to increase AI investment in the following months.

In 2024, we'll be moving from this gold rush mentality to a more refined and mature approach to email AI. The current overreliance on ChatGPT will give way to a smarter choice of AI tools and features that genuinely enhance how we craft and send emails.Think AI writing assistants, subject line generators, and even AI template builders – all designed to elevate our email game.

“AI has become an increasingly valuable ally that helps organizations run their email programs. We’ve seen brands leverage ChatGPT and other tools to speed up their work and get more creative. In 2024, though, AI features will become even more sophisticated and will enable email senders to efficiently test different types of messaging, build email templates, and craft engaging subject lines that truly resonate with their audience.”

Stephanie Watson, Senior Product Manager at Sinch Mailjet

More customer-centric email communications

With more email being sent every year – especially around peak times – how can brands stay top of mind for consumers? The answer lies in customer-centric, hyper-relevant communications.

For too long, companies have been focused on what they want to share with their audience. But as we look into 2024, organizations will need to move beyond these brand-centric messages and focus more on meeting customer expectations. The key will be in understanding customer pain points and connecting them to the company’s service offering, making communications much more relevant through advanced personalization and segmentation techniques.

But in 2024, customer-centricity will go beyond messaging. Providing a great customer experience will also require giving customers choice of the type of messages they want to receive and channels they want to be contacted through.

Start your journey

Make your customer the hero of your brand communications

Find out how to use the hero’s journey to create a more customer-centric communications strategy across every marketing channel.

Increased focus on email authentication

Late in 2023, Gmail and Yahoo brought some seismic shifts to the email realm: A fresh set of requirements for bulk email senders aimed at reshaping and improving the inbox experience for users.

These changes, scheduled to come into effect early in 2024, will force senders to get serious about email authentication. And while DKIM and SPF adoption has been on the uptick since Gmail started requiring some form of authentication in 2022, DMARC authentication has been the slowpoke. In Sinch Mailgun's State of email deliverability 2023, only around 40% of senders stated they’d implemented this protocol.

State of Email Deliverability data on DMARC adoption

DMARC adoption has been slow, according to our 2023 State of email deliverability report.

But that is going to have to change, fast. DKIM and SPF are already non-negotiables for bulk senders, and now the spotlight is moving to DMARC, which is set to become even more widely adopted during 2024.

Need help setting up your email authentication protocols? Check out our DKIM, SPF, and DMARC content to learn more.

Stricter data management practices

The Gmail and Yahoo changes are also ushering in a new consent-focused era, forcing senders to facilitate easy unsubscribes and to keep a close eye on spam rates.

And it’s not just mailbox providers steering the ship on how we think about customer data. States and governing bodies worldwide are tightening the screws on data protection, especially in the US, where 16 states have introduced privacy bills during the 2022-2023 legislative cycle.

As we move into 2024, organizations are also waking up to the importance of user consent and stricter data management practices. In the year ahead, we expect double opt-in subscription forms that properly capture user data and landing pages that highlight the value of a brand’s email program to be even more important.

Stronger customer data protection to prevent phishing attacks

Stricter data management practices will also require a renewed focus on how we keep customer data safe.

In a world where cybercrimes and data threats lurk around every digital corner, brands will need to focus on building trust in the inbox and enhancing platform security. Even more so now that AI is helping phishers cast a wider net. Implementing authentication methods like BIMI to mitigate the impact of phishing attacks will be more important than ever before.

Mobile devices with and without inbox logos

With BIMI, the company’s logo displays in the inbox, providing extra trust for email recipients.

In 2024, we also expect to see more brands enforcing multi-factor authentication on their platforms and leveraging multichannel verification (including email, SMS, and flash calls) to protect accounts, providing users with the flexibility to choose the best way to confirm their identities.

Increased simplicity in email campaigns

When it comes to email design, there are also notable changes on the horizon.

In 2024, we’ll see a shift towards email simplicity that will go beyond the aesthetics – it will be a strategic move to cut through the digital noise and engage users in a more authentic way.

Customers are craving more human connections, and brands are starting to take note. There’s no denying there’s a desire for more authenticity in the inbox, and text-based emails that harness the power of personalization are a marketer’s best friend to achieve that. The end goal? To replicate the intimacy of one-on-one conversations.

As email experts Naomi West and Emily Ryan pointed out during Email Camp 2023, finding the right balance between design-heavy emails and plain-text messages will require thorough testing and a nuanced understanding of user preferences.

More interactivity in email design

But we’re not implying email designers should always play it safe with plain-text emails. In fact, the goal of great email design should be to elevate customer experience, and sometimes there’s no better way to do that than adding interactivity to your campaigns.

Designing interactive emails isn’t easy, even for the most advanced email developers, which probably explains its relatively slow adoption. But it’s picking up pace amidst the ruthless competition in the inbox.

Sinch Email on Acid’s Valentine’s Day email

At Sinch Email, we love pushing boundaries with email design. Check out this Valentine’s Day email we sent to Email on Acid subscribers.

Email interactivity can be an absolute game-changer for grabbing your audience's attention and nudging them to act, all without them leaving the inbox.

As we move into 2024, the user experience will take center stage in the email design playbook. It’s time to get ready – this year, interactivity will rise as the most valuable way to improve the inbox experience, increase engagement, and push your audience to take action.

“Interactive emails offer a huge potential for marketers looking to increase email engagement. By providing the ability for recipients to take action directly within the email, interactivity helps companies stand out in the inbox. Not only do brands set themselves apart from competitors, but these types of emails create a stronger relationship with their customers overall.”

Megan Boshuyzen, Sr. Email Developer at Sinch Email

Stronger relationship between email and SMS

Let’s be honest – if brands want to build strong relationships with their customers, there’s no escaping an omnichannel communication strategy. In 2024, organizations will have to focus more on meeting their audience across various touchpoints, with email and SMS likely the first step in that journey.

Email is still the top choice for brand communications, but it’s no longer flying solo. Our 2023 email engagement survey confirmed text messaging as the second choice for both promotional messages and transactional notifications.

Graph featuring channel preferences for brand communications

Channel preferences from our latest email engagement survey. Keep an eye out for the full report coming in Q1 2024!

In 2024, we anticipate brands will continue to push for more aligned communication strategies, where customer data is synced, and consumer preferences respected. Email will continue to act as the cornerstone of brand communications, but SMS will step in strategically to boost engagement during peak times and to support specific transactional needs.

A strong start to 2024

We get it – staying ahead of the curve with email trends seems hard.

But you don't need to implement everything at once. The secret sauce for stellar email marketing programs is in testing, experimenting, and letting your curiosity and innovation shine.

The good news? At Sinch Mailjet, we’ve got a range of innovative tools and features to help you do just that – everything you need to design, send, track, and optimize your email campaigns in one single platform. Whatever your email demands, we've got the perfect product for you.

And hey, it's not just about tools – we're also on a mission to share our email expertise with the world! Dive into the Sinch Mailjet blog and resources and join our newsletter to stay in the email loop.

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