Email Marketing and Social Media Marketing both have similar goals. Email marketing focuses on building a mailing list while social media marketing is all about generating a list of followers.
However, contrary to what you might believe, social media marketing isn’t all that great. In fact, when you compare the two, email always comes out on top.
Why? Well, if you keep on reading you will find a few reasons that explain this. It’s well worth focusing on building your email list over social media numbers if you want to promote something to your audience.
#1 Email marketing has a better ROI
ROI stands for return on investment and it relates to the money you put into something compared to what you get out of it. In this case, the money you spend on email marketing will always provide a better return than if you spent the same on social media.
This isn’t just a random statement that’s based on observations – there are facts and data to back it up. According to recent statistics, email marketing provides an average ROI of 4,200% (1). If we were to look at this per dollar spent, it would mean that for every dollar you spend on email marketing, you get $42 back. It’s an absolutely mind-blowing figure, particularly when you look at other digital marketing methods and their ROI.
Specifically, if we were to compare this to social media marketing, there is a staggering difference. Recently, it was figured out that social media sees an average return of $2.80 for every dollar spent (2). This equates to an ROI of 280%. In the grand scheme of things, that’s pretty good as you should always try to aim for around $3 for every dollar spent. However, when compared to email marketing, you can see there’s really no competition.
In essence, your money goes a lot further when you invest it in email marketing. So many people don’t realize this because social media is this new shiny thing that seems incredibly powerful. Yes, there are many benefits of marketing on social channels, but in terms of a return on investment, nothing can hold a candle to good old email.
#2 A Higher Click-Through Rate
First, what is a click-through rate?
In the simplest of terms, a click-through rate is the percentage of impressions that resulted in a click.
If we relate this to email marketing, it would mean the percentage of people who click on a link inside your email after viewing it. For social media, it would be the percentage of people who click on a link you have posted. So, imagine you send an email to 1,000 people and 100 people click it. That’s a CTR of 10%.
Obviously, that’s just a basic example to explain how things work. Unfortunately, your CTR is rarely going to be anywhere near that high! According to data from Mailchimp, the average CTR for emails across all industries is 2.62%. By comparison, Twitter has a CTR of 0.01%. Again, there’s a substantial difference between the two marketing methods!
Sure, you could argue that other social media channels have a much better CTR than Twitter. Facebook does have an impressive CTR of 3.86%, while LinkedIn is 2.15%. But, if you add the three together and get the average, it’s 2%. Plus, that doesn’t even take into account the CTR of other social media platforms – which could be worse than Twitter!
Likewise, certain industries have a much higher email marketing CTR than others. If you have a mailing list for a hobby blog, it can generate a 5% CTR. So, when you take all the industries and different social channels into account, email marketing still results in a higher click-through rate.
Why is this important? Well, the more people you get clicking your links, the more traffic you can divert to your site. In turn, it raises the possibility of generating conversions – which brings us nicely to the final point…
#3 Make More Conversions
Getting someone to click on a link is only one step in the marketing process. What use are all these clicks if you aren’t converting them into something useful? This doesn’t necessarily mean someone clicks on a link in your email and makes a purchase. It could mean they download a free eBook or sign-up for something else. Whatever your goal is, you want to ensure that as many people achieve it as possible.
In terms of percentages, email marketing had an average conversion rate of 15.22% in 2021 (3). Again, that’s the average across all industries and all emails. Comparatively, the average conversion rate for a social media campaign currently sits at around 3% (4).
There is simply no comparison here.
Emails are much better at converting, and part of that is because they offer a more personalized approach. When someone signs up for your mailing list, they’re more inclined to be interested in what you offer. They also receive a notification and clearly see your email. On social media, someone can follow you, but that doesn’t mean they notice your posts. You’re constantly competing against algorithms that could bump other posts above yours, meaning half your followers never notice when you’re sent something.
Overall, email marketing is definitely worth your time and money. It yields a higher ROI, a better CTR, and a better conversion rate. You also have more control over a mailing list than a social media following.
And what happens if the social media platform dies out? It’s happened before – the most recent example is Vine. And MySpace is now a meme. All the time and effort spent growing your following is for nothing. Focus your efforts on generating a long email list and making the most out of it.