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Email Remains Top ROI Driver in Marketing, According to DMA’s 2017 Response Rate Report

NEW YORK CITY — The Data & Marketing Association (DMA) released today its 2017 Response Rate Report, which finds that programmatic advertising and mobile payments are the leading technologies being adopted by marketers today (32% and 31% of respondents, respectively), with both virtual reality (VR) and beacon technology lagging behind (only 7% and 4% of those surveyed are leveraging these for their marketing efforts).

“Data-driven marketers are actively testing the latest marketing technologies,” said Neil O’Keefe, DMA’s SVP of Content & Marketing. “But the ability to generate results is what determines if new tech is a flash in the pan or a new marketing mainstay. We’ve found that marketers continue to have reliable methods of generating revenue – in channels such as email and social media – while they aggressively test potential additions to their marketing mix.”

The report also found that email marketing remains a top profit generator for marketers, with 50% planning to increase their usage of email in the coming 12 months. Email’s cost-per-acquisition (CPA) at $10.32 is the lowest of all media types in the study. The consumer shift toward mobile has only solidified email’s essential role in the marketing mix, with 81% reporting mobile email open rates are the same or higher than desktop open rates.

Additional Findings

  • Online display’s ROI and response rate has fallen to last place among all media channels, despite a 16% increase in usage.
  • Paid search demonstrated the highest increase in response of digital channels. It also posted the second-largest increase in usage, jumping from 37% to 55%.
  • Social media registered the largest year-over-year increase in usage (from 47% to 69%), and is the favored channel for driving brand awareness. (The 2016 report found that social media was the best-performing mobile marketing channel.)
  • The average number of marketing channels in use has jumped from to 3.4 from 2.7, with only 11% of marketers using only one medium.

“Marketers are competing in the channels their customers prefer,” added O’Keefe. “The returns demonstrated in this report show that today’s marketer and today’s consumer are both omnichannel animals, and that marketers continue to build valuable relationships with their customers across a number of platforms.”

Report Methodology

DMA’s 2017 Response Rate Report is based on data from an online survey deployed from February 2017 until May 2017. Respondents come from the DMA and Demand Metric communities, and received an incentive for completing the survey as described in the Methodology chapter of this report. A total of 592 responses were collected. The survey experienced a 41 percent completion rate.

About DMA ( Founded in 1917 and driving the data and marketing agenda for a full century, the Data & Marketing Association (“DMA”) champions deeper consumer engagement and business value through the innovative and responsible use of data-driven marketing. DMA’s brand-leading membership is made up of over 1,400 organizations that are today’s innovative tech and data firms, marketers, agencies, service providers and media companies. By representing the entire marketing ecosystem—demand side and supply side—and engaging more than 100,000 industry professionals annually, DMA is uniquely positioned to convene and guide the industry to bring win/win solutions to the market, and ensure that innovative and disruptive marketing technology and techniques can be quickly applied for ROI.

DMA advances the data-driven marketing industry and serves its members through four principal pillars of leadership: advocating for marketers’ ability to responsibly gather and refine detailed data to identify and fulfill customer needs and interests; innovating to bring solutions forward to the data & marketing ecosystem’s most vexing challenges; educating today’s members of the data & marketing ecosystem to grow and lead marketing organizations in the ever-increasing omnichannel world; and connecting industry participants to stay current, learn best practices and gain access to emerging solutions through &THEN – the largest global event for data-driven marketing – and DMA’s portfolio of other live events.