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Published on October 14th, 2009 | by Janine Popick

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Email Being Replaced by Social Networks? Not So Fast Wall St. Journal

WSJ Why Email No Longer Rules...The Wall Street Journal recently published the story, Why Email No Longer Rules. The writer, Jessica E. Vascellaro, talks a lot about the increasing number of people jumping on the social media bandwagon, and how that could have a negative effect on the way people use email today. Are people jumping on the social media bandwagon? You betcha! And why not? It’s free, easy to use, and you can communicate to the masses. But are they using email less? Nielsen doesn’t seem to think so in some recent research they’ve done.

So I started thinking about how this is the antithesis of what we’ve been seeing in our own customers businesses, and I really wanted to write about it. However, ME writing about it seems somewhat self-serving, since well, I run an email marketing company.

Then I got an EMAIL forwarded to me that Chris Crum over at WebProNews had come to the rescue and already wrote about all of the things I’ve been thinking about relating to how consumers are using email and social media.

So here is Chris’s story “10 Reasons Social Media isn’t Replacing Email.”

I decided to add my own $.02 about how marketers feel about this article: 10 More Reasons Why Social Media Won’t Replace Email.

11. Twitter and Facebook are fantastic products and companies; but that’s what they are, companies. Even though email is host to 279 million users vs. 301 million users of social media according to Nielsen, email isn’t going anywhere soon with many companies offering it as a service. Twitter and Facebook are just two companies that likely make up most of the social media users.

12. Your email recipients are still going to use business email for business purposes. They’ll not likely let their boss know that they’ve finished the spreadsheet and are ready for the meeting now by posting to Twitter. If they don’t use their business email address they probably also have a personal email account that they like to receive your email-only specials.

13. You can’t easily segment your friends and followers to do targeted marketing in Twitter & Facebook for the optimal response.

14. You can’t tell who clicked on a link with some social media outlets so that you can follow up with them again because they might be interested in your content.

15. That said, you can’t tell who didn’t click on the link so you can follow up with them with a different message trying to get them to take action.

16. You cannot personalize your Facebook updates. This has been proven to boost response in any marketing campaign you do.

17. You cannot size your graphics or use more than one in Facebook. You can’t use them at all in Twitter. Graphics help tell a story.

18. You can’t track how many clicks you got on your links in Facebook unless you use a third party URL shortener.

19. You are limited to 140 characters in Twitter leaving it impossible to put multiple messages in one Tweet.

20. You almost have to have separate social media accounts for your business and your personal life. Some customers might not care about that vacation you took where you…let’s just say what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.

Am I against the use of social media as a marketing tool? Hell no! I love it. I’ve written about how Twitter & email marketing work together, and I’ve written how to use Facebook to grow your email lists. I’ve also written about how to post your email marketing campaign to your Twitter and Facebook pages to get more readers of your newsletters because I feel that these are two mediums that complement each other very nicely. Why? Because no one is going away from email anytime soon, and people are using social media as well. What are you seeing?

© 2009 – 2013, Janine Popick. All rights reserved.

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