SMBs are in need of some serious assistance with their email marketing activities, which could present an excellent growth opportunity for MSPs serving this market. At least these are the conclusions which can be drawn from a recent study by email marketing platform provider GetResponse.

According to “The State of Email Marketing in SMBs,” medium-sized businesses of 251 to500 employees only have a 73 percent success rate in their general email marketing activities. This rate drops to 64 percent among businesses with 11 to 250 employees and only 53 percent among businesses with 1 to 10 employees.

Most SMBs Don’t Outsource Email Marketing

GetResponse analysis indicates that a frequent lack of email marketing outsourcing on the part of SMBs is a major driver of this poor email marketing performance. SMBs usually do not have significant in-house know how, resources, budget or staff to devote to email marketing. This means that without the help of MSPs, most SMBs must make already busy employees multitask on email marketing activities, while lacking the ability to invest in education or new marketing strategies or solutions that might improve email marketing performance.

Add in that SMBs often do not prioritize email marketing as much as larger companies, and you have a recipe for frequent email marketing failures in this group of businesses.

Email Marketing is Critical

Considering the rise of new digital marketing channels such as social media and mobile, some MSPs may assume that the email marketing channel is on its way out and thus not worthy of focus, especially for SMB clients who are already so far behind leading-edge practices. But this is a dangerously false assumption.

Email marketing may not be quite as important as it was 10 years ago, but email remains one of the primary means of business communication, and is probably even more important for SMBs who often themselves serve SMB customers that may not be actively communicating via social media or mobile platforms.

However, email marketing has moved far beyond the old-fashioned strategy of compiling an address list and sending out a blast. To avoid having their email messages steered toward a spam folder or deleted without being opened, SMBs must engage in practices such as segmentation, pruning of inactive addresses, split testing, and detailed follow-up analysis. The survey shows SMBs have generally low participation rates in these and other modern email marketing practices, with participation dwindling as the number of employees drops.

MSPs Can Deliver Email Marketing Success

Rather than seeing low rates of email marketing outsourcing among SMBs as a challenge, MSPs should view them as an opportunity to break ground in an untapped market. Demonstrate to SMBs how and why an investment in managed email marketing services can affordably turn the email communication channel into a generator of profits and new customers. If email marketing does die out among SMBs, it will not be the fault of email technology or the SMBs, but the MSPs who failed to take advantage of a market primed for development.