Guest Post: Using Video in Email Marketing: To Video or Not to Video?

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At first glance, video content seems like a perfect solution to a reader-engagement problem. It’s still the fastest-growing online trend. People simply love the emotional engagement of video. Emails that contain Video content have better open and click-through rates, drive more sales conversions, and improve engagement. And yet, few brands include video in email marketing. Why?

Operational Challenges

For many years using Video in Email marketing was virtually impossible. Marketers faced mounting obstacles: file sizes too large for some inboxes, poor video rendering, and the need for third-party plug-ins that cause email server security issues.

All these have a huge negative impact on deliverability and user experience.

The HTML5 solution

Marketers have gradually embraced HTML5 open standard.

It’s built into all modern web browsers and an increasing number of email clients. So adding Video in Emails using the HTML5 <video> tag is now quick and easy.

HTML5 can replace all third-party plug-ins used to add Video in Emails, eliminating most obstacles affecting email deliverability, security and user experience.HTML5 video email

Compatibility Concerns

Most major obstacles have been significantly reduced. Signals indicate videos in email make a positive impact on user engagement. An increasing number of email clients support it.

Unfortunately, most Web browsers and Web-based email clients (gmail, AOL mail, Outlook 2010, Yahoo!Mail) don’t support Video in Email marketing.

Still, 30% of your subscribers can view them, and this number is bound to grow, due to the incredible popularity of video.

Email clients that can display video in the body of the email:
iOS devices (iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch)
Hotmail, when viewed in an HTML5 compliant web browser
IE 9+
Chrome 3+
Firefox 3.5+
Safari 3.1+ on desktop, and 3.0+ (iOS)
Apple Mail 3, 4
Outlook for Mac 2011

Give Subscribers Alternatives

The good news is that HTML5 can display a list of possible media formats. This enables the email recipient to choose the best-supported format when opening the email.

Some email clients don’t allow Video in Email. But most of them can display an animated GIF or static image as a fallback — to reduce the risk of poor user experience.

So if you’re not quite ready to take on the challenges of video, try implementing animated GIFs in your emails . This technique is already in use and proven effective in existing video distribution channels.

Worth a Try?

Video in Email Marketing is still new and requires testing. So before you jump on the bandwagon, makes sure it’s right for you.

Implementing Video in Email is very doable. So run an email campaign to test email client compatibility and evaluate campaign performance.

If it works for you, you may have struck gold.

The following is a Guest post by Magdalena Pietras of GetResponse. Get Response lets you create stunning newsletters and landing pages in minutes. Try it today!

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