Vivek Sharma, CEO of Movable Ink shares his thoughts on how Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning will have vital roles in email marketing next year.

Email is poised to retain its long-standing reign as the workhorse of digital marketing into 2018. Contrary to annual predictions that “this year will be the death of email,” the next 12 months will see the channel continue to grow and evolve as marketers adopt smarter strategies and technology that allows for greater personalization and better customer experiences.

While email is not dead or dying, its continued success will rely on marketers’ ability to stay relevant and connect with customers who care more about experiences and how a product fits into their lifestyle than the actual product itself. We believe that email marketers will continue to shift strategies away from the old concept of offer management towards deeper and more meaningful personalisation. 

This year, brands continued to invest in more sophisticated behavior-based strategies and technology to create experiences and emotional stories around their products and services, and this trend will keep going in 2018.
All that said, the ability to generate personalized experiences at scale will continue as a big challenge for email marketers in 2018. To achieve this, AI and machine learning will play an increasing role in email marketing. For example, computers are finally starting to understand what brand images are about – inferring metadata from unstructured visual content. The beauty of machine learning is that it can study the customer and select the image and content that would likely appeal to them.

Machine learning will help creative teams make emails more persuasive and personalized, more responsive and more relevant. It will help them respond to real-time events, and develop new brand experiences through design. Machine learning will be the essential capability in leveraging vast amounts of data from multiple sources (websites, blogs, social channels, partners, etc.) and customer behaviors to generate content that’s optimized for every customer at any moment.

This increased adoption of machine learning techniques and technologies are one big thing that will happen in 2018 and will help brands get more performance out the creative in their email campaigns. We believe the future is bright for email marketing and AI and machine learning will help marketers develop wholly new abilities. As with audience and offer management, content and its visual presentation will provide fertile ground for email innovation through AI.