I have to admit that the way Google has positioned AMP For Email and how they pumped it up in the marketplace is pretty darn cool. AMP stands for Accelerated Mobile Pages and it brings a whole new level of interactivity to email that email marketers have been dreaming of and trying to develop for years. Ever since Google introduced it last year, I have thought about how companies could take advantage of it’s capabilities once it was made available to the general email marketer. While it does come with a few restrictions, the notion of making the inbox more interactive and engaging is extremely compelling.
When Google made the “wide” announcement last week, many tech publications touted it as “transformative”, and a “rebirth.” Even one company made a bold statement by calling it a “game changer” for email marketing. On the surface, there is a lot to like about AMP for Email, and I can see why people are excited.
- Allows email marketers to create interactive emails which enables the subscriber to do things inside the inbox like:
- Submit an RSVP
- Fill out or schedule appointments
- Embed surveys/questionnaires
- Interact on a whole new level within the email to allow the subscriber to choose how and what to search
- Turns ordinary emails into personalized content machines that mimics the app or website behavior.
- Blends the Holy Grail of email by letting data drive the action, which in turn drives more behavior. Think right place, right time and right content.
- Cool eye candy and new shiny features to ogle.
To that end, if there are pros to AMP For Email, you also have to have cons. If we peel back the onion a bit, those neat things come with certain sacrifices.
- AMP For Email requires a third, separate MIME-type: text-x-amphtml which will require organizations to become even more efficient when producing email. This causes issues like:
- ESP support. At present, 4 ESPs support AMP For Email
- Last minute edits. How will brands react to making last minute changes to another MIME-TYPE to ensure error-free deployments?
- The skepticism around Google’s ulterior motives of gaining greater control of data and tracking, i.e., they will own and profit more from your inbox experience.
- Brands need to ask for permission to send dynamic emails using AMP and ensure that they follow the guidelines that were set.
- Adoption across platforms, both on the ESP and ISP, seems to be somewhat limited at the time of this writing.
- The notion of dynamic and engaging emails offering long-term return has yet to be proven, and brands will need to have a solid testing plan to weigh the resource allocation vs. the lift.
The cons of AMP for Email can be huge for organizations struggling with efficiency, along with trying to maintain or sustain the need to “always be more relevant.” Organizations will need to jump through several different hoops, both technically and operationally, in order to execute a test to gauge optimization. Then, once the internal “lift drunkenness” wears off, organizations must test for long term viability before absorbing it into a newly created process which could lead to increased timelines within the program itself. In order for AMP For Email to be given a fair test, companies will need to have flexible templates, expert coders and a solid QA process to support it going forward.
The Modern Email Marketer
AMP For Email is amazing to experience and you can just imagine how it can add a certain awe and wonder to an email program. However, the modern day email marketer has 153+ other things to consider when looking to make a program better. Let’s face it, in general, email marketing resources tend to be the smallest share of the marketing department, and they are often understaffed, overworked and in some cases, have the least leverage and influence on how to do their job properly. Unfortunately this, in part, is due to a perception amongst overzealous and highly opinionated seasoned marketing folks who think they know email and believe that it’s easy to do.
AMP for Email is not a game changer—yet. Does it stand a chance? Perhaps. But it has to wait in a long line, and a little patience and tolerance will be needed from both sides of the inbox to achieve mass adoption and continued lift for most organizations.
If you are interested in exploring AMP For Email but need help with Operational Efficiencies, Flexible Templates and/or QA For Email then Contact Trendline today.