Ad Blockers Are Scary. Email Marketing Is The Antidote.

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself… and a 600 billion dollar hardware firm, should one arise.”
– Rumoured first draft of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s
1933 inaugural address

As the largest hardware firm in the world, Apple has the ability to shake up markets. They’ve done it again with the iOS9 release and this time their new ad-blocking feature on Safari is spreading fear throughout the advertising industry. The new operating system will enable users to download Safari browser extensions that block many of the website ads consumers usually see when surfing the web. For publishers, that means Halloween has come early this year. And, given the market penetration of Apple devices and the fact that mobile viewing is beginning to eclipse desktop viewing, their silent screams are perhaps justified.

But fear not, Dear Marketer, there are other ways to get precious screen time on consumers’ smart phones, or to reach users on their desktop for that matter. To cut through the noise, consider adding email to your marketing mix.

Email marketing is well established as one of the most engaging forms of advertising. Users make the conscious decision to open and read every single email, so a message has a much higher chance of influencing the recipient. A recent survey from The Relevancy Group found that 91% of marketing executives hold email as the most effective channel for driving revenue.

Email marketing has recently been making a resurgence as marketers find that social media channels, like Twitter, are now too cluttered with competing messages to be reliable. No consumer would tolerate hundreds of daily promotions in their email inbox and yet many follow 500+ accounts on Twitter, most of which send out multiple tweets per day. Add to this the fact that Canada’s strict anti-spam legislation is requiring consumers to opt-in to receive emails, and what’s emerging is a channel that’s capturing an incredible amount of attention.

The ultimate prize for marketers is to have their own opt-in email audience that they can segment and savour, like Halloween candy, for months to come. However, what if you are just getting started with retargeting and you don’t have that audience yet? There are tried and true means of gathering email addresses, like running contests and exchanging whitepapers for contact details. But we at the House also strongly recommend the tactic of paying to advertise directly to the established email audiences of compatible media suppliers.

Many publishers and radio stations have invested significantly in creating a fan base that want to hear about new products and promotions from trusted partners. The publishers won’t sell you actual emails, and for good reason – you need to build up trust with the audience members in order to get them to subscribe to your list. But, if you want to reach 30-something females who are into beauty and travel, consider paying to promote in Vitamin Daily’s weekday eblast, or if you’re looking for older males who drink beer in Vancouver, you might want to drop in on 99.3 The Fox’s virtual VIP club. Leveraging these trusted relationships means that your message will be seen as one of relevance, rather than intrusion.

Here are the key things to think about in purchasing an email campaign:

  1. Demographics – How well does the publisher’s audience match yours and what sort of message will resonate with that group? Also, don’t go cheap on the creative. You’re paying more to reach an engaged audience, so make sure you give them a great first impression!
  2. Location – Ask the publisher for statistics on where their audience lives and make sure it’s a fit. It’s tempting to assume that a radio station’s fan base is evenly distributed over the area where they broadcast, but that may not be the case.
  3. Price – How does the publisher charge – on emails sent or opened? Ask how many views they get and compare the price per view to other publishers.
  4. ROI – what kind of reporting does the publisher offer and does their audience take the kind of action you’re looking for (e.g. click-throughs, social shares, etc.)?

If you’re not sure where to start, then the best place is probably the Discover Media House platform. We can quickly ascertain your marketing needs and match them with the right email audience supplier. Contact us at

Oh, and if you’re still keen to reach iPhone users with display ads, we have a trick – or treat, rather – in store. We can help you purchase ads in iPhone apps, like the Facebook app, that will not be caught by Apple’s ad blocker. Ask us about this tactic and others, and we’ll get some highly optimized campaigns running in no time.

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