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Inspired by a recent case study from Penguin which showed the value of truly personalised, one-to-one email communications, we decided to have a look at what makes this industry so successful in terms of email marketing performance. The recently published 2015 Email Industry Census – Key Sector Report gave some insight into that, highlighting Publishing as the star sector in five areas: ROI, ESP Functionality, Time Management: Tactical, Email Practices, and Mobile.

Great results and they’re getting better 

The 2015 report shows Publishing knocking Retail off the top spot for return on investment; 80% of marketers from this industry regard it as excellent or good. They’ve also seen a rise in email performance of 7%, bringing it up to 47%. This could be related to the fact that they are the star sector for leveraging email practices too; Publishers are the most consistent in their use of email of any of the sectors, topping the charts in six categories (and tied top in the seventh).

They also scored high in the use of advanced segmentation, lifecycle programs and lead nurturing.

A focus on content and mobile

When looking at the divide between strategy/planning, optimization and reporting, Publishing marketers seem to have the most balanced approach.


Strategy, optimisation, reporting

However, when analysing the time they spend on design, content, data and transmission, the balance shifts towards the first two. This could be because publishers are essentially content producers so they need to dedicate time more time to it than other industries. Their use of automation also correlates with relatively little time being spent on transmission.


design, content, data, transmission


With every year since 2013 being declared the year of mobile, optimizing consumers’ experience across devices has only increased in importance. Publishing marketers haven’t just adapted to this behavior, they are the star sector in this category with 31% having a ‘quite or very advanced strategy’. This is a serious opportunity for those who want to increase their engagement with an increasingly mobile B2C subscriber base. Publishing and Media brands have made a huge improvement over last year, jumping from 18% to 31% and taking the top slot from last year’s winner – Technology and Telecoms. 

How do you replicate and exceed these results?

Go back to your own results and benchmark against the industry. If you’d like to make email marketing work harder for you, listen to our Email Marketing for Publishing and Media Marketers’ webinar. In this 40-minute session, we specifically addressed the needs of your industry, covering tips, tricks and strategies supported by plenty of examples.