— June 7, 2019
What comes to your mind when you read “blockchain”?
Bitcoin? Cryptocurrency? Hearing these terms a lot lately?
Well, we are in the digital age, and innovative technologies are disrupting all walks of life. Blockchain is one such technology that is going to be inevitable in the near future. So, what is all the hype about and what are its applications in email marketing? Read on to find out.
Firstly, what exactly is Blockchain?
Earlier, all the data got stored in a centralized server on the internet. Blockchain is a new age technology that uses a distributed ledger (registry or database) to store data and transactions. In simple terms, it is a chain of data that is managed by a cluster of computers. Also called the new internet, data in the blockchain is secured using cryptographic principles, and stored in a decentralized manner. This means the data stored here cannot be tampered, and there is no central database for the hackers to target. The transactions done through this system are fast, reliable, and highly secure.
The blockchain technology runs on the following key principles:
- It uses a transparent distributed ledger, which allows the users to access all the information (including the past transaction history) they need to complete the transaction.
- Direct peer-to-peer transactions are possible, which eliminates the need for central storages or intermediaries.
- Users are given a blockchain address for verifying transactions, which can either be shared with others or kept anonymous.
- Because the entire system is online, the processes can be automated using algorithms.
- Each and every transaction gets linked to the previous one, and gets stored in the decentralized ledger permanently.
Used predominantly in the FinTech sector since its advent, this technology also has its applications on sectors such as healthcare, property and trading, crowdfunding, supply chain, and many more.
So, how will it impact emails?
If you think emails are too old to adopt the latest technologies, think again! Email indeed has been reigning for a long time. But over the years, it has adapted to all the changes that came its way, and it will continue to do so.
In the past several decades, emails have evolved from simple HTML-based coded templates to emails that provide high value through hyper-personalization and automation. The growing demands and awareness of modern customers have led to the implementation of data security laws such as the GDPR. Customers want their emails to be end-to-end encrypted, and their personal data and information to be secured. Thus, secure email marketing with end-to-end encrypted emails is something we will start seeing more.
Blockchain-based coded emails are the future!
An email sent and backed up by blockchain is stored in the database permanently and cannot be changed or edited by an outer source. This gives email marketers the thrill of sending perfectly crafted emails to their customers. Blockchain technology ensures that all the user data is entered correctly and there is no scope for the user information getting tampered.
Hence, blockchain technology will give a new perspective to emails. Here are some of the most prevalent benefits of blockchain in email marketing that can be predicted.
Protects and stores sensitive user data
Customers are not ready to sacrifice their privacy and digital security these days, which makes them think twice before subscribing to a company’s email newsletter. With the implementation of GDPR, companies are forced to limit the data collection and respect the user’s privacy concerns. On the other hand, marketers also need to know and understand their users’ preferences and choices better, to send them relevant and well-crafted content.
The ultra-secure network of blockchain has a way out for this. The data transmitted is not stored on third-party servers, but instead remains with the actual owners of the data. This means whenever the users want to opt-out of the email list, they can take their data away, and their relationship with the sender will be terminated. Also, the information transmitted is inherently encrypted, making it much more secure than the standard username and password system.
Emails are often tagged as spam or untrustworthy, due to fake email senders and ids. According to Statista, spam messages accounted to 57% of email traffic at the end of 2018. These spammers can be eradicated using spam traps in the blockchain. Whenever a spammer attempts to email without the users’ consent, they would be charged a fee. The emails that the receivers did not opt for, can be detected by the spam traps and blocked automatically. Such fraud verification process will verify the origin of the email every time it is sent, and destroy mass phishing scams. This will reduce spams to a great extent.
Saves users from email fraud
Financial institutions, loan firms, insurance companies and FinTech players, have to deal with a lot of sensitive user data. Users do not trust sharing their sensitive information with such firms, as these sectors are the ones that send most fraudulent emails. Data security is of utmost importance in these firms, as they carry out money and sensitive data transactions. Blockchain technology compares the email with the user preferences and sensitive information stored in the ledger, identifies email fraud, and blocks them.
Enables automated and targeted campaigns
Blockchain will provide greater transparency about user data to brands and email marketers. All the relevant data stored about the users in the ledger will help the marketers to make sound decisions and run suitable campaigns. Email marketers will have precise, up-to-date information about the users’ behavior, likes, interests, and buying journey stage. Combining Blockchain with Artificial Intelligence, marketers will be able to create better targeted, personalized, and automated messages and add more value to their campaigns.
An email sent via blockchain is saved in the ledger and cannot be further edited or changed. This means the user data that gets fetched from the blockchain system will be used as it is in the encrypted emails, making them error-proof. This will save the marketers and email testers a lot of time in verifying the email details manually. They will now have more time to focus on other things such as creating better email designs, writing compelling email copy, and designing personalized and targeted campaigns.
Whether the email marketing world is ready to fully embrace blockchain in email marketing is yet not clear. But it is evident that this technology will certainly solve some serious issues that email marketers and users are currently facing.