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Three 2011 developments that changed your inbox forever

Nobody ever said that email marketing was an easy game. Keeping up with new trends in this very dynamic field can be tough and 2011 certainly delivered its own share of challenges that might re-define the act of emailing, even for the everyday sender.

 1. The rise of the Priority Inbox For the well-wired, inboxes are slammed with dozens or sometimes hundreds of messages a day making it time-consuming to figure out what needs to be read and replied.

 This year, webmail clients Gmail and Hotmail added a Priority Inbox. This feature automatically identifies important emails and separates them from everything else to help users focus on the content that matters to them the most. You can also mark certain senders as priority by teaching Google to interpret your mail properly by clicking the “mark as important” or “mark as not important” buttons.

  2. HTML5 video Christmas came early as HTML5 video rendering made its way to email, with Hotmail being the first major webmail provider to allow video displays in emails as a part of its 2011 beta client.

 Before Hotmail’s support for HTML5 video, we could only deliver HTML5 videos in email to iOS devices and some other less prominent email clients, which made for an unimpressive email video penetration rate.

 The HTML5 breakthrough has been big news. Incorporating video into emails — a simple enough concept — wasn’t even possible two years ago.

 

3. The (slow) descent of Spam If you want any chance of delivering a worthwhile return on investment, you need to take a solid shot at your end-reader; and nothing shrouds the road to success quite as much having your mailer marked as spam.

 Let’s face it: spam doesn’t just appear out of nowhere. Bad email begins with bad senders, and so 2011 saw the emergence of a new major piece of anti-spam legislation; the Canadian Anti-Spam Law (CASL) - which has yet to come into effect, but is the most restrictive anti-spam law in the world.

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