The history of email as a medium of communication extends far back to over 50 years, according to Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia. But email as we know it today was invented by Ray Tomlinson who passed on recently. Radicati Group’s Global Email Statistics Report (2015 – 2019) reveals there are over 2.6 billion active users, including business and consumer users and about 4.6 billion accounts in operation today. They also predicted that by 2019 email account will rise to 5.9 billion.
When email emerged as a communication tool, it brought speed and convenience to PR work. It is the primary way PR professionals communicate with clients, business partners and journalists. It is widely used in internal communication. It serves as an excellent and cost-effective way to distribute content. Muck Rack study revealed 92% of journalists preferred to be pitched by email. They also prefer to have press materials from PR people by email. Email allows you to exchange files and the ease of sending common messages to multiple receivers has made it the darling of PR professionals. Today, it seems the story is changing for the worst. Email seems to be on the precipice to its grave.
The Chat Apps Challenge
Chat apps, SMS and social messaging platforms are giving email a run for the money. Business Insider Research Report reveals a startling statistics that is driving fear down the spines of email users. It indicates their beloved communication tool will be buried soon. It shows that chat apps such as Whatsup, Facebook Messenger and Google Allo are replacing email as the preferred mode of business to consumer interaction. There is also a widespread adoption of chat apps for the following reasons:
- Quick and easy-to-access communication
- It enables business and users to communicate on the go
- It enables uploading and sharing of documents and files without having to leave the app
- It offers superior data security
Waning Email Popularity
Business Insider study reveals that the popularity of email is waning. Take a look at how it has fared in the competition in the last few years:
Will email go the way of the telegram?
Email is proving that it’s a cat with nine lives. If pen and paper have not been totally eliminated by new technologies, we can be assured email will remain our cherished partner for many more years to come. The Business Insider Report says that its position is consolidated for the following reasons:
- It remains a trusted form of communication for consumers both within the workplace and between private consumers.
- It is a favoured communication tool for the older generation.
- Its use is expected to increase because of global adoption of smart phones which now provide users access to their email accounts.
- It is powerful for marketers to reach consumers.
- It is more than just an online mail. It has unlimited capacity and is used as a storage and filing system which chat apps cannot replicate.
More Points of Resilience
The study failed to mention the fact that nearly every web service requires you to sign up with an email address or verify a new account via email. Some socials networks with built-in messaging platforms such Facebook and Linkedin primarily use email to communicate with their users.
Email is a case of the survival of the rooted. It is more rooted in the Internet and in the minds of its users than its challenges. Perhaps it will only die when the internet is no more.