Email vs Social Media Shootout: Which one is more effective in 2022


Email and Social Media are two different ways to engage with your audiences. You need both as part of your marketing strategy.

To be honest, comparing these is a bit like comparing oranges with apples.

Nonetheless, it’s interesting to understand the differences from a resource allocation point of view. 

When push comes to shove, where should you concentrate more? 

Where would you put your money? Email, or Social Media? What would be more important?

This post answers the questions on this.

  1. Social Media Organic Reach has fallen
  2. Email Marketing shows better promise
  3. How do you build a list for Email Marketing
  4. 8 Remarkable Benefits of List Building
  5. List building vs Social Media: Let data tell you what is more important?

Social Media Organic Reach has fallen

In comparison to social networking sites, email is a more effective sales and communication channel.

However active you are in managing your Facebook page or Twitter account, the potential return is significantly lower than that of using opt-in email lists.  That’s proven.

Social media channels are excellent for reaching a large number of people provided you engage folks through content, growth hacks and ads. When all three activities flow together, you will see better success, not just with one or you of these.

Organic reach on Facebook has fallen substantially since 2013. It now hovers between 2-10% of your fan count. 

The larger percentage is applied for lower fan numbers. As your fan base increases, the percentage will start falling.

If you don’t invest money behind the posts, your engagement will drop.

Email Marketing shows better promise

The next step would be to add the people you meet to your email list as a result of your efforts.

The use of email is the first step in the process of developing a customer relationship database. 

It will assist you in nurturing leads, closing the sale, and generating repeat business.

  1. Email is at least four times more effective than Facebook in terms of reaching your target audience.
  2. Email opens with a 20 percent open rate
  3. On Facebook, if you have 20,000 fans and 5% of them are talking about your brand, there are just 1,000 people talking.
  4. If 5,000 emails are sent and 1,000 emails were opened, with 300 to 400 clicks to your website.

There are a variety of strategies you can use to increase your open rates beyond that.

How do you build a list

One of the best ways to build your list is to redefine the purpose of your website. 

For a long time on the web, and even today, the notion of a website was to inform and get customers to choose your brand when they are convinced. 

Today, that notion has turned on its head. 

The website now is the start of a structured dialogue with potential customers. 

However, you can start a dialogue only when you have the email address of the prospect. 

This makes capture of email addresses the key to success on a website.

Capture allows you to build a subscriber database of prospects who are happy to receive your communications. 

You can then use this list for conversations or dialogues with your customers. 

This builds trust and authority with prospects and you will then be able to nudge them towards the sale.

“59 percent of buyers think marketing communications influence their purchasing decisions.” -HubSpot

8 Remarkable Benefits of List Building

Building an email list is an absolute must for any marketing strategist. 

Studies report a return on investment (ROI) of 4200 percent for marketing products and services through email list marketing. 

59% of businesses consider email to be a valuable tool for connecting with their audience

There are numerous advantages to building lists. 

  1. You build a list of people who voluntarily sign up, or give you permission to receive your newsletters or any other communications that you wish to send them in the near future. 
  2. In the bargain, you cultivate a captive and dedicated base of prospects and customers to pass value and build your brand 
  3. You spend less than what you would in social media for list building. It’s also easier to understand than social media. 
  4. As email is more personal, customers are more likely to invest in your growth and progress when they receive an email rather than a generic post on social media. 
  5. Emails confer credibility and authority for your brand 
  6. Since email lists are your ‘owned media’, your brand’s message is fully within your control
  7. You can reach more folks with owned media than with paid media, over time, and at a much lower cost.
  8. What’s even better, your email lists are unaffected by Google penalties. Or modifications in social platform algorithms that restrict the reach of organic content in favor of paid content.

List building vs Social Media: Data tells you what is more important? 

According to a study by Optin Monster in 2019, Email Marketing trumped Social Media in the total number of users, conversion rates, click through rates and ROI.

The numbers have grown in 2022.

The stats on List Building are very revealing.

According to a Hubspot Report for 2022

    1. There are 4 billion email users who check their inbox every day.
    2. Since the pandemic outbreak, more than 40% of marketers have seen their email budgets reduced.
    3. Email marketing is used by 64 percent of small businesses to reach their customers.
    4. On average, one out of every five email campaigns is not optimised for mobile devices.
    5. Marketers who use segmented campaigns see an increase in revenue of as much as 760 percent.
    6. 35 percent of marketers send 3-5 emails to their customers per week, according to a survey.
    7. The number of people who open emails has increased by 78 percent in the last year, according to marketers.
  • Four out of five marketers state that they would prefer to give up social media over email marketing.
  1. Approximately 20% of retailers, e-commerce sites, and consumer goods and services companies are personalising their emails based on factors such as gender, race, ethnicity, and age.
  2. Email is the most personal channel for communicating with brands, according to 74 percent of Baby Boomers.

What’s the ROI for Email

In an article on HelpScout, there is further evidence of research on Social Media vs Search vs Email.


  1. Email: For every $1 spent, you will receive $40.
  2. Keyword advertising generates $17 for every $1 spent.
  3. For every dollar spent on banner advertisements, you will receive $2.

Aside from that, email has significantly higher conversion rates per session than both search and social combined:


  1. 4.16 percent of people use email
  2. 2.64 percent of the population searches on Googles and other engines
  3. 0.48 percent of the population is social.

It’s easy to see how an engaging newsletter can benefit both parties. 

Customers and prospects who are interested in your industry will receive valuable content, and you will be able to maximise one of the most powerful personal marketing channels available on the cluttered mess that is the internet in exchange for your efforts.

Perhaps most importantly, you won’t have to contend with the plethora of distractions that can be found on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. 

To conclude

Social media is an excellent tool for increasing traffic to your site. 

You can accomplish this organically by ensuring that your content goes viral, or you can pay for social media advertisements.

User-generated content (UGC), in the form of comments, likes, and shares, is also extremely popular on social media and can be a powerful driver of traffic and leads.

Email marketing is a fantastic tool for generating leads, driving sales, and increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Put another way, you can and should use social media to drive traffic to your website, where you can then leverage the power of tools to convert those visitors into subscribers. 

Then, using an email marketing service, you can build relationships with your subscribers and maximise your return on investment.

Do you want to share your thoughts on email marketing vs. social media marketing? 

Please share them with us in the comments section.

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