Youth Expect to Use Email More in the Future

November 13, 2017

This article is included in these additional categories:

Customer Engagement | Customer-Centric | Demographics & Audiences | Digital | Email | Teens & Younger | Youth & Gen X

Email is a core form of communication among America’s youth, who generally expect to use email more in the future than they are now, per survey results [download page] from SendGrid and Egg Strategy. In fact, almost half (48%) of Gen Z respondents (ages 13-21) believe their email usage will increase in the coming years. That makes members of Gen Z more apt to see an increase in email usage in their future than both Millennials and Gen Xers.

Half of Gen Z respondents and a slight majority (52%) of Millennials (22-34) report that their email use has already increased over the past few years. Gen Xers (35%) are less likely to claim an increase in their use of email, but equally unlikely to report a decrease (just 21%).

Younger respondents’ greater inclination to use email more may be linked to their entry into the workforce. Among respondents whose email use has increased, by far the main reason given is due to their work. Additionally, Gen Z respondents are much more likely than their older counterparts to envision an increase in their use of professional emails over both the short- (1 year) and medium-term (5 years). That’s presumably due to their being less likely to be engaged with professional emails now.

Separate research indicates that most members of Gen Z (ages 13-21) will have already started using email by the time they hit their teenage years. In fact, 44% of Millennials said they started using email between the ages of 10 and 15, per YouGov’s study. The SendGrid research – which was limited to digital communication users – did reveal that 85% of Gen Z respondents are using email on at least a monthly basis.

Email’s Important for B2C Interactions

In terms of the types of email interactions that respondents engage with, the SendGrid study reveals that members of Gen Z are as likely to receive emails from companies (68%) as they are to send and receive personal emails (68%). Interestingly, these youngest respondents appear to place more value on B2C emails than do older generations.

That finding is supported by several other studies. For example, research from Adobe indicates that Millennials are more welcoming of daily emails from brands than are older generations. A study from Fluent also finds that Millennials (18-34) are 63% more likely than their older counterparts to say that promotional emails impact their purchase decisions most or all of the time.

Email continues to be the preferred method of receiving interactions from companies, by 74% of respondents overall. When consumers are the ones to initiate the interaction, social media (following or “liking” a company) is the preferred method (39%), but signing up for a newsletter (32%) and emailing a company (32%) are the next-most common forms. In fact, Gen Z respondents are as likely to sign up for a company’s newsletter as they are to download a company’s app.

So don’t proclaim the death of email yet, or at all…

About the Data: The results are based on a survey of 1,200 US digital communication users ages 13-50. Digital communications refers to tools such as email, text message, video chat, business communication apps, and social media.

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