Despite the hype that surrounds social marketing, email remains the most successful free way to bring in new customers.
Customer acquisition by email has increased four-fold in the last four years, and last quarter accounted 6.84 percent of new customers, according to an analysis conducted by Custora, a digital marketing firm for retailers. Facebook and Twitter both drew in less than one percent of new customers in the same period.
Other than paid cost-per-click advertising, only organic search results reeled in more new customers.
Customers acquired by email were also likely to spend more than those acquired through social networks, the analysis found. They spent 12 percent more than average.
New customers whose first conversion occurred through Facebook demonstrated average spending, while those brought in through Twitter spent 23 percent less than average.
The study attributed Twitter users’ anemic spending to the number of discounts they see in promoted tweets.
The study focused on transactions in the quarter that just closed, analyzing the behaviors of 72 million customers from 86 U.S. retailers.