This is a trickier question than it seems to be. Print campaigns and email blasts both have their benefits and drawbacks. It may be safe to say that in order for companies to truly be effective in their marketing endeavors, both campaigns should be used. That being said, email blasts are not completely dead as an effective marketing tool.
There are a number of reasons why email blasts continue to be part of the business arsenal. If a company sends out a traditional print mail campaign, that company cannot track whether or not the intended recipients trashed the mailer, read it then trashed it, read it and kept it, etc. That is the beauty of email campaigns – you can do what you can’t do with print. Of course, it is important to mention that print campaigns do have a higher conversion rate than email campaigns. But that depends on the design of the printed materials, the quality, and who you’re sending it to.
With email blasts, assuming a company is using an established email marketing system, there are a number of advantages. For one, most of these organizations provide email reports that allow companies to know if their email was opened, when they opened it, how many times it was viewed, if it was forwarded, which links they clicked on, and a number of other useful pieces of information. In turn, this information can be used to then target future email campaigns to certain individuals to ensure that they both open the email and actually read it.
One of the most obvious reasons email blasts still exist is their cost effectiveness. It is much more affordable to have a company create and design an email blast and send it out than it is to design print materials.