Has the line between acquisition and retention e-mail marketing disappeared? A continued increase in spam, wide use of rented e-mail lists, and an epidemic of companies over-mailing consumers have changed e-mail reader behavior to a point where recipients may not notice the difference between an acquisition and a retention e-mail.

E-mail marketing has evolved. It can no longer be broken out by siloed tactics for rented and in-house lists. Retention-based mailers can no longer ignore the e-mail media buys taking place within their organizations. The offers these buys include, the branding they portray, and the type of response they illicit are key. A comprehensive strategy for speaking to the customer using e-mail must be designed.

There are five critical facts that led to my decision.

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