Marketing has always been a complicated, but necessary task for businesses. Advertising campaigns were once limited to the realms of print, radio, and television – but even then marketers had to strike a delicate balance of promoting their brand in a way that was not viewed by customers as overly pushy. Things have only gotten more complex with the introduction of modern technology such as the World Wide Web, social media platforms, and the relatively new yet already pervasive phenomenon of the smart phone. Marketers now have many different advertising methods from which to choose.There has been considerable debate in the marketing world over the value of email marketing versus the more traditional direct mail marketing. Those in favor of direct mail often claim that emails are likely to be disregarded by customers, however taking a look at the evidence surrounding email marketing campaigns reveals that it is not only a highly effective marketing method, it is also cost-efficient.Rapid Growth in Companies Using Email MarketingSome people say that email marketing is already outdated – an old model in its death throes. However, there is research showing how the number of companies that embrace email marketing as part of their overall advertising strategy has increased in recent years and clearly refutes such claims. Email marketing is close to an $11 billion dollar industry and in the past five years, it has enjoyed a nearly 20 percent rate of growth.Email advertising continues to gain prominence, particularly in small businesses. Research conducted by Hurwitz & Associates revealed that 46% of small businesses utilized email marketing and 36% had plans to begin using it in 12 months following the survey. Furthermore, email marketing on average accounts for around 15-22% of the advertising budget for those businesses that utilize it. It is popular among small businesses because it is a simple, straightforward advertising method that achieves positive results. According to the report:”As companies grow, they are more likely to adopt email marketing. Companies with 2-4 and 5-10 employees are the most likely to have plans to deploy email campaigns in the next 12 months. Having outgrown the sole-proprietor stage, these companies are looking to increase sales and revenues to support existing headcount and expand business.” – Hurwitz & AssociatesOverall Cost and Revenue Benefits of Email MarketingEmail marketing is one of the best methods for saving money on advertising costs, especially for those who have a solid customer base online. When taking into account all of the direct and indirect costs of email versus traditional mail campaigns, it is obvious that the former is far more cost efficient than the latter. In fact, direct mail can cost a jaw dropping 50-100 times more than email.A study performed by the Harvard Business reviewed and compared cost and revenue results from email and direct mail campaigns highlighting just how much more cost-effective email campaigns can be. The email campaigns in the study performed up to 95 times higher in terms of Return On Investment (ROI) than direct mail. Studies like this underline the fact that email marketing has significant financial advantages over direct mail marketing.For one thing, promotional emails do not require a small fortune spent on the design process. The photos, digital graphics, and text for an email can all be found or produced online. When it comes to direct mail marketing however, you have to consider the entire creative development process, from the cost of printing your materials to necessary postage.How to get startedIf you want to get started marketing your product or service via email and do not have an affiliate network or online marketing agency you are working with, consider talking to several to chose one to be your online marketing partner. For someone starting out online for the first time, online marketing carries many unique challenges that an advertising agency who specializes in affiliate marketing can help you with. You want to work with one who does affiliate marketing as using affiliate marketing to create cost per sale (CPS), cost per lead (CPL) or cost per action (CPA) email marketing campaigns will be the most effective way to maximize your online advertising dollar. Madrivo Media is one company that specializes in helping clients with their online advertising campaigns.