Email continues to be a popular way for brands to communicate with their customers. And with no signs of slowing down, brands are continually looking for ways to create a more secure and immersive email experience with consumers. A recent study conducted by Red Sift and Entrust may have uncovered the holy grail for elevating an organization’s email strategy. It revealed that showing a logo positively affects consumer interaction with emails, open rates, buying behavior, and brand recall, and boosts confidence.

The study, Consumer Interaction with Visual Brands in Email, focused on how consumers interacted with email when shown some messages that displayed a logo consistent with the Brand Indicators for Message Identification (BIMI) standards for displaying validated trademarked logos and others without it.

The survey found that among consumers, the inclusion of a logo using BIMI standards:

  • Increased open rates by 21%, irrespective of brand strength or market share. Recipients were more responsive to messages that displayed a logo alongside emails.
  • Increased average purchase likelihood by 34%. Prospects were more likely to purchase when brand logos were displayed in the inbox.
  • Increased brand recall by 18%, after a 5-second exposure. And the stronger the brand, the higher the recall increase.

The BIMI standard brings DMARC anti-spoofing technology together with a Verified Mark Certificate (VMC), which is issued by a certification authority, to validate the registered logo and verify the organization behind it. It was developed by Entrust in collaboration with the AuthIndicators Working Group. This marks a distinct moment for technology where the objectives of the InfoSec team harmonize with the marketing team to bring best practices to email marketing.

Google, a proponent of secure-by-default experiences, is the largest provider of business-to-consumer email and was the first mailbox provider to announce their general support for the current BIMI standard.

VMCs make use of the mailbox provider’s highly visible avatar slot that appears next to email messages – this effort requires the use of a high assurance VMC along with an SVG file of the brand’s registered logo, and DMARC technology. Once a VMC is set up and properly configured, an organization’s registered trademarked logo is automatically displayed.

vmc phone image

DMARC is an email authentication protocol that protects against exact domain impersonation. When properly configured, DMARC ensures emails sent using your domain are legitimate. This prevents hackers from impersonating your brand and damaging your reputation. Correct DMARC configuration can also improve deliverability, as receiving senders can see that your emails have come from a reputable source, thereby reducing the chance of being caught in a spam filter.

While the holy grail of email communications may not possess miraculous powers as the motif itself, even at such an early stage, the data reveals that BIMI is showing promising results. This could have significant market value for brands communicating with customers by email while simultaneously elevating an organization’s overall email strategy.

Download the report here.