Email marketing campaigns can help businesses appeal to prospects while spending less money.

In an increasingly social search landscape, small business marketers suggest there is still significant value in email marketing. According to a report from Pitney Bowes, relayed by InternetRetailer.com, 68 percent of small businesses literally deliver marketing messages to consumers direct to their inboxes.

By the survey's measure, email is the most popular marketing channel among SMBs. This shouldn't come as a surprise to many marketers; ContentLEAD has reported that email outreach offers access to a broad audience. An ExactTarget survey shows that 93 percent of online consumers are brand subscribers.

The Pitney Bowes study reveals that marketers believe email marketing works best as part of an integrated online marketing approach. Fifty-eight percent of SMB marketers say they market across multiple channels.

“Companies are discovering that a combination of marketing channels is most effective in reaching prospects and customers,” InternetRetailer.com quotes Debra Thompson-Van, Pitney Bowes' vice president of marketing, as saying.

Nonetheless, 51 percent of respondents will not invest more heavily in multichannel marketing efforts this year due to lack of time and resources. With this in mind, brands might consider outsourcing their integrated marketing efforts in order to gain a competitive edge.