E-mail is the top target for marketers’ investments in 2016, according to a survey by marketing solution providers StrongView and Selligent. The “Selligent & StrongView 2016 Marketing Tends Survey” poll of 295 marketers found that email is their leading choice (60 percent) for increased investment among digital channels, beating social media and display, which took the second and third spots. More than half (56 percent) of respondents plan to increase marketing budgets in 2016, about the same as last year.

For many respondents, connecting with consumers more effectively was the primary consideration behind their investment goals. The survey found that “Increasing subscriber engagement” was the most commonly cited marketing initiative for 2016 at 34 percent, more than twice the amount of the second-place initiative, “improving segmentation and targeting.” Consistent with challenges the new year will bring, “leveraging customer data from multiple channels and data sources” was the most-cited response.

More effort will also go toward the integration of email and social media in 2016. The survey found that 45 percent of marketers listed “social media channel growth” as their top email marketing initiative for investment in 2016 compared with only 34 percent in 2015, edging out more traditional promotional programs and triggered email programs.

“Email marketing is an established and profitable channel that will be seeing increased investment in 2016 as marketers continue to rely on it as a vital part of their omnichannel strategies,” says Andre Lejeune, CEO of Selligent. “It’s encouraging to see marketers break down siloes to use channels like email, social media, and web together to create a better and more unified experience for consumers.”

Click here for more of the survey’s findings.