Consumer email services have been around for almost three decades, but to hear email’s most ardent fans talk about it now, it’s an undiscovered country too long neglected by those who could benefit from it the most. In the #deletefacebook era, it’s become a way to fight back against the algorithms that try to dictate what people see. Unlike on Facebook , readers receive everything they signed up to receive, in neat chronological order, alongside missives from friends, family and their various communities.

For marketers great and small, the algorithms that power social media represent the ever-rising cost of doing business on the platforms owned by the duopoly of Google and Facebook. Email allows authors to intimately connect with readers, lets brands address their most loyal customers and budding startups develop armies of influencers.

Readers’ ready access to the “unsubscribe” button is largely a good thing for all involved, since it nudges email content creators to produce authentic, high-quality experiences rather than superficially engaging ones, and to connect in ways that are deeper than what advertising-first mediums like Facebook generally allow.