New Research Suggests Ways to Create Engaging Email Subject LInes

Peter Roesler, President - Web Marketing Pros

By Peter Roesler

President, Web Marketing Pros

email-marketing-conceptThere has been a lot of data and articles that point to the fact the email marketing can be effective with online consumers, even as new marketing technology becomes available. One of the big challenges to creating an engaging email marketing campaign is the fact that marketers only have the short space of a subject line to grab the reader’s attention and to get them to open the email. New research suggests that when it comes to describing deals in subject lines, less is more.

The research comes from Yes Lifecycle Marketing, whose data which showed that emails which included the word ‘deals’ but which didn’t offer specifics as to the deal (e.g. terms of the deal or discount amounts) out-performed those which offered specific deal details.

It may be counter-intuitive, but the data is pretty convincing. Of the emails they analyzed for the report, the open rates for campaigns that had no offer in the subject line performed 28 percent higher than those that included offers. Similarly, the data analysis showed that both click rates (67 percent) and CTO rates (34 percent higher) outperformed campaigns with offer-specific details.

Most consumers are deal focused, another fact that has been born out through multiple lines of research, so why would emails with less deal information perform better than emails with grand offers on display. The researchers at LifeCycle Marketing believe the results are a sign of advertising fatigue on the part of consumers.

“With so many offers flooding consumers’ inboxes, it can be challenging for brands to make their promotions stand out,” said Michael Fisher, president of Yes Lifecycle Marketing, according to media reports. “Many marketers feel like they need to advertise generous offers to be competitive. However, the lack of engagement shows that consumers are often not tempted by extravagant incentives. Instead, to make emails relevant, marketers could emphasize loyalty and rely on lifecycle messages to keep things fresh and make offers feel more unique.”

Besides the revelation that less is more when it comes to marketing email subject lines, the report also had some data to help specific kinds of email marketers. For example, the researchers looked at loyalty program emails specifically for one analysis.

Loyalty based subject lines showed 20 percent higher click rates than deal emails. Also, loyalty based subject lines showed 12 percent higher CTO rates than deal emails. Clearly, getting people to sign up for a loyalty program is a good way increase the effectiveness of emails sent to them.

Another important aspect the research examined is how conversion rates affected by subject lines and loyalty.  Conversion rates for deal/incentive subject lines were 1.5 percent, which is pretty good baseline. However, the conversion rates for loyalty based campaigns were 7.2 percent, again showing that loyalty programs make email marketing more effective since people are looking forward to these messages.

As business owners and marketers plan for upcoming spring, Easter, and graduation campaigns, these facts about email marketing can help them increase sales from discount-seeking shoppers.

For more information about email marketing, read this article with more email subject line tips.

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