There is no exact rocket science in email marketing, but there are certain ways to optimize content of email and delivery details in order to maximize the achievements of an email campaign. Marketers have long known that “subject lines” can have a major impact on both open rate and click through rate, but recent analysis from Adestra dug deeper into the issue of subject lines to show how their particular word count and message positioning can significantly impact an email’s performance. MediaPost.com outlined the key results from this analysis to help digital promoters choose their words smartly.
“Character length is the key to success”, that is the result of the analysis. The top-performing subject lines were either less than 30 characters or more than 90 characters, with any amount in the middle producing inadequate outcomes. The highest response rate came from the subject lines with more than 90 characters because these indicated the most advantages, yet lines with less than 30 characters worked well in both transactional and direct-response emails.
Word count is usually symbolic of character count in subject lines, but the analysis revealed some interesting differences that could impact email performance. It revealed that word count results basically mirrored the character count results with regards to both the smallest and lengthiest working best, but the shortest subject lines, with less than 14 words, actually generated much higher engagement levels than the lengthiest lines. The only exception was for B2B emails since their industry-centric vocabulary usually consists of more terms, which meant that more word count matters in B2B email.
The placement of the subject line of message also made a distinctness in email performance. Subject lines containing news-focused terms conducted moderately well, especially the terms “breaking” and “alert.” Discount terms like “save,” “half price” and “free” served below regular, yet the use of the term “sale” had above-average opens and clickthroughs. Surprisingly, other frequently used placed terms relevant to benefits, events, and content performed below-average in clicks, opens, and click-to-opens.
The mention of multi-channel terms like Pinterest, Facebook, and app also provided mixed outcomes. Remarkably, terms relevant to social networking provided generally inadequate response rate. This could be linked to their popular email usage or because social media sites are not as essential to B2B professionals as is commonly thought.
On a bright note, customized subject lines elicited immediate engagement. Unfortunately, this interest often reduced once the email was opened because the content was not properly customized. Clearly, it is vital to maintain that customized tone throughout the email content within to keep people reading and get them replying.
The main downside from the research is that subject lines are extremely essential in email marketing and a few short terms can make a world of difference. To achieve success in email strategy the subject lines should be tested and crafted repeatedly and carefully.