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We had a hunch that word choice in email subject lines have a strong effect on response rates. So, we tested 287 keywords across a sample of 2.2bn emails to see which work, and which don’t.
Why? Because President Obama has done more for email marketing than any world leader in the history of mankind. How? By focusing on subject line testing, his digital team optimised their donation campaigns to generate hundreds of millions of dollars online.
Despite Obama’s best efforts, most marketers still view email marketing as the Bluth Company’s Banana Stand of Arrested Development fame: a more boring and less sexy marketing channel than pretty much anything else imaginable.
But – and never forget this – there’s always money in the banana stand! There is great power in optimising subject lines.
In case you missed my presentations at MarketingWeekLive last week, you can find out more about our findings after the jump.
What would it take to get you to do what I want? If I looked you in the eye when asking? If it was a Tuesday? If your name sounded like mine?
According to scientists, it’s the last. We feel more warmly towards people or things we associate with ourselves, like if my name was Mary Anne and yours was Marilyn. They’re close enough in sound and visual likeness that I’d be more apt to do you a favor than one for, say, Richard or Jennifer.
These kinds of findings, argued Nancy Harhut at Integrated Marketing Week, have implications for marketers because we’re trying to get people to do things all the time: click on a link, choose our product over another, like our company on Facebook.
Knowing the instinctive, reflexive behaviors that people rely on when making decisions helps our marketing strategies and how we go about designing the prompts or triggers to get others to do what we want.
Harhut identified seven that will help you on your way to world domination.
Here's a quick look at some search terms and paid ads ahead of Father's Day.
Some ads were optimised but dry, others made me laugh unintentionally, and some targeted the longer tail.
Nobody likes reading marketing jargon, yet all corporate websites rely on a certain amount of fluffy language to fill their pages and sell their services.
However two studies from the Nielsen Norman Group indicate that content that’s rich with facts and short on jargon is actually a more effective way of attracting people to your website.
It should be pointed out from the start that these studies tested journalists and people using investor relation (IR) pages on corporate websites, so it’s difficult to draw any direct parallels with consumer copywriting.
But even so, I would suggest that the findings still give a useful indicator of the kind of content that web users are interested in.
All ecommerce sites could benefit from having product recommendations, with research showing that they can potentially increase revenue by up to 300%, improve conversions by 150% and help boost the average order value by 50%.
However, the precise format varies from site to site and should be tested to make sure it’s converting the maximum number of customers.
The copywriting needs to fit with the brand identity and it’s also important to strike an emotive chord and pique the customer’s interest.
This isn’t an easy task considering the fact that you generally only have room for about three or four words, but there is still a great deal you can do with the limited space.
PR and marketing agencies don't have it easy. This crowded B2B market means agencies have to crow loudest, longest and with most meaning.
This is a simple little post marking a few things I've liked looking at on agency websites, and some things I haven't. There's likely a whole host of posts to write on copy alone, web design alone, and content alone, but this is just a snippet to start.
I would be very glad to hear pet hates about agency websites in the comments below (keep it friendly:-).
Everyone celebrates the magic of the internet because it removed the obstacles between any of us and all of us.
For the first time, someone with zero resources could reach an audience of billions and change the world.
But every sliver lining has its cloud and content marketers are experiencing the unintended consequences of a barrier-less world...
Successful email marketing relies on a large customer database, so attracting new signups should be a high priority for most businesses.
Research shows that around half (49%) of consumers are signed up to receive emails from between one and 10 brands, while 8% don’t receive any at all, so one of the main challenges for email marketers is getting into the inbox in the first place.
There are several tactics that brands can use to encourage consumers to signup to email newsletters, including explicitly highlighting the value of the emails through testimonials or a clear statement of subscription benefits, and using a clear signup process.
We’ve previously looked at best practices for improving email deliverability, as well as highlighting seven tips for managing email marketing campaigns.
And here are 10 tips and examples of how to improve your email signups...
Whether you’re creating a blog, developing a content-marketing campaign or writing for social media, hard-hitting content is the key to success.
But how can you achieve it?
Sometimes, the idea of content is better than the execution. The problem isn’t with what you're saying, but the way you’re saying it. Sharpen that up and your content springs to life.
Here are ten tips for freshening up your content to drive interest, engagement and social sharing. Copywriters swear by them, but anyone can use them.
Words are the most important tool marketers and ad men have. To prove it, I’ll show you a picture.
The chart beneath the Bee Gees shows that 60% of people prefer a ‘print experience’ to something ‘whizzy’, on a tablet app.
Obviously, 'print-like' doesn't just mean words, it also refers to typography and, to some extent, pictures. However, in this post I'll be focusing on copywriting, on an achingly small scale.
I'll be highlighting titbits of copy that are done well, in keeping with a company's brand, and make a web experience enjoyable, as well as some that aren't so good.
In the spirit of new media, I’m calling this ‘micro-copy’. And, to the dismay of the A/B testers, I’ll posit that some of my examples are qualitatively ‘better’ than others.
You know what I hate more than anything? I hate the people who won't let me hate.
Here's why Polyanna Positiveness is a bad thing for content marketing.
Copywriting is an important part of a company’s image, as it helps to define the consumer perception of the brand personality.
For example, Innocent Smoothies uses quirky, light-hearted copy to portray a caring, friendly brand image.
But to what extent can copywriting really impact the consumer perception of a brand when they are already familiar with the business?
Brand language consultancy The Writer investigated this topic by testing people’s reaction to a series of customer scenarios.
2,000 consumers blind-tested writing samples from three airlines and three retailers, as well as an invented sample for each scenario.