Email newsletter campaigns are a fantastic way to stay connected with your customers.

Many who have tried sending out newsletters may have noticed that some were more successful than others.  Design, content and the quality of your subscriber list are all factors that determine success, but there is one unsuspecting and seemingly trivial attribute that can make or break your campaign… the Subject line… but how can you get it right?

Measuring success

At Envision we like integrating our client’s websites with the Mailchimp newsletter system because of its friendly interface and more importantly, its analytic rich features. Understanding the impact your newsletters are having is a snap thanks to Mailchimp reports.

Mailchimp reports

Having measurable data to consult allows one to fine tune elements and develop audience connecting strategies that engage. Did subscribers click on my “call to action” links? Did they even open the email? These are just some of the questions that need to be answered if you intend on improving your campaigns.

Open rates

Getting folks to open your email is the first and most important step in delivering content and yes Mailchimp has a metric for measuring that….Open Rates. The percentage of recipients that actually click on your email can vary widely based on subscriber base loyalty and by your industry, but some might suggest that a well crafted subject line is the key to getting an audience’s eyeballs on your message.

Just how important is the subject line?

The tactics & strategies behind the 2012 Obama presidential race Email campaigns are a well documented and heralded phenomena because they were responsible for raising nearly all of the $690 million canvassed online. This business week article is a fascinating look at what went into creating those appeals. In a nutshell it was the result of about 20 writers testing  up to 18 variations of subject lines per email, measuring their effectiveness and finally unleashing the winner on a massive subscriber list.  Along the way many assumed approaches were disproved by hard data forcing the team to adopt surprising tactics, ones  that actually engaged the audience and delivered results.

“Obama’s e-mail fundraising team tested hundreds of grabby subject lines. The most successful—“Hey”— brought in millions of dollars.”

What should we take away from this?

Results come from organized approaches, testing results and being open to fine tuning strategies based on measurable evidence. Sometimes the smallest changes can make a huge difference.

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