Get to the Point, Mel!So why should this matter to you, the marketer? You want happy contacts, right? Happy contacts = increased engagement and revenue potential. So be authentic, and take the time to show your contacts they really matter. Think of subject lines as the beacon that will shape the behavior paths of your future contacts. Here’s a screenshot of my recent inbox. Out of roughly 20 emails from a two-day period, only one marketer addressed me by my first name. To me, that matters. It says Best Buy gets me and respects me. I also like smiley faces – bonus points for the emoji! Let me open that one!
Need Proof?According to Accenture, 56% of consumers are more likely to shop at a retailer in-store or online that recognizes them by name. A study from Infosys shows that 59% of shoppers who have experienced personalization believe it influences their purchasing decision. And Marketo found that 63% of respondents are highly annoyed by the way brands continue to rely on the old-fashioned strategy of repeatedly blasting generic ad messages. But what about results? A recent Experian report states that personalized promotional emails have 29% higher unique open rates and 41% more unique click-through rates. I can attest to the certainty of these metrics by working with my strategy-as-a-service clients to employ dynamic personalization. I’ve seen overall increases in opens, clicks and conversions up to 25% on average – and even as high as 60% in some cases.
To Personalize or Not to Personalize?Be cautious when it comes to your welcome, cart recovery and browse recovery series. Contacts receiving these messages either just opted in or are still in a more transactional phase. Don’t be that creepy neighbor who crosses the boundary. Take the time to find some commonality (think segmentation and big data) before addressing these folks by their first name. Loyalty emails, a post-purchase series and birthday/anniversary campaigns are great places to start. Here are a few examples from Stitch Fix, Ulta Beauty and again, Best Buy. But when in doubt, test! Try alluding to a teaser in your bulk cadence that requires the contact to open the email to reveal the deal, as Ulta Beauty and Burlington did below.
What About Those Empty First Name Fields?
No problem. For contacts with no first name in your system, craft something punchy that works with your brand. Tarte Cosmetics does a great job of this by addressing its female contacts as “tartelettes.”
Take it a step further, and address your contacts with something related to the main message of your email. Adore Me does an excellent job by showcasing its sleepwear collection within the email after addressing me as a “Sleeping Beauty” in the subject line.