A reasonably generic blog!
A reasonably generic blog!
I had an interesting chat with a client last week.
I’ve had the same conversation many times over the past 15 years, and will continue to do so.
It was regarding the subject line for his email campaign.
He wanted to directly reference the product being promoted in the subject line (think model and model number).
I instead suggested a much more generic subject line, that references what said product handles.
As you’ve probably guessed, the client didn’t agree, on the grounds that the subject line was too generic.
A valid, and understandable opinion.
I explained why I prefer generic subject lines, and he debated “If Netflix were promoting a TV Show, they wouldn’t go with “TV Programme” as a subject line”.
I agreed. If Netflix were pushing a new TV show to their known subscribed list, they would not. They’d probably reference the show directly!
You may have spotted what I did there?
“their know subscribed list”.
In this scenario, Netflix are writing to a list of people who have subscribed to their content, engaged previously, and are more than likely already a client. This audience knows what to expect, has bought into it (figuratively and literally) and expects/wants to read about whatever Netflix are telling them.
However, sticking with the Netflix theme. Let’s say Netflix are promoting their actual service to a new list, a list of recipients who don’t even know who they are, what they’re about and ultimately why they are emailing us.
They wouldn’t go with “Netflix TV Streaming service” I said. Agree?
They would use something like “Stuck for something to watch tonight?”. Generic, on-topic, but you need to open the email to learn more.
In my humble opinion, there are 4 general outcomes to a non-generic subject line:
1. The reader already knows the product, wasn’t previously interested, and does not open the email.
2. The reader already knows the product, wasn’t previously interested, and does open the email. (least likely).
3. The reader has never heard of the product, has no idea what it’s even connected with and dismisses the email.
4. The reader has never heard of the product, has no idea what it’s even connected with but opens the email anyway. (second least likely).
When designing an email, and coming up with a subject line, you have to imagine yourself as the reader. As it’s more often than not a cold list, assume the reader has never heard of you or your product, but (if targeted right) can definitely identify with the problem it solves.
So. Be generic, but stay on topic.
Ask a question.
Or identify with a well known issue.
You get the gist.
Make the reader NEED to open the email to find out more. You’ve got their interest, now use the content to peak it!
If you’re interested in a b2b email marketing campaign, or just to find out more, contact us today and ask about our current offers.
29th April 2020
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