How To Get Your Bulk Email Read

by Brian on March 23, 2010

Yesterday we talked about bulk email marketing… If you have a list and you send that list an email, you are doing bulk email marketing.

Bulk email marketing only works if someone opens your email and reads it.

The challenge comes in finding the right headlines to use.

When someone opens your email, it’s tracked as an “open rate.” If you don’t have a good headline, your open rate is going to suck… therefore your entire campaign will suck.

When someone clicks on a link inside of that email, it’s tracked as the “click through rate.” This is where the messaging in the email comes into play. There are some specific guidelines to follow that work, but we won’t get into messaging today.

Obviously you can’t have a “click through rate” without it being preceded by an “open rate.”

Blog headlines are not intended for purchased bulk emails.

A while back we wrote about controversial headlines…  While they can be good for self-generated opt-in list, the opposite it true with purchased emails. The problem is that the recipient’s BS meter goes into the red instantly when they read the title.

Don’t get me wrong… Controversial headlines in emails will get your email opened… But from my experience, it ends up causing an abnormally low “click through rate.”

The reason I think this is the case is because once they see the controversial headline is actually just a trick to get them to open the email… they tend to click the delete button without clicking through since the headline is in no way related to your message.

The 4 most effective headlines I’ve used in purchased bulk email marketing campaigns.

  1. Thank You – Hands down the best headline I’ve ever used… The highest open rate, the highest click through rate… Why? Everyone likes to be thanked… If they get an email from someone saying “Thank You” they want to see what they are being thanked about… Even if it’s “Thank you for taking a moment out of your day.”
  2. I’m responding to your X – When people advertise that they need something and you respond with a solution, they have a tendency to respond. One would think this would be the most effective headline, but it tends to run a close second to “Thank You.”
  3. Important (Please Read) – A compelling reason “Important” along with a call to action “Please Read.” It’s solid.
  4. Your Response Is Requested – Yet another high open rate… People are curious about what they need to respond to.

Tomorrow we’ll go into depth and detail about the exact format I use for messaging.

What are some effective headlines you’ve used in email marketing campaigns?

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