eMail Marketing. To personalise, or not to personalise?

The stats say no. 
Colleen Backstrom
Kaleidoscope Online Marketing

Years ago direct marketing campaign gurus insisted that response rates improve considerably when you personalise.  [Experienced marketers will remember the great Reader’s Digest Sweepstake campaigns, where not only the envelope but the letter as well as the text within the letter, used the person’s name].

Today I am often asked by companies whether it is worth the effort to personalise their email campaigns.  Personally I have always felt a certain discomfort at some stranger knowing my full name.  After all I know that I come off some database, so the friendliness of “personalisation” rankles.

At last there are some stats to silence the debate. “Personalization in subject lines dramatically reduces both open rates and click through rates — with open rates of 6.7% (compared to 11.2% overall) and click through rate of 1.2% (compared to 1.6%).”

and in another survey

“eMails that had only the subject line personalized (12.4% Open Rate & 1.7% CTR) did worse than those with no personalization at all (13.5% Open Rate & 2.7% CTR). [ref]”

So the answer is “don’t personalise” unless you have had a meaningful interaction with your prospective clients…  which would entitle you to know their names.


About Kaleidsocope Advertising & Marketing
Kaleidoscope Advertising & emarketing specialises in full-service email marketing campaigns for clients. Using a scientific methodology based on eye-tracking studies we create sales for corporate clients.

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