Published on March 9th, 2011 | by Janine Popick0
Adventures In Testing – Our Very Own “Which Test Won”
Testing, testing, testing. We say it often enough that it might even sound like “blah, blah, blah” to you. But, it’s integral to a successful email marketing campaign.
You may be familiar with Anne Holland’s Which Test Won. If not, it’s a cool site that features a weekly marketing test along with the results. What’s more amazing is that the readers get to vote on which test they think won, and often a large percentage of them are wrong! This speaks volumes about the importance of testing. We shouldn’t assume what we don’t know.
Our VR marketing team recently ran a subject line test, and I wanted to share the results as testing inspiration for your email marketing.
First off, this is the process they followed to conduct the test (you can follow the same steps to conduct a similar test):
- Step 1: Create an email
- Step 2: Copy the email to create a carbon copy of it
- Step 3: Brainstorm subject lines and give each email a different subject line
- Step 4: Segment a list to create a targeted mailing list
- Step 5: Split the list into two (50% & 50%)
- Step 6: Send each email to one of the split lists
Here are the two subject lines they tested:
- Get 50% Off Email Credits – Up to 1,000!
- Get Your VR 10th Birthday Gift!
The team was curious to know if a mysterious “VR Gift” would perform better than directly calling out the offer in the subject line. Which subject line do you think performed better?
If you guessed the first one, Get 50% Off Email Credits – Up to 1,000, you’re right. This subject line had a 3.8% lift in open rate and made 45% more revenue. Remember, other than the subject line the emails were exactly the same. So this increase is all from testing one little element. Big reward for minimal work, right?
What do you test in your emails? What types of results do you see? I’d love to hear about your adventures in testing!
Related Marketing Guide: Testing, Testing, 1-2-3: Email Testing for Everyone
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