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Econsultancy – Email Subject Line report – ‘Coupon’ and ‘voucher’ are out and ‘% off’ is in – to drive opens and clicks.

Econsultancy – Email Subject Line report – ‘Coupon’ and ‘voucher’ are out and ‘% off’ is in – to drive opens and clicks.

Econsultancy - Email Subject Line report – ‘Coupon’ and ‘voucher’ are out and ‘% off’ is in – to drive opens and clicks.

By: Econsultancy

Adestra study of almost 1 billion emails shows specific words to boost response

Latest research shows subject line length and specific words and phrases can make or break your email marketing campaigns. Subject lines are often overlooked and yet can have a massive effect (both positive and negative!) on response rates for brands’ campaigns – something marketers should be testing regularly. Adestra has analysed nearly one billion emails to establish what works for four key sectors, as well as B2B vs B2C, with some fascinating results.

Report author, Parry Malm, Account Director at Adestra says: “Our new subject line research has produced some incredibly interesting stats. It’s only one aspect of your email marketing arsenal, but when approached in the correct way subject line optimisation can prove to be an effective, and quick, tactical winner to help drive response rates.”

The report covers 6 sectors:


With the ecommerce sector, character and word count results are paradoxical. The choice is clear – shorter subject lines drive clicks, and longer subject lines drive opens. Marketers need to consider their objectives and then construct subject lines accordingly. Subject lines with 70 characters also appear to provide a huge uplift in click throughs. ‘Coupon’ and ‘voucher’ are out and ‘% off’ and ‘Summer sale’ are in – if you want to drive both opens and clicks.


The best click through rate comes from 15 words/120 characters upwards. Focusing on the benefits of attending a given event – be it the exhibitors, speakers, show features or whatever makes the show special. The words ‘conference’, ‘seminar’ and ‘webinar’ have much less impact than selling the benefits in the subject line. Mentioning price, discounts or using currency symbols can create a big uplift. Personalisation is also important here.


For publishers, the results are quite clear – a higher word count delivers more opens and click through rates. Similar to the events sector, sell the benefits and give more information about what your email contains, and your responses will increase. “Newsletter” or “Forecast” or “Intelligence” are to be avoided, while “Bulletin” or “Alert” will see your rates increase. Use cutting edge content – “Exclusive”, “Video” and “Interview” are all good.

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  • Profile:  Jeff Ginsberg has 17+ years’ experience and is an industry known authority on email marketing who gets in the trenches with clients and helps them fulfill their marketing objectives, increase revenue and brand engagement. Clients rely on him and his team at The eMail Company to provide them with expertise from strategy to technology and from campaign management to channel integration. Jeff has worked with clients across all spectrums in the financial, automotive, retail and consumer packaged goods space. His experience covers both B2B and B2C markets. He has a strong background in educating and training agencies and clients about email best practices and is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to marketing tools and vendor selection. While Jeff’s team may be small, they know how to solve BIG email marketing problems. Looking for help with your next campaign? Don’t be afraid to give him a call – Jeff and his team ready to help you today. Give me a call: Toll Free: 877-We-eMail (877-933-6245) Local: 416-225-7711 eMail: jeff@theemailcompany.com
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